Fintech products succeed because they simplify necessary financial tasks. That’s why they’re embraced by users across a range of demographics. However, as is often the case, younger consumers were initially more likely than others to adopt these new technologies.
Fintech entrepreneurs need to be aware of this. Targeting Millennials and Gen Z, the younger generation after them, represents a lucrative opportunity to reach potential customers who are highly likely to be interested in your products and services.
To better understand what your target audience is looking for, consider the following facts about these two generations.
Younger Consumers Struggle to Manage Their Finances
It’s no secret that social media is popular among Millennials and Gen Z’ers. That said, some of its effects aren’t positive. Research indicates that social media usage can result in fear of missing out, or FOMO. Quite simply, when people see their friends and family posting about exciting experiences, they feel they like they’re missing out—like they’re not having any fun while other people are.
What’s more, FOMO can actually prevent young consumers from managing their finances effectively—they tend to spend money on enjoying life, rather than saving or investing. While there are some apps designed to make it easier and painless for Millennials and Gen Z’ers to manage their money, there’s clearly still room for more in the market.
Gen Z’ers Aren’t Finishing College as Much as Other Generations
More Millennials have attended college than any previous generation. So, it may be surprising to learn that the cohort after the Millennials isn’t following suit. In fact, many members of Gen Z are not finishing college, or are choosing to skip it altogether.
From a fintech development perspective, this can help you determine what types of features would less relevant to a Gen Z customer. For example, a budgeting app meant to target Gen Z with a strong focus on budgeting for college life may not resonate with them. You might be better off developing a budgeting tool that’s useful for young people just entering the workforce. If trends continue, the number of young consumers attending college will keep on shrinking. Keeping this in mind could help you make more future-conscious decisions. That’s key to getting an edge over the competition.
Millennials Like Extras
Research indicates that Millennial consumers are impressed with products that offer more than simply the bare bones or core features. For example, imagine a Millennial wants to take out a student loan from a fintech company. One way to secure their business is to offer additional perks and add-ons with the loan, such as a budgeting tool or free access to financial planners. These additional features are attractive to value-conscious Millennials.
That’s important to keep in mind as you develop your products. While your primary focus should be on perfecting the core features of your product and ensuring its security, it may pay off to consider the additional features you can offer. For instance, if you were developing a product that allows users to send and receive money via an app, you might also include a feature that syncs with a budgeting tool. Every time the user sends or receives a payment, they could immediately see how it affects their budget.
Gen Z’ers Like a Message
According to research, members of Gen Z tend to be very socially conscious. They prioritize sustainability and social justice, and they like brands whose values reflect their own. A brand with some kind of social responsibility commitment will typically appeal more to Gen Z’ers than a brand that doesn’t have a message or values, even if the products are essentially equal in terms of quality. It’s important to remember this, not only as it applies to product development, but also when developing marketing campaigns.
The way you can demonstrate social responsibility depends on the nature of your product. That said, odds are good there’s some way you can associate your brand with this type of positive messaging. For example, as this blog has pointed out in the past, many fintech products have allowed traditionally unbanked and underbanked people to access financial services to a greater degree than ever before. By letting young consumers know how your product has helped such people, you can make them feel as though they are participating in something meaningful.
There are other opportunities for fintech companies to target Gen Z via their social consciousness—namely, by helping them support their favorite charities and nonprofits. For example, some apps allow consumers to save by rounding up purchases to the nearest dollar and sending the change to a savings account. Instead of a savings account, these extra cents, or a portion of them, can be sent to a charity of the user’s choice. Other apps focus on socially responsible investments, or allow users to donate shares to a charity rather than money.
The points above are just a few of the particularly noteworthy insights about Millennial and Gen Z consumer behavior. By conducting your own market research and staying up to date with generational trends, you can successfully target these younger consumers.