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What young people want from fintech

Lessons from ten episodes of Millennial Money Matters.

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I’m now ten episodes deep with my new(ish) podcast: Millennial Money Matters. It’s a show about new financial technologies and why young people should care about them. Episode ten, which is about an insurance fintech called Brolly, will be published on Monday. 

The show has been pretty heavy on the fintech so far, featuring such well-known names as Monzo,Revolut,Moneybox,Scalable Capital and Funding Circle. In the future I anticipate spreading the net more widely to encompass high street banking apps, tax wrapper platforms, and so on.

Every episode features a founder interview and an interview with a young person who gives their first impression of the tech-in-question. These millennial interviews have turned up some fascinating user insights. And given that the first ten episodes have all been about fintech, I figured now would be a good time to take stock of what young people want to see from the fintech industry.

All the quotes below come from “the millennial”, who is voiced by a different young person each episode.  

Keep it simple, but not simplistic

“They (Plum) use a lot of emoticons, they use a lot of hashtags. They use YOLO in their FAQs quite a lot… I think it’s a bit embarrassing, isn’t it? It’s a bit patronising.”

“I’m all for simplifying things but when you compare it to the language of something like Monzo, which is simple, sort of colloquial, friendly, but not peppered with emojis all the time – I just think that’s a bit much.”

“The first things that came to mind were how accessible it (Scalable Capital) is, how efficient it is, how simple it is. Usually with these kinds of things, there’s so much information that you’re overloaded with, and I was really impressed with how simple it was to understand. Especially with the app when I was signing up: it was literally a five minute thing.”

Chatbots could be more… chatty

“I think chatbot is a little bit generous! … It only responds to very basic commands.”

“When I signed up it mentioned this new feature, which I thought was quite exciting: that embedded in the software was the ability to invest your money in property investments via Bricklane… I was interested by that and I asked Rita how I could actually sign up to this and put some money in, but she had to sign me over to a live agent.”

Control should be a choice

“If you’re a control freak like me, you can go on and swipe – because I like to see how much I’m saving.”

“For me, I love it (Plum), because I’ve tried the active in the past and I’m just awful and the reason is because I have no idea how much I can afford to save… It just takes that stress out of it.”

Making the leap

“I find that I have a certain amount of inertia with all these new financial products. I love the look of them, but it takes a lot for me to jump.”

“I also came across NatWest’s robo-advisor, which was very similar, but the initial start-up was £500. And obviously NatWest, with the reputation that it has, and the fact that I do my retail banking with them, I would be a lot more inclined to actually go ahead and use NatWest.

The deeper the integration, the better

“I had to leave the app, which I never really like… So I don’t know how closely this integration has gone, basically.”

Keep the barriers low

“That is one thing that I was going to bring up about Revolut… You actually have to pay for the delivery of your physical card… That was one thing which I initially thought was a negative.”

“You have to sync with your bank and that was a little bit fiddly – took a while… I could see how people might lose patience with it (Pariti).”

“I also liked how it was really easy to login, I just needed my finger print. I didn’t have to memorise three different passwords, which is usually what you have to do for banking apps.”

Actionable insights make a big impact

“It (Monzo) does the budgeting really well. So, for example, I clicked on TFL and I found out that it’s not worth me getting a monthly oyster card because I spend less than the cost of it each month.”

Long way to go

“The ideal for these sorts of things (digital banks) is that you are going to be using them as your primary bank account.”

“I asked first could I connect my virtual Revolut card to Apple Pay… Rita told me in her own way that I couldn’t.”

“I don’t like the fact that they (Monzo) doesn’t have Apple Pay… For me it’s quite important. I’m very forgetful, so sometimes I leave my wallet at home and Apple Pay is really useful… I think because it’s targeted at millennials, Apple Pay would be a really good add-on.”

“I didn’t like that it’s not a full bank. I would still have to use another bank. I can’t just have Loot… I don’t really like to have multiple accounts, I’d like to have just one account and that’s it.”

You can subscribe to the show via both SoundCloud and iTunes

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