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Millennials aren’t like Boomers

Note: The following article was written by BLI instructor Peter Margaritis and originally appeared on his blog, “The Accidental Accountant.” View the original version of this article here.

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Not a news flash, but those twenty- and thirty-something clients you have are not like you. Their expectations are very different, and firms that proactively work to meet those expectations will be advantaged. So how big are the differences? In some cases, very big.

Marketing
If you think print ads, billboards or an outdated website are the way to go, you are way off base. Millennials look for online testimonials (their version of personal referrals). They want a well-designed website using current mobile technology and up-to-date information. They use their smartphones and tablets to access information more than a desktop computer – be sure your site matches their needs. If you site looks outdated, they will not stay.

What about social media – you don’t like it much? They do. There are multiple ways to connect with them online. Do some research and pick one or two outlets to start with, then grow from there. Freely sharing information is a great way to get connected and stay connected with millennials. They search online for everything from medical advice to investment advice; if you’re not participating the in online conversations, you will not get their attention.

Communication
Text and e-mail are constants in their lives. Getting back to a millennial e-mail the next day is kind of rude. They have grown up with immediate feedback and response. Set a guideline that all emails received by say 5 pm are responded to that day, even if it is just “get the answer for you tomorrow.” Texting is actually more important to them than emails – and response time is even more critical.

Use online tools to send and receive documents. Take payments online (or at least via phone). I know many millennials that haven’t written an actual check in years!

Group communication via videoconferencing is standard for them. Coming to your office for a meeting, not so much. Look into tools that work for you and are convenient for the user.

One more very important thing: Learn more about this very important client base before they go to another firm. They are not afraid to jump ship and go to a firm that meets their needs.

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