While crippling student debt, high unemployment rates, and a recovering economy have put a damper on wealth outlook for Millennials, a notable portion of the generation is actually doing quite well for itself. As a matter of fact, a recent report from the Shullman Research Center found that 23% (roughly five million) of millionaires are actually Millennials; more than the total of Generation X millionaires, which stands at about four million, and about half that of Baby Boomers, a generation that had a 30-year head start.
When considering future ambitions, 49% of Millennials plan to pursue a wealthy lifestyle, compared to 6% of Generation Xers and 14% of Boomers – a staggering difference. A more immediate outlook reveals that 82% plan to spend on luxury items over the next year, once again blowing the two previous generations out of the water at 58% and 32%, respectively.
As the largest generation the country has ever seen continues to grow up and acquire more wealth, luxury brands are going to have to start adjusting their message to better reflect Millennial values.
Do Social Good
There was a time when giving back was an exception for brands, not a norm. That relationship has now been turned on its head. Luxury brands that have not gotten the message yet will have to change soon if they have any hope of reaching Millennial millionaires. Millennials have shown that concepts like corporate social responsibility play a large role in their purchasing decisions and brand loyalty. Luxury brands cannot rely on status alone to make an impression. It would behoove them to advertise the fact that they care about factors such as the environment, poverty, or children.
Embrace Quality of Life
Making your way to millionaire status at a young age obviously comes with its share of working after hours. However, luxury brands should still try to take advantage of the Millennial mindset, which encompasses a desire for greater flexibility and a fair work/life balance. By helping make this possible, whether it be through creating tools via mobile apps or offering services that make life easier, brands can become synonymous with ease and relaxation – especially for the millionaire on the go.
This mostly applies to service industries, such as financial advising or accounting – although it can be practiced by any type of business. Millionaire Millennials have money to spend and invest. Unfortunately, Millennials as a whole have been scarred by the financial crisis. This has made them very cautious when it comes to trusting others with their money, whether it is put into an investment vehicle or a physical product. Brands can counter this by being completely up front about their practices and what they stand for. Don’t be shy to show how your product works, where money is going, or possible negatives that come with your product. It will be appreciated and could lead to deeper trust in your brand.
Millennials account for 80 million members of the United States population. As they continue to make a name for themselves and build wealth, luxury brands will have to not only shift their focus, but adjust their material. By tapping into the Millennial psyche, and therefore many of America’s future millionaires, brands will be giving themselves a head start on creating loyalty among the future’s wealthiest individuals.