As the active member of a thriving brokerage, a financial planner, insurance agent or even an annuity advisor, you have the power to help people plan for the future with confidence. Items like linked benefit products and even simple life insurance policies give clients the piece of mind they need to face the future, knowing their loved ones and their money will be protected. The real issue facing financial professionals is finding potential clients and educating them on why they should take steps now to invest. With this in mind, it’s important to look at current spending habits broken down by generation and how you, as an advisor, can help individuals plan for their future with more confidence.
While many disparaging things have been said about Millennials, they are also the generation most likely to have a written financial plan unlike earlier Generation X or Baby Boomers. However, this form of financial planning doesn’t always translate into long-term money saving or management. Millennials, as a whole, are more likely to buy on impulse and use their money for the latest fad, fancy drink or trendy eatery. The best approach when working with millennials is to work with older millennials who have settled down and transformed their spending habits to reflect a more stable model of long-term success (i.e., home ownership, marriage, etc.). These are signs that this generation has something to save for and will be more willing to consider their future. Presenting with high quality products and ensuring that their money isn’t being wasted is the best approach.
Generation X spending habits are characterized by being inclined to spend on great customer service combined with a great deal as opposed to dropping money on high-priced, fancy items. Gen X is looking for a value priced experience with 5-star service, so the most expensive products won’t naturally appeal to these savvy shoppers. An advisor who takes the time to listen to these individuals, give superior service and the right priced products will make a better impression and gain more clients.
The important thing to remember is that no matter the generation, the best thing you as an advisor can do, is present the best products for your clients and be available for any questions or concerns. Be there and be ready to communicate.