Cracking the Code of Gen Z Trust: Financial and Marketing Insights
You’ve heard of baby boomers and Gen Xers, but Gen Z is the newest generation making impactful changes in the world’s economy. Gen Z includes anyone born after 1996 and currently makes up approximately one-tenth of the electorate in the United States. Generation Z’ers are typically hard workers who have finances at the top of their minds due to rising inflation and high-interest rates.
The demographics of Gen Z are changing - this is the last generation to be predominantly White. This new generation of young people is more diverse and inclusive than ever, so it’s important for businesses to learn the best marketing strategies for these up-and-coming adults.
Understanding Gen Z’s financial behaviors
In order to develop the right marketing strategy, it’s vital to understand the financial behaviors of Gen Z members. Data such as spending patterns, saving habits, investment behaviors, and interactions with financial institutions are crucial. When you understand these financial behaviors, you’re more likely to build trust between your business and Gen Z, allowing you to create uniquely targeted marketing strategies for this new generation.
Gen Z’s attitude towards money
A recent survey found that approximately 69% of Gen Z’ers are saving some money for the future, with most of those surveyed putting that money toward their first home. Around 45% of Gen Z'ers have named homeownership as their main future goal. Approximately 39.5% of Gen Z'ers surveyed aimed to increase their income over the next few years.
This generation is certainly industrious and goal-oriented. While previous generations also looked toward homeownership as a financial goal, Gen Z is more focused on making money in addition to putting some away for savings.
Gen Z’s preferred banking methods and platforms
Digital banking and new technology have impacted the way Gen Z banks and how they manage their money. Mobile banking and digital payments are the norm for Gen Z, while cash is quickly going by the wayside.
Whether it’s platforms like Venmo and PayPal or using all-digital banks like Sofi and Ally Bank, the new generation tends to do almost all their banking digitally and online. Many of these banks don’t have physical branches, but that’s not as important to Gen Z as it was to previous generations. All-digital financial services are nothing new or revolutionary to the Gen Z crowd.
Gen Z’s relationship with financial institutions
Loyalty to financial institutions isn’t as important to Gen Z as it was to prior generations. Today’s Gen Z’ers often have several accounts with a variety of financial institutions. Only 33% of Gen Z'ers from a recent survey said they had just one account with one financial institution.
Perks like rewards points, automatic savings that round to the nearest dollar, and a combination of banking and investing are appealing to Gen Z. These adults prefer to have as many options, perks, and features as possible, making finances easier to manage and more rewarding.
Gen Z and investments
Gen Z prefers to invest in companies that are in line with their values rather than just the source offering the highest returns. New tech-based investments like cryptocurrency and NFTs are also catching on with Gen Z. While older generations typically keep their money in a 401(k), Gen Z invests in a wider variety of resources.
Prior generations tended to keep one job until retirement, but Gen Z typically changes careers more often throughout their lifetime. This means they want an investment strategy that’s easier to move around and access when they need it. Many in this generation are unsure how to invest their money, so they often need some guidance along the way.
Marketing to Gen Z: key considerations
To market effectively, businesses should look at what Gen Z values most. The team at Creatopy launched a whitepaper uncovering a few important things that can help you understand how they behave online (specifically on social media), and how they view online advertising.
Here are some key considerations to keep in mind when your business develops a modern marketing plan.
The value of authenticity and transparency
Gen Z prefers authenticity over perfection. When perfect models are used to market a product, most Gen Z’ers don’t feel like the brand is being its true, authentic self. A survey found that 22% of Gen Z’ers value transparency in advertising. According to the survey, a lack of transparency reduced their opinions of a brand and made them more skeptical about different products or services.
When developing a marketing strategy for Gen Z, it’s important to form a connection with your target market and be as authentic and transparent as possible to gain new revenue and customers in this niche. Doing so also helps build trust and loyalty with Gen Z’ers.
