Millennials (those born between 1980 and somewhere between 1998 & 2004) make up a quarter of the world’s population. As the first generation to grow-up with the internet and social media from before adulthood, these ‘digital-natives’ have a unique relationship with technology and social media.
From a young age, early access to the internet and the ubiquity of smart phones and mobile apps has continually shaped their view of the world. It also shapes their view of how companies they regularly engage with utilise technology to enhance their client experience.
Less concerned with sharing personal data, millennials often have an expectation that their customer experiences will be tailored to their specific requirements.
It is therefore understandable that millennials expect their wealth manager to follow in the footsteps of other sectors by delivering a modern, digital client experience.
Why should you care?
Millennials are poised to receive more than USD30 trillion of inheritable wealth (EY – Sustainable Investing – The Millennial Investor) over the next 15 years. They will be your biggest market so is essential you are technologically prepared to meet their needs.
Also, if your firm is not ready to capture the millennial market already, you aren’t just missing out on the opportunity to win over the next generation of investor. There is a very real chance you could start haemorrhaging existing client AUM too.
More than winning new clients, it’s also about retaining existing wealth
In the 2017 report, ‘The Rise of Affluent Millennials: How to Stay Relevant’, published by the European Financial Management Association (EFMA), 57% of Millennial respondents stated they would change their bank for a superior technology platform. According to research by Deloitte, historically, intergenerational wealth transfers have resulted in 90% of heirs changing advisors. And in the EY Report ‘The Experience Factor – The New Growth Engine in Wealth Management’, a study showed that 73% of clients are already engaged in relationships with more than one wealth manager.
As you can see, meeting the needs of the modern investor isn’t just about winning the millennial market. It’s just as much about ensuring that your current share of the millennial and next-gen investor wallet doesn’t disappear either.
Evolution, not revolution
It won’t come as a surprise to most in the industry but the wealth management is on the whole, an industry laggard when it comes to investing in digital solutions. The application of modern technology to improve processes across the board is not something that is coming naturally to many firms.
But a hybrid model, where ‘traditional’ wealth practices are augmented by technology, provides the convenience and personalisation millennials crave, whilst gaining the trustworthy support and security that can only be provided by a human advisor.
So what do you need to consider?
There are two words to take-away from this blog; ‘personalisation’ and ‘collaboration’.
Whether dealing with clients or advisors, the experience should be holistic. If you haven’t already started putting a plan into action in order to deliver an holistic client experience, you need to:
- Ensure your system meets the needs of both client and advisor: provide access to real-time data and information so clients can engage at their own convenience, wherever they are.
- Personalise your communication and marketing messages: be pro-active with your recommendations, ensuring you anticipate their financial and communication needs rather than simply being reactive to their demands and external market forces.
- Invest in a system that provides your entire team access to critical data: breaking down the traditional walls and data siloes in your firm is a big step to ensuring you are providing a modern client experience. The more data that is available, the better and more personalised your client communications will be.
- Streamline your onboarding and KYC process: gone are the days of Excel, spreadsheets and manual uploads, or at least they should be. Asking potential clients to go through a laborious, time-consuming, manual sign-up process is the fastest way to lose them.
- Be open and transparent about your fees: More than ever, transparency around fees is a deciding factor in determining which firms win new business.
Delivering a modern, superior wealth management experience for millennials could very well be the single defining factor that sets you apart from your competitors. And with the right technology, you can help ensure your firm both retains its existing clients and wins the battle for a new generation of investor.
Xpedition Wealth Management has already helped firms like yours better understand the millennial mindset, build a winning CRM business case, and help deliver a modern, digital, holistic client experience.