How to Market to Millennials
Do you think you’re wasting your time pursuing Millennials as clients because they don’t have enough money?
If so, you’re wrong, according to Curt Steinhorst. He says Millennials are saving – and spending – a lot more than people think. They want to work with advisors, Steinhorst said, but you need to adopt a radically different approach than with other generations.
Millennials are those born between 1977 and 1995, whereas Gen Zers were born in 1996 or later. Steinhorst is a certified speaker at the Center for Generational Kinetics, a Texas-based firm that does research into behavior and attitudes of Gen Z, Millennial, Gen Y, Gen X and Baby Boomer generations. He was a featured speaker at the Money Management Institute (MMI) annual conference in Chicago on October 3.
I asked one of my Millennial employees to review this article, and we agreed that Steinhorst’s claims were largely an unfair generalization of a diverse demographic cohort of Americans. Millennials differ in their buying and investing preferences, so be careful before you embrace any of Steinhorst’s views too closely.
What makes Millennials unique? He identified two factors that are key to understanding Millennials: parenting and technology.
The number-one trait associated with Millennials is that they are entitled, which stems from how they were raised. Entitlement is big expectations of an outcome without an understanding of the process, according to Steinhorst.
Where does this sense of entitlement come from? According to Steinhorst, at their 18th birthdays, Boomers were encouraged to move on to college or a job, whether or not that was what they wanted. For Millennials, they were told as long as they were in school, their parents would help them out.
“So they went to school for seven years and moved back home,” he said (sarcastically). Millennials’ parents wanted it to be easier for them than it was for themselves.
“That drove entitlement,” Steinhorst said.