Millennials and post-millennials, or Gen Z, may be big into Beyoncé and Jay Z, but they’re definitely not into banking at all. A research study with 10,000 people born between 1981 and 2000 reported that banks are among the most unlikable brands within this demographic. Even though research also shows that millennials rely on the personal touch of banks, they still judge a bank on their digital capabilities.
So, how can your community bank engage with millennials and Gen Z? Here are five ways to help your bank become–and remain–relevant to this demographic:
1. Promote offers they truly care about.
Chances are late millennials and post-millennials aren’t really looking for a mortgage loan just yet. Whether they’re splitting time between their parents’ recently-renovated basement and a college dorm or couch surfing across the world, your target audience has no rush to commit to a permanent residence or a mortgage with your bank. To engage with this specific audience, you’ll have to focus only on the promotions that actually matter to them.
Ninety-two percent of millennials say they’d choose a bank with digital services over a bank that doesn’t offer them. Therefore, target these young adults with your digital services, including the most relevant features: mobile check deposits and simple transfers between accounts. In addition, 93% of millennials prefer banks that offer no-fee banking options, and 30% of them would switch banks in a heartbeat if they were offered a year of free banking. If you want to win them over, you might want to consider creative with big bold fonts screaming NO FEES (accompanied by the requisite disclosures, of course).
2. Get inside their most precious possession: their phone.
Mobile marketing and mobile advertising are extremely important for your bank regardless of which demographic you’re targeting. After all, 77% of Americans own a smartphone. When we look into people between the ages of 18 and 29, that number shoots up to 94%. If that weren’t enough, studies show that millennials spend an average of 3.2 hours a day on their mobile devices and use their phone while consuming other forms of media.
Put it this way: while your multi-thousand-dollar TV commercial is airing, a millennial is scrolling through his or her Instagram feed. Doesn’t it seem like a no-brainer for your community bank to move that TV advertising budget into mobile marketing?
3. Millennials might be mobile-addicts, but they are selective.
We’ve established that millennials are almost literally attached to their phones. They sleep with them under the pillow and experience high-level anxiety when their device is out of reach for even 10 seconds. Even so, they’re super specific and selective about how they consume mobile media. Millennials and Gen Z prioritize social media apps like Snapchat and Instagram over others. Even though they use other mobile apps, your bank should allocate your mobile marketing budget wisely and invest more where your audience spends the most time.
4. Mobile friendly versus Millennial-friendly
Here’s some good advice: try not to focus so much on creating millennial-friendly content. Instead, make sure your content is mobile-friendly. After all, at the end of the day, you’re still promoting your bank.
There’s no need to use slang and pretend to be cool to get millennials’ attention. What really matters to millennials is that your site or landing page is mobile-optimized. In other words, the page they are redirected should look good on their phones and be easy to navigate. Studies show that visitors won’t stay on a site if they have to constantly pinch and zoom in and out.
Designing a mobile-optimized landing page will help to reduce your bounce rate and increase conversions. Include highly-visible call-to-action (CTA) buttons on your page to encourage your visitors to take action.
5. Invest in real experts.
Mobile is constantly changing, which makes it hard to stay on top of all the new trends and tools that will allow your bank to run successful mobile promotions and offers. That’s why it’s important to build a mobile marketing team you can trust. Hire an experienced marketing manager or Chief Marketing Officer who understands the needs of mobile marketing and will strategically plan and run effective campaigns for your bank. Gather a team of designers who are capable of creating advertisements that will resonate with your audience and implement web changes that will keep your potential customers engaged.
Another option is to team up with an experienced agency that will understand your bank and its needs. The market is saturated with traditional and digital advertising agencies. Multiple options are waiting for you out there. However, banking is a complex industry that not every agency really comprehends. You might have to dig deep to find the agency that has the knowledge and experience that can truly make your bank shine. RAIN is a full-service mobile marketing technology that specializes in helping community banks across the country grow and thrive.
Focusing on mobile advertising for banks only, RAIN has the experience and knowledge your bank needs. Their team can help you reach millennials and Gen Z audiences in a matter of days. But the fun doesn’t stop there: RAIN has proven incredible ROIs on mortgage and business loans, new checking and saving accounts, BaZing products, and much more.
With any of these five tips your bank could make a solid impact on your community’s population of millennials and Gen Z. Implement them all and you just might even make it to Beyonce status among your bank’s new followers!