Many industries are grappling with how to build loyalty among millennials, but perhaps none face as many challenges as the financial industry does. With an addiction to mobile and digital services, a voracious appetite for rewards programs and strong aversion to fees, Gen Y has left many financial institutions scratching their heads.

jack henry and associatesAs the industry tries to catch up to changing consumer demands, it’s not surprising that an Accenture survey of more than 4,000 retail banking consumers in the United States and Canada showed 18% of millennials switching from their primary bank in the previous 12 months.

While millennials want innovative and convenient ways to manage their money, they are still concerned about the safety and soundness of their finances, and they need help finding the happy medium. Credit unions should seize this opportunity to step in as trusted financial advisors to this segment.

In order to create raving fans out of millennials, credit unions must prove that they offer services that can’t be found more conveniently elsewhere, and that their technology meets millennials’ standards and keeps their money safe. This is especially important given Gen Y’s propensity to select a recognizable brand name when it comes to banking; a BancVue study found 81% of millennials surveyed indicated a recognizable brand name is important, and 25% believe community institutions don’t deliver the same level of benefits as their larger competitors.

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