Millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. Labor force, totaling more than 56 million individuals. But are they thinking about retirement planning? A recent report by the National Institute on Retirement Security revealed that two thirds of millennials have nothing set aside for retirement. Additionally, 95% of the millennials that are saving for retirement are doing so improperly. Retirement professionals everywhere are asking the question, “How do we reach millennials with retirement planning?” Here are a few insights that could help.
1. Help them understand why they should care.
The first thing we need to understand to reach millennials is that messaging is everything. We have to find a way to meet them on their level. At 25 years of age, they’re not necessarily thinking about retirement. Many of them are still deciding what they want to do for the rest of their lives. Others are starting businesses. We must craft messaging in a way that is easy for them to understand and apply to their own lives. Keep in mind that retirement planning is still a foreign concept for many millennials. So, try to create messaging that uses laymen’s terms instead of technical language.
2. Appeal to their desired future.
Millennials care very much about personal development. One popular trend right now is “Vision Boards.” People are encouraged to create a visual representation of their desired future. Their vision board might include a picture of a home that they’d like to own or a place they want to visit. It might include a car they hope to buy or a role model they look up to. As retirement professionals, we can help millennials understand how proper retirement planning will help them achieve the life they desire.
3. Use the power of story.
Story is the most compelling form of marketing. The idea of story marketing is positioning your customers as the “hero” of the story and your company as the “guide” who can help the hero overcome challenges to achieve the desired result, or a “happy ending.” A lot of retirement planning professionals make the mistake of overloading their audience with information. While information is important, story-based marketing can help us present information in a way that is more meaningful to a millennial audience. The book Building a Story Brand by Donald Miller is a great resource for more information on this form of marketing.
4. Reach them where they are at.
In order to effectively reach millennials with retirement planning insight, we have to consider where they are spending their time. While there are a variety of answers to this question, the simplest answer is online. According to a poll by Ipsos, the average millennial with a household income of at least $100,000 spends 7.5 hours per day online. This statistic simply can’t be ignored. That’s why it’s more important than ever for retirement planning professionals to not only have an online presence but to expand their reach even further. Blogs, videos, social media, and webinars are just a few of the ways we can reach millennials in the digital space.
5. Add value with engaging content.
Have you ever heard the phrase “content marketing?” What about “inbound marketing?” These are two major trends in digital marketing. The idea is offering content so valuable that potential customers find you because of it. And if they are happy with what they’ve found, they’ll share it with their friends and family. They may even post about it on their personal social media accounts. Going back to the story brand marketing philosophy, offering valuable content is a great way to position yourself as the guide in the customer’s journey. There are several ways to add value through engaging content. Perhaps the best place to start is by thinking about your target audience and what questions they have about retirement planning.
Although it may seem overwhelming, reaching millennials with retirement planning is possible – and necessary. As the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, they are one of the largest target markets for retirement planning. We hope these five tips will help you create and implement a strategy.