Take a look on any social media or general interest site and you’ll find posts written by millennials complaining about the lack of education on how to manage finances, how to understand why and what insurance you need and how to apply for mortgages. It’s something that we’re never officially educated about, but it’s a pretty essential staple of life.
It’s a given that at more than one point in your life you will need at least one of these financial services and it can be hard to know where to start. The whole industry is daunting and confusing, and in response, more companies are looking to tailor their product experience to more closely align with Millennials knowledge or lack thereof.
Fintech startups for the younger generations
Millennials, in contrast to some of their predecessors, are known to question just about everything. From the food we eat to the clothes we wear to the products we use, we like to know the source and how it came to be. This is one of the key reasons why we are overall less trusting of banks and finance providers, as transparency isn’t always their bag.
Enter fresh-faced startups looking to transform the way we speak about and deal with money. From insurance to mortgages to banking, we’re not the same as the generations before us, so why should we settle for the same products? And that’s just why these rapidly growing companies have set out to alter the landscape of the financial industry, to ensure that Millennials don’t get left behind.
What is Monzo?
Monzo, founded in 2015, is a mobile-only bank based in the UK. It works like a prepaid debit card which allows users to better budget by importing funds from other accounts and creating limits. For Millennials, who are recognised as having much less money than other generations had at their age, this makes perfect sense.
Monzo is now adding more than 100,000 customers a month, with the internal team expanding rapidly to support this growth – with over 500 employees. They also boast a marketing team of over 12, who support the business growth through word-of-mouth and building community meet-ups.
Why do millennials love it?
The app-based bank has taken the banking scene by storm and is now valued at more than £1bn. The banking giant is cashing in on the millennial age group, who have lived through and seen the outcomes of significant financial crises and developments. The app is entirely based on smartphones, making it ideal for the generation who heavily utilise their phones to manage their work and social life. Teaming up with smartphone payment systems, Apple Pay and Google Pay, users can make payments without their cards present, using their phones to draw funds from their Monzo account.
Monzo truly understands its audience. the app includes tools that make budgeting easier and help the young customer-base consider their spending. The fintech company has built a digital bank that is ready to compete with the usual high street players by making the brand accessible and familiar.
The social component of Monzo, #YearInMonzo, summarises how users spent their money into key categories. Not only does this aim to help them understand what was spent where and assist in determining areas where cutbacks can be made, but it also makes for a great insight into Monzo customers as a whole.
What is Habito?
Founded four years ago, in the same year as Monzo, Habito was created to become the first robo-regulated digital mortgage adviser and broker. Habito’s core goal is to make mortgages less stressful, confusing and hellish. Through operating solely online, Habito provides extensive advice, geared towards a younger generation and offers the capability to search through mortgage deals by the thousands and obtain recommendations based on user data. They also utilise a chatbot to make the process more personalised and smart AI to ensure the experience is tailored to meet users specific needs.
The overall aim is to use technology to cut out the jargon and make it easier, quicker and overall better experience when applying for a mortgage. Habito is now preparing to launch its own range of mortgages into the UK market, later in 2019.
Not to mention their marketing materials are like no other in the industry. Video and print distributed by the brand are animated in a loud, vibrant and heavily dramatised manner – making them more relatable and eye-catching. Teaming with Californina-based artist, Jimbo Phillips, at the end of 2018, Habito was able to create truly unique and eye-catching illustrations that captured the stress of the traditional mortgage application process.
Why do millennials love it?
Habito gets the mortgage fear that the majority of Millennials have. They understand that Millennials witnessed the financial crash, they’ve seen their parents lose homes, money, investments, and jobs just over a decade ago. It’s no wonder they’re terrified to buy a property, let alone trawl through the confusion that is the mortgage industry.
Although we may have been relatively young during the recession, the learnings have left a lasting imprint. Millennials are driving the digital revolution in mortgages, demanding that mortgage providers make more of an effort to drop the jargon and provide good honest advice.
Habito conducted an extensive survey to highlight how mortgage processes in the UK are ‘antiquated’ and ‘archaic’, which results in millennials feeling genuinely fearful. Behind the death of a pet and being fired from work, getting a mortgage ranked third in ‘most stressful scenarios’ by Millennials.
Habito’s distinct understanding of this portion of the market allows them to tailor their services to answer questions, reduce jargon-strewn processes and improve the overall experience. The fintech company knows that this digital-native-generation prefer to access information and make purchases, so a mobile-first approach is crucial to driving engagement, digitising the application process and remaining competitive.
What is Dead Happy?
Death is a touchy subject, but news outlets recently questioned if readers would opt to buy life insurance from a company with a skull for a logo. They were referring to brand new pay-as-you-go life insurer; Dead Happy.
The brand sports a ‘trendy’ website, ‘quirky’ branding and a laughing skull as their logo (terminology lifted from This Is Money). However, for Millennials, a brand using a skull as a logo won’t feel overly unfamiliar or strange.
Why do millennials love it?
What makes Dead Happy different is their approach to life insurance. They brazenly ask users ‘what do you want to happen when you die?’ accompanied by Dia de Los Muertos inspired imagery to support the ‘so-called edgy’ approach – sorry Daily Mail readers. Not to mention the tone of voice is approachable and conversational rather than overly jargon-infested.
Users have the ability to make ‘death wishes’ which include some suggested ideas such as paying for your funeral, paying for someone else’s education, sending a mate shopping or on a holiday or any number of things. From the usual suggestions such as covering bills to ideas like erecting a bronze statue of yourself, Dead Happy aims to make thinking about your post-death responsibilities a little less morbid.
Although under it’s gimmicks, jokes, and modern design, Dead Happy is a life insurance provider. The difference lies entirely in their approach, making it more about your legacy than your death. Simplifying and humanising the process removes the money element from being the core focus and allows you to leave experiences and better other people’s lives, whether it’s people you know or a charitable donation after you’re gone.
The speedy, digital service utilises the popular pay-as-you-go formula, similar to any video streaming service, to align with how millennials use technology in their everyday lives. Friendly chat functions allow personalised feedback whilst the simplified approach makes the topic less daunting, less confusing and more flexibility through tailored and adjusting their policy whenever they need to.
Fintech for Millennials
Do you have a fintech product you want to use to tap into the Millennial and Gen Z market? If you’ve got a great app, service or product but you’re not sure how to make it stand out in your industry, then contact us today. We’ve worked with a bunch of fintech startups just like you and we’re always on the lookout for more fresh ideas to get off the ground.
Also published on Medium.