Gen Y has been characterized as difficult to work with and too dependent on technology. (The author of this post is a member of Gen Y and disagrees. She doesn’t even have a smartphone.)

But, they’re also your future clients, with the pool of older prospects—aged 40-to-59—slated to grow only 1% over the next decade.

Gabe Garcia, director of relationship management at Pershing Advisor Solutions in New Jersey, revealed this stat at his firm’s Insite 2012 Financial Solutions Conference, reports Financial Planning. Advisors who don’t research and target younger generations and investors will miss out on a golden opportunity to stay ahead of the curve, he added.

“For the last two decades, you have focused on Baby Boomers – and rightly so,” Garcia told conference attendees. “It has served you well and allowed you to create a successful business, but your business strategy will have to change.”

He suggests linking with your current clients’ children and younger family members to start building your business now, and to start preparing for the future. After all, they’ll be the ones inheriting your customers’ funds and businesses, and will transform from “wealth accumulators to wealth distributors.”

Want more information and tips? Read more on how to acquire and help young, up-and-coming prospects:

Advice for young clients and prospects

Understanding the Gen Y client

5 hurdles for young female clients

Under 35 and no plan

How to help young women clients

Gen X squeezed Boomers, Gen Y

How to handle Generation X

Help middle-class clients