71% of millennials would rather visit their dentist than listen to their bank.1 Which is quite a big problem, seeing that by 2030, millennials will account for 53% of the population.

This generation are clearly disconnected with many of the old-school institutions and products they come across. They are not brand loyal, they think that all banks are the same, and most are open to switching banks depending on what’s on offer.

Riding the wave of changing attitudes is a range of new players – entering the market and shaking it up in a way that’s threatening traditional banking models. These include retailers, telcos, fintechs and technology giants.

Their approach is to disrupt what has long been a very conservative industry by taking cues from other digital innovators such as Uber, Amazon and Airbnb. These brands understand their customers, speak their language and give them what they want – all built around a seamless and satisfying digital experience that delivers new levels of service, speed and convenience.

33% of millennials believe they won’t even need a bank within the next five years.1 This is a pretty alarming statistic and shows that banks need to act quickly to retain and acquire further millennials.

Connecting with the always-on generation

For millennials, technology isn’t just a part of life, it’s how they experience life. Never without their phone, they use mobile banking nearly three times more than other generations.2

Like all of us, millennials value their time and want to make every moment count. They want every task to be as simple as possible. Because of the brands they choose to interact with, millennials are used to a flawless customer experience and their digital expectations are high.

69% of millennials expect to see an application approved within an hour, 90% thought a response on the same day was acceptable and only 6% would be satisfied if approval took 3 days.3 When millennials communicate with their bank, 30% want to receive SMS alerts while 28% prefer push notifications through their app.3

Not surprisingly, financial institutions are realising they need to change the way banking is done, and not a minute too soon. Having an app that lets customers manage their money with just a few taps any time, anywhere is a given for everyday banking. But what banks really need to do is look at their overall offering and develop a unified and seamless experience that lets customers do as much as they can online in a few simple steps.

Adopting a millennial mindset to money

To show they really “get” millennials, financial institutions need to go much further than personalised communications. They need to understand this market, tap into their mindset and see what matters to them most when it comes to their money.

This generation is more financially insecure than other generations due to things like an increasingly part-time job market, student debt and rising property prices, coupled with an entrepreneurial approach to creating wealth. This in itself provides an opportunity to develop uniquely personalised experiences that will empower millennials to manage their money and save – whether it’s to walk the Great Wall of China or create a fulfilling future.

One area where millennial-centric marketing is making waves is in the Super space – with a new breed of tech-focused companies making headlines such as Spaceship, which attracted over 12,000 people in its first month and boasts a sign-up process that takes just 5 minutes. While Spaceship has differentiated itself well, this behaviour is still eye-opening, especially when the company has no track record as a super provider – something which would normally demand high levels of expertise and trust.

Other Super initiatives that have been developed to align more with millennial values include the launch of Future Super, which is Australia’s first fossil-free Super fund and Human Super, aimed just at women.

The “meh” generation will save us all

As millennials gradually take over the workforce, and the world, addressing their expectations and needs should be a priority for all financial institutions. This won’t only enhance the overall customer experience, increase retention and overall profitability, but make the way we engage with money better for us all. So what is your organisation doing to speak to millennials?



  1. Digital Banking Report, The Millennial Mind https://www.digitalbankingreport.com/dbr/dbr244/
  2. The 2017 Deloitte Millennial Study, Apprehensive millennials: seeking stability and opportunities in an uncertain world https://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/global/Documents/About-Deloitte/gx-deloitte-millennial-survey-2017-executive-summary.pdf
  3. The Millennial Disruption Index http://www.millennialdisruptionindex.com/

Written by: Margot Cotter-Melton I Managing Partner                                                                                                                                  For further information please contact  I 0418 421 043 I margot@thepureagency.com.au