Gen Y prospects want advisors and brokerage firms to help them build wealth.
And whoever reels them in now will come out ahead, says new research from Jason Dorsey of The Center for Generational Kinetics and First Clearing. In the U.S. alone, there were more than 8,000 tax filers under age 35 with gross incomes of more than $1 million, and another 409 with more than $10 million in income.
But these clients are different. When it comes to investments, you’d expect these clients to desire riskier, aggressive portfolios since they have a longer time horizon to save. To quote the paper, however:
“Gen Y has seen the dotcom bubble burst, and also witnessed large banks fail and housing values crumble. This gives them a more conservative profile than professionals might assume for someone of this demographic. Despite their young age, they’re actually not comfortable with financial risk.”
They also find you differently. While older people often arrange a face-to-face meeting to get to know you, this younger generation prefers texting and email to phone calls and meetings.
They’ll check you out online before meeting you. And, the paper suggests they’ll often compare many different firms and planners, regardless of whether or not they know you through their parents or friends.
Despite these differences and challenges, they’re worth searching for and recruiting. They’ll be clients for decades and they’re more open to considering both large and small firms; they don’t instinctively trust large banks, so will search for the best services based on their needs, says the paper.
How to attract Gen Y:
- Create an advisory board of young professionals and clients for your firm. Ask them for tips on how you can best serve customers their age, and promote the board to show you cater to young investors. Read: Understanding the Gen Y client
- Market to them by discussing topics they’re concerned about, such as first-time home buying. The paper suggests they’re focusing most on short-term goals. Read: 5 Tips for young prospects and clients
- Research papers, brochures and charts may work for some clients, but not young investors. They prefer to see presentations on tablets and mounted flat-screen TVs. Having soft copies of presentations and articles means they can send materials quickly and easily to friends and connections. They’ll also assess the modernity of an office’s physical appearance, says the paper. Read: Upgrade your office for rich clients