The role of digital platforms and social media
Gen Z’ers do a large portion of their online shopping via digital platforms and social media. Apps like Instagram offer a fun, easy way to discover new, unique products that are tailored to their demographic. Implementing a marketing strategy that includes social media across a wide range of platforms is one of the best ways to reach Gen Z’ers. Instead of shopping at malls or brick-and-mortar stores, these young customers prefer to look for clothing, shoes, and other hot items online. Connecting to Gen Z on social media is one of the most effective ways to implement a smart marketing strategy.
Influencer marketing and Gen Z’s preferences
Influencer marketing is highly effective with Gen Z, but the influencer must be relatable and authentic. It’s important for business influencers not to go straight for the sale when they market to this generation. Most Gen Z’ers can tell when an Influencer is only in it for the money.
If you use influencers as part of your digital marketing plan, make sure the person or people are passionate about what they do, what they’re selling, and that they actually use these items themselves. Creative content that grabs their attention can help you gain new customers and, hopefully, keep those customers for life.
Sustainability and social responsibility
Gen Z values sustainability and social responsibility above all other generations prior. This new generation looks at the sustainability of companies and products, and this factor has a profound impact on their purchasing decisions.
Social responsibility is also important. Providing workers with a fair living wage and proper working conditions, supporting causes that Gen Z cares about, and doing the right thing is crucial. One survey found that 73% of Gen Z’ers said they’re willing to pay more money for sustainable products, so this factor is vital if you’re developing a product, service, or marketing strategy.
Bridging the gap: financial institutions and Gen Z
Many traditional financial institutions face challenges when it comes to engaging Gen Z. It’s important to offer new strategies that overcome these challenges in order to leverage things like digital innovation and digital marketing. Bridging this gap helps to foster trust and loyalty among Gen Z consumers.
Many Gen Z’ers think of financial institutions as cold and impersonal. Much of this generation is also insecure about their financial future and their financial literacy, which makes them more hesitant to save, invest, and apply for loans. This information comes from a research study from Bank of America and Ceros. It also found that Gen Z has a strong desire for personalization in the banking industry.
To this generation, trust in financial institutions comes from more than just their bottom line. According to Bankrate, Gen Z pays approximately $19 per month in checking account fees, while prior generations pay around $8 per month. Offering new incentives and lower banking fees to Gen Z customers is vital.
Steps to attract and retain Gen Z customers
Banks and other financial institutions need to take clear steps to attract and retain Gen Z customers. This includes developing more personalized products and services that cater to the new generation. Financial institutions should also partner with new digital platforms and tech companies to provide Gen Z consumers with a hybrid model for banking. This allows them to move their money around more easily, track savings and interest, and make transactions across platforms.
Financial institutions also need to start taking a more customer-focused approach to reassure Gen Z customers that they’re trustworthy, which in turn builds retention and loyalty.
The role of digital innovation in winning Gen Z’s trust
Approximately 4 million Gen Z’ers will open a new bank account every year through 2026. To win their trust, financial institutions must develop new digital innovations that make using their accounts and services easier, more streamlined, and more appealing.
A large sector of Gen Z customers is using the buy now, pay later model. Banks and financial institutions that offer this service will likely win Gen Z’s loyalty and trust. Easier access to credit and high-interest savings accounts is also appealing to Gen Z. Instant applications and fast approval for loans and credit online is another impactful way to win Gen Z’s trust and get new accounts.
The role of technology and innovation in Gen Z engagement
Technological innovation has shaped the way Gen Z engages with businesses and financial institutions. This generation’s quick embracing of technology impacts every facet of their lives, including their financial and purchasing behaviors. Understanding future trends and their impacts can help your business garner more Gen Z engagement.
How Gen Z embraces technology
Gen Z is certainly embracing technology more than any other generation. One survey found that 81% of Gen Z’ers are active on social media, and 47% use social media to research a range of products. Companies must keep up with new technologies and innovations if they want to attract the new generation. Because Gen Z is comfortable and familiar with technology, they tend to use it as a means to find a variety of products and services before any other method.
Innovative approaches to engage Gen Z
To engage Gen Z customers, your business should implement new, innovative approaches. This includes building a strong community, establishing a brand identity, and engaging with your target market. Make sure your business’s values and mission are clear and that you hold true to those values.
