They represent a bigger opportunity than the Baby Boomer generation and they require new strategies from planners who want to reach them. But, for those planners who can adapt to the preferences and priorities of Generation Y, they could provide a lifetime of new clients.
This is according to a new white paper advising planners on the intricacies of reaching the 80 million members of Generation Y, who are in their mid 30s to early 40s today (by contrast, there are approximately 76 to 78 million retirement-age members of the Boomer generation). The paper, titled "Gen Y is Ready to Invest . Are You Ready to Advise Them?" is co-published by Wells Fargo affiliate First Clearing Correspondent Services and Jason Dorsey, chief strategy officer of the Austin-based Center for Generational Kinetics, which studies generational trends.
"Gen Y is really receptive to is information and education," says Bill Coppel, chief client growth officer for First Clearing. "They will be much more likely to communicate with you remotely through technology until they've gained confidence and trust and will be more likely to let you into their world."
The white paper urges planners to take the time to listen to Gen Y prospects, confirm you've heard their concerns and to help them understand investing ideas rather than just trying to sell them something, according to Coppel.
"Do not hand a Gen Y person your brochure," Coppel insists.
Coppel adds that Gen Y is an increasingly critical factor in a new shift in wealth management which is putting the emphasis for planners not on a single generation, but on multiple generations.
"Wealth management today transcends generations, unlike in the past," Coppel says. "It's no longer just about getting good financial results for individuals; it's also about building relationships with entire families.
"It boils down to the following," he adds, "People have got to work with Gen Y on their terms and not expect them to evolve to the way we function as Boomers."
The white paper is now available at here along with several other papers from First Clearing.