In “Gen D and the Economy,” we revealed how the financial and economic crisis has shaken the digital generation’s trust in the financial services industry. Today, we are discussing how members of Gen D approach client-advisor relationships.

Advisor selection

Members of the digital generation are willing to outsource their financial well-being to an extent—but only to a trusted professional that prioritizes their goals over investment firm interests. The ideal financial advisor is a responsive resource that can provide insights, offer personalized advice and execute transactions when, where and how the Gen D investor wants.

Gen X and Boomer investors are looking for a guide to help them navigate the financial world—a “real person” rather than a faceless firm. Millennial investors are looking for information and educational tools—such as a website, an app or a course—that will prepare and empower them to enter the world of investing.

Client-advisor interaction

Advisors must earn the trust of Gen X and Boomer investors through face-to-face meetings and proven performance. These investors are open to a variety of channels, but prefer to limit online interactions to minor matters and not engage advisors using social media.

Millennial investors also desire face-to-face relationships with their financial advisors, but are open to interacting online once trust has been established. Despite their heavy use of the Internet and social media, they are hesitant to share personal information with advisors and view the relationship as a business collaboration at best.

Join us next week when we conclude our “Gen D in Focus” series by suggesting ways that financial services companies can engage the digital generation.

In May 2012, Accenture launched a research project to gather insights into “Generation D” investors and advisors—Millennials, Gen-Xers and Boomers who depend increasingly on digital interactions. “Gen D in Focus” is a four-part blog series that reveals highlights from our July 2012 focus groups. These initial findings will be explored and refined further using quantitative techniques.

Learn more about the research project

Read other posts in the series: