Each generation has distinct financial goals for 2024—and they should inform banks’ targeted marketing strategies

The news: From Gen Alpha to baby boomers, each age cohort has specific financial goals for 2024 that financial institutions (FIs) can use when creating targeted messaging campaigns.

  • These consumers are all trying to overcome challenges unique to their generation, and FIs can help them feel supported in meeting these goals.

Baby boomers don’t feel prepared for retirement: Now that every baby boomer is over the age of 60, they’re thinking about retirement if they haven’t already transitioned into this phase.

  • However, more than two in five baby boomers have no retirement savings set aside, and 70% of this generation feels uncertainty about whether their retirement savings will suffice.
  • Contrary to popular belief, many millennials and Gen Xers have better retirement readiness than their predecessors, because evolving regulations have helped them start saving earlier.

FIs that offer products and services that will facilitate faster, more efficient retirement savings could build and strengthen relationships with baby boomers by highlighting these offerings in targeted communications.

Generation X is sandwiched between competing financial priorities—and stressed: This generation also wants to save for retirement, but many are still supporting their children. 

  • Many Gen Xers also care for a parent, which has forced some to work only part-time and neglect their savings.
  • 60% of this generation say money has a negative fluence on their mental health, and 62% say they do not have sufficient emergency funds set aside.

FIs that offer products and services designed to reduce this generation's financial stress should highlight these in messaging that shows they understand this generation’s responsibilities.

Millennials want to catch up in homeownership: This generation lags behind older consumers when it comes to purchasing and owning their homes, and they’ve been quietly preparing to change that.

  • 26% of non-home-owning millennials have money set aside to buy a home—their average home fund savings is $46,560.51. 
  • Millennials are just waiting on interest rates to drop and supply to improve, and they’re about to.

FIs should target millennials with mortgage products and advice on how to reach their homeownership goals—but they should be careful to remain compliant with regulations if they offer mortgage discounts for special groups like first-time homebuyers.

Gen Z wants to get on the right track after many financial setbacks: The oldest Gen Zers are now 26, which means they’re still early in their financial journeys and careers.

  • However, they’ve encountered some major challenges right at the start of their journeys, such as pandemic-fueled unemployment, inflation, and rising debt.
  • Many Gen Zers are “very or extremely worried” about not having enough money, and they could use personalized advice to help them get their savings goals on track.

FIs should schedule discussions with their Gen Z customers about their financial goals—including how to achieve them. 

And banks don’t want to miss out on Gen Alpha: While most members of Gen Alpha are too young to have major financial goals for 2024, they’re a large market of potential customers that FIs should watch closely.

  • Just one in three teens has access to a bank account, which means over 1.32 billion Gen Alpha children have not yet started their banking journeys. 
  • This digitally native generation’s online behavior isn’t very different from their predecessors’—they lurk online, seeking bite-sized content, listen to podcasts regularly, and are looking for trusted content creators.
  • FIs can build early relationships with these young consumers by creating safe content in digital channels that Gen Alpha frequents. 

Key takeaways: Understanding each generation’s specific needs is paramount to a successful strategy that drives up deposits and savings while also improving customer loyalty and acquisition.

  • To supercharge their outreach, FIs can use generative AI to add a personal touch to marketing campaigns targeting each generation. This technology can help FIs quickly and easily process a vast amount of data identifying customer traits and behaviors, even aside from their age.

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