Diversity and inclusion are equally important to Gen Z’ers. Underwear brand Parade is a good example of how diversity and inclusion impact Gen Z customers. By using plus-size models and models of color, the brand has seen great success within this demographic.
Future technology trends and their potential impact
Gen Z’ers are much more likely to turn to technology to purchase products and services and to perform financial tasks like banking, credit transactions, and moving their money to savings. According to Insider Intelligence, there will be 45.4 million Gen Z digital banking customers by the year 2025.
It’s important for businesses and financial institutions to keep up with emerging technology trends and implement them into their own business model. Doing so ensures that your company is able to attract and retain Gen Z customers for life.
Balancing technology and human touch in engaging Gen Z
While technology is certainly important to Gen Z, so are human touch and authenticity. It’s important to blend both of these things if you want to build relationships with Gen Z customers. Make sure that you’re providing relatable, relevant content and services for this generation. While technology makes doing things easier, lots of Gen Z customers still want the human factor as part of their experience. Consider designing a “hybrid model” where you offer personal customer experiences with real humans and technology together to design a realistic, compassionate business.
Cracking the code: strategies for building trust with Gen Z
Building trust is crucial not just to gain new customers but also to maintain them. Here are some strategies for building trust among Gen Z consumers.
The importance of trust for Gen Z consumers
Brand trust is extremely important to Gen Z consumers. One survey found that 79% of Gen Z’ers find brand trust important, in contrast to 61% of baby boomers. Brands, companies, and financial institutions should be open and honest with their customers, offer good communication, and address issues promptly. If companies don’t do these things, it can create a feeling of mistrust and skepticism, especially among Gen Z. Younger customers assume brands are hiding something or lack concern if they don’t promptly address problems.
Strategies for building and maintaining trust
To build and maintain trust between your business and Gen Z, remain consistent with your message and branding. Keep statements consistent across all social media platforms, be authentic, and deliver on the promises you make. It’s important that your Gen Z customers feel seen and heard. If they express concerns, listen to their feedback and then try to implement it as much as possible to show that you actually care about your customer base.
Tactics for effective communication with Gen Z
Open and honest communication is one of the best ways to build trust with Gen Z. Be transparent and available to answer questions and field concerns. Use social media influencers or spokespeople who speak the language of Gen Z so they have a face and personality behind the business. Keep engagement high on social media to foster better communication with these young, tech-savvy consumers. Gen Z is a big fan of open communication, so it’s vital to keep these channels open.
Gauging future financial and purchasing behavior impacts how you market to Gen Z and how much revenue you garner from this generation. Here are some tips for businesses to continue engaging Gen Z.
Predicted financial behavior of Gen Z
New trends in technology can help businesses gauge the future financial behavior of Gen Z members. Three major facets are currently trending - NFTs, cryptocurrency, and digital banking. By implementing these into your business model, you have a better chance to attract and retain Gen Z customers. Regularly sharing and posting customer reviews is also crucial. One study found that 96% of Gen Z customers say they take the time to read reviews for products and services.
Predicted marketing preferences of Gen Z
In the future, Gen Z will continue to look for unique brands that aren’t afraid to break conventional molds. They expect authenticity and honesty but also creativity. The traditional ways likely won’t work to convince Gen Z consumers. Innovative content and marketing strategies are a must to obtain Gen Z customers. Make sure your business keeps up with digital evolutionary trends and societal trends. Look for keywords and key issues that are important to Gen Z consumers.
Impacts on businesses and financial institutions
Many Gen Z’ers view consumption as the ability to access products rather than simply possessing them. In other words, this generation values high-quality and fair prices over quantity and overconsumption. While some Gen Z’ers love designer labels and luxury brands, many are more concerned about a company’s social and environmental impacts above all else. It’s important to be able to adapt to this ever-changing landscape. Keep up with new trends involving Gen Z and then implement them into your business or financial institution.
Use the information and statistics from this guide to help your business crack the code when it comes to Gen Z trust. It’s important to understand Gen Z’s financial behaviors and marketing practices to help you develop a successful and unique business strategy. Building an authentic, trustworthy relationship with Gen Z is one of the best ways to ensure business growth and success moving forward.