Watch Out Banks—Millennials Would Trust These Brands with Their Money

Young consumers don’t trust banks, and these are the brands they say they would trust with their finances instead…

Traditional banking is struggling with young consumers. The 2016 Millennial Disruption Index revealed that leading banks JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, and Wells Fargo are among the top ten least-loved brands by Millennials, and our personal finance survey found that 37% of 18-36-year-olds say they don’t trust banks. The generation’s predilection for digital financial solutions has made “Venmo” a verb, and they aren’t just using peer-to-peer payment apps for bar tabs. CNBC reports that rent, utilities, and vacation expenses like plane tickets are being charged via fintech services like Venmo as well. Venmo has also invaded online shopping, allowing users to pay with their account anywhere that already takes PayPal—like Lululemon and Home Depot. They’ve also introduced a debit card, inching them ever-closer to banking services. Of course, in the wake of this digital financial invasion, those traditional banks have banded together to introduce their own peer-to-peer competitor, Zelle—but fintech startups might not be the only competition they have to worry about.

That same Millennial Disruption Index found that 73% of Millennials would prefer to handle their financial needs through Google, Amazon, Apple, PayPal, or Square. This year, the Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon might offer “a checking account-like product” that would appeal to young consumers and those who don’t have bank accounts. They have reason to believe consumers would be interested: Thirty-eight percent of Amazon customers told LendEDU that they would trust the online retail giant with their finances as much as they would a traditional bank.

But beyond Amazon customers, would all young…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “I actively avoid discussions of TV shows.”—Male, 31, MI

Networks are launching an onslaught of new streaming services to compete with the likes of Netflix and Hulu. CBS, Disney, and now Warner Media are hopping on the bandwagon to compete for young cord-cutters' viewing time. The digital switch makes sense, considering 74% of 13-36-year-olds told Ypulse they watch Netflix weekly, versus 33% who watch cable weekly. But one eMarketer analyst predicts this over-saturation in the streaming wars will lead to “a shakeout," in which companies will be weeded out unless they consolidate their offerings. (THR)

Macy’s is putting virtual reality in 90 stores, with the “largest VR rollout in retail history.” Shoppers can don HTC Vive VR headsets to create 3D floor plans, design their living spaces, deck them out with Macy’s furniture, and then take a step inside of the room. The retail tech enables smaller Macy’s stores to offer a lot more inventory to shoppers, and follows in the footsteps of other reality-bending home décor brands. And, according to Macy’s, VR sales were 60% higher than regular sales in their three pilot stores. (MediaPost)

Prada is plotting a comeback among young consumers. They’ve been slow to adapt to digital, but now the luxury company is emphasizing Instagram and aiming to grow their online sales, which were just 5% in early 2018. While investors applaud Prada’s dive into digital, they also believe the brand needs to shutter several stores—not just to increase “profitability” but to create “the illusion of scarcity.” Prada also has to recover from being late to the luxury streetwear game. (Bloomberg)

Some teens are opting for technical school over four-year universities. At Queens Tech, high schoolers are trained to take on non-desk jobs, like being an electrical engineer or working for public transit companies. Earning a high paycheck that isn’t chipped away by student debt is helping to overcome the societal stigma of skipping college. According to one Queens Tech student, “If you’re a construction worker, you may get paid the same as a doctor, but you don’t look as good.” (Vice)

Don't expect to see macho men and swooning women in grooming brands' latest ads. Instead, companies across the industry are toning down the machismo for Millennial & Gen Z males. Some are blurring gender lines, like Dollar Shave Club, whose “Get Ready” spots debunked stereotypes by not just casting straight, cis males. Other brands are betting modern men are more in touch with their emotions, like Gillette, who shared the touching story of a man’s son becoming an NFL linebacker, despite missing one hand.
(Ad Age)

Quote of the Day: “[Zendaya] is such a beautiful human being and I grew up watching her on the Disney Channel.”—Female, 18, TX

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