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How Your Credit Union Can Reach and Inspire Gen Z

8 July, 2022

Say what you will about Gen Z and their TikTok humor; it doesn't change the fact that "Zoomers" are coming into their own, professionally and financially. In recent years, Generation Z—those born between the mid-90s and 2010—has entered the workforce and become one of the fastest-growing consumer demographics. Bank of America even predicts that by 2031, Gen Z incomes will be higher than those of Millennials.

Remarkably, though, fewer than 47 percent of Gen Zers report having a bank account!

This is, of course, a great opportunity—if your credit union can convince Gen Z that you have something to offer a group of people who have decided they might not need traditional banking. Here are some things you’ll want to think about if you want to speak Gen Z:

Mobile

People roll their eyes at how much time Gen Z spends on their phones, but this is a generation of "digital natives" who have had mobile devices their whole lives. Don't expect them to walk into your bank branch: 99 percent of Gen Z use a mobile banking app for viewing account balances, checking their credit score, and depositing checks. To reach this generation, your credit union needs a mobile app that is full-featured and easy to use.

Values

Nearly half of Gen Zers say they choose brands that align with their own personal values. As a credit union, you're likely rooted in your community and actively working toward social good. Don't be afraid to let Gen Z know what you believe. If you are committed to diversity and equity or taking steps to fight climate change, make sure to say so—and not just in press releases and traditional media. If you can engage in places like TikTok and Twitch, this generation will notice. 

Financial Education

When it comes to financial literacy, Generation Z has been left out in the cold: most of them have never received any form of formal education about personal finance. But they are hungry to learn: 39 percent of Gen Zers say they want guidance in money management from trusted financial institutions. If you can provide good, clear, useful financial advice to Gen Z, then this can win that trust. 

At Vibrant, it's our job to understand demographic trends and help our clients make the most of them—and we believe this is a great moment for credit unions to connect with a whole generation. If you want to reach this largely untapped audience, we can help.

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