The digital generation represents an important emerging market for financial services firms—this was clear when we first surveyed Generation D investors in North America. We extended our existing research on digital trends in financial advice to Europe, where we surveyed 1,200 investors to determine their attitudes, behaviors and preferences for digital in their existing relationships.
What we found when speaking to these investors was that there’s significant opportunity for firms that offer digital technology, particularly around filling gaps in investor knowledge, augmenting the existing relationship and improving investor satisfaction with their advisors and institutions.
Read this paper—the first in our three-part series—to find out what the wealth management industry can learn about the powerful Gen D investor group.
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We sought to understand where and how digital may be best incorporated into the existing services model. Some of our key findings include:
Traditional means of contact are preferred. More than 70 percent of investors perceive face-to-face as the most important way to interact with their advisors.
Investors across Europe report being less informed about investing than they would prefer. In fact, 68 percent of Gen D respondents stated they are neutral or lack knowledge about investing.
Knowledge is key to investor engagement. Knowledgeable investors reported holding a broader range of investment products and securities, regardless of affluence level.
Digital tools are being used for high-value activities, such as financial planning, and are emerging as a critical supplement to firms’ overall portfolio of services. Some 27 percent of respondents indicated they have switched financial institutions to obtain a digital tool, service, channel or application that their current institution did not offer.
Higher-value tools that assist investors with educating themselves outrank transactional tools such as bill pay. A notable amount of Gen D investors expressed interest in do-it-yourself digital tools, such as simulators and advisor-connected offerings.
Digital service is an important component in the emerging value proposition—it is not just the future of investing, but the present.
To help firms and advisors satisfy investors’ desire for more personalized service and speed, Accenture recommends several questions that should be considered:
Are you providing the content that makes autonomous and self-directed investors comfortable with their options?
Do your emerging channels for financial advice measure up to the standards that investors have come to expect from other aspects of their digital lives?
Are you fostering novel forms of investor engagement, such as game play?
Are your tools aligned to the right investor segments?