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Millennials Don't Care About Tech as Much As You Think

By Crucial Clips     November 23, 2016
The following text is a transcript of a portion of a speaker's presentation made at an industry conference or during an interview. This transcript solely represents the view of the individual who spoke, and not the view of Financial Advisor IQ or any other group.
Source: FA-IQ, Sep. 29, 2016 

BRUCE LOVE, MANAGING EDITOR, FINANCIAL ADVISOR IQ: This is Bruce Love with Financial Advisor IQ, and I'm here with Tony Stich, Director of Global Marketing for Advicent. Tony, we're always hearing about Millennials and how they're stuck with their faces in their phones. Is it really an issue as far as being able to provide technology for Millennials if you're a financial advisor?

TONY STICH, DIRECTOR OF GLOBAL MARKETING, ADVICENT: It's a great question. So yeah, right, people have their face in their phone all day long, they're texting all day. But we have a great deal of research that says the opposite. In fact, Millennials really want, they actually strive for, human advice. They want a trusted partner. They seek out that, on their own terms though.

So you're correct. Right? They're going to text message, they're going to look at their accounts online via their phone or what have you. But they still want that human advisor there. And so this is a great opportunity for financial advisors to offer that digital technology that Millennials are coming to expect.

BRUCE LOVE: Sounds easy to say, just start offering technology. But if you're a financial advisor, how exactly do you go about doing that?

TONY STICH: I know. It's funny you ask that question, because it can be overwhelming. Advisors get very concerned, right? They're used to the way they do business. And so to suggest that you need to start offering a client portal or account aggregation features can become very overwhelming.

I think I'll go back to the point that you need to find a vendor that will provide training and adoption materials to help you get off the ground. It's remarkably simple. And if you get good adoption from your clients, you'll be able to spread out your book of business, become more efficient and more profitable. Because keep in mind, Millennials might not be profitable today, they will be profitable in the future. But you can now service the needs of more clients with digital technology

BRUCE LOVE: Tony, Millennials are also going to be the beneficiaries of quite large wealth transfer in the next decade or so. Is this going to be an issue in terms of what they're going to be expecting from their advisors?

TONY STICH: That is the elephant in the room now, isn't it? Some estimates report $30 trillion will transfer from Baby Boomers and traditionalists down to Millennials. This will happen over the next 20 or so years. We're projecting about $4 trillion by the year 2020 going down to the Millennials. What's going to happen then? Are you prepared as an advisor? Have you started to lay that ground work to attract and retain those millennial clients? There's a lot of reports out there that suggest that when that Millennial gets that transfer, they're going to fire their parents' advisor.

So how are you changing that? I think that the number one answer, of course, is providing a digital experience that they want, that they expect. But also, talking and communicating on their terms. I know there's a lot of regulations around text messaging and how you communicate via email, but you're going to see a lot more of that, where it's not going to be a phone call anymore. You're going to have to communicate either through video conferencing, through emails, and other forms of communication that Millennials expect.

So to summarize, you have to be prepared with technology, but prepared to talk their language. Millennials want to talk differently, but they still want advice. They still want help. So start preparing now, because over the next couple of years, there's a lot of money to be made in that generational wealth transfer.

BRUCE LOVE: Tony, thank you very much.

TONY STICH: Thank you.