When contemplating Gen Z — those people born between 1996-2015 — many people assume they are another iteration of Millennials (early 1980s to early 2000s). That means they are a digital-obsessed generation with no interest in, for instance, visiting a bank teller.
It turns out that’s not the case. In a podcast interview with BAI Banking Strategies, Karl Dahlgren, their managing editor of research, he identifies some unique characteristics of Generation Z that banks should be aware of when working to attract the largest generational segment in America (90 million strong).
Some of the main points made by Mr. Dahlgren include:
- Think tellers are on their way out? Think again! Gen Z uses bank branches – drive-up and lobby – more than any other generation.
- Because they are in the early stages of their careers, Gen Z is hungry for in-person advice as to how to handle their finances.
- While Gen Z seems willing to share all aspects of their lives via social media, they do not want AI mining their account information for marketing suggestions and offers. Fraud-prevention? No problem.
- Two-thirds of Gen Z will use their parents’ financial institution — but 70% are more than willing to jump to another organization with better technology and better innovation.
Generation Z is large, but many are wondering if their current wealth is worth pursuing. Well, Mr. Dahlgren concludes with a piece of solid hockey advice: “Pass the puck to where the player is going to be, not where they are standing.” The smart financial institutions are the ones who work toward Gen Z because they will inherit the wealth of Generation X!
Similarly, the saying also applies to how banks operate. While current technologies may be suitable for now now, it is important for banks to understand that once-cutting-edge technologies will hold them back in the near future (if not already). The banking industry is integrating Artificial Intelligence in many facets of the business, and not remaining flexible enough to anticipate and stay ahead of the curve will leave many banks behind.
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