As of 2019, millennials surpassed baby boomers as the largest generation of adults in the U.S., according to Pew Research Center, that is roughly 73 million millennials in the U.S.
As older millennials head into their peak earning years, they start families, purchase homes, and make more complex buying decisions. Millennials, unlike GenXer’s and Baby Boomers, can be somewhat complex, in my opinion. Oftentimes, referred to as the “me” generation, Millennials have created their own set of rules, and like it or not, we all have to live by them!
Let’s take a look at who they are:
The Millennial generation was born between 1980 and the end of 1994.
They were born in the tech era, so it stands to reason they are tech-savvy.
According to the most recent Census, the number of stay-at-home fathers in the United States has tripled in the past ten years
Work-life balance is of the highest priority to Millennials, according to the US Chamber of Commerce.
They are more culturally diverse.
Millennials are getting married later in life.
Millennials are more educated and ultimately more in debt.
More Millennials live at home.
Millennials are savvy savers.
So how exactly do we sell this complex group Life Insurance?
Some view life insurance a lot like other generations, and they have similar concerns when purchasing insurance, yet others are a bit more resistant, we will look at the ladder later.
More than half of millennials care most about getting coverage for a great price, while only 31% want the lowest price even if it means getting a basic policy, this would be the “savvy savers.”
Millennials tend to worry more about future risks than others, with 38% saying they constantly worry about “what-if” and “probability” scenarios, this is where being a good storyteller comes in handy. Share stories of how insurance coverage helped other clients from a loss of a home or further putting them in debt, as a way of demonstrating your expertise and selling the value of a policy. (if you don’t have a story, borrow one, it’s okay).
With a strong need to be informed due to their lack of understanding of insurance, Millennials want to know that you are listening to their concerns and they want to be walked through policy options, helping ease potential misunderstandings. They also want to know more details than we as agents think they do. Remember, they are super-savers and very educated, so they want to make sure they are making a good decision for their money.
Unlike GenXer’s or Baby Boomers, Millennials want to know insurance terminology, policy details, what to expect if they have a claim, and the unique features of their policy in greater detail before purchasing.
One LIMRA Research study showed that 65% of Americans without life insurance think coverage will be too expensive. In general, about 4 out of 5 Americans overestimated the cost of life insurance premiums, with the largest group being Millennials.
They were asked what they thought the average cost of a $250,000 term life policy for a 30-year-old man (non-smoker with no health problems) would be.
The responses were:
44% of Millennials thought that the policy was likely to cost more than $1,000 a year.
17% of Millennials thought that the policy was likely to cost from $500 to $1,000.
13% of Millennials thought that the policy was likely to cost from $300 to $500.
The truth is that the average cost is about $160, which can certainly be used to your advantage to help them see the actual vs. the perceived cost.
So how do we get them to look away from their cell phones and tablets long enough to have the conversation? Actually, we don’t, huh? We plant the seeds where they will see them ... the internet and Social Media!
75.2% have a Facebook page
73.7% use LinkedIn
28.5% use Twitter
84.7% use an iPhone or other smartphone
44% use an iPad or other tablet device
More than 27% of millennials said they learned about an agent through digital engagement such as online search, reviews, and social media (compared with 18 percent of GenXer’s and 12% of boomers). And while Baby Boomers choose an agent based mostly on the agent’s location and which companies they represent, millennials put more merit in online reviews, social media engagement, the agent’s website, and online chat capabilities.
Now for the ladder
If they are a single millennial living at home, they still need Life Insurance, here is why!
Although the numbers have increased greatly since Covid-19, it is estimated that roughly 21.6 million millennials are living with their parents according to the Analysis of U.S. Census Bureau, which is the highest share in at least four decades.
This group unfortunately is the hardest to sell as it's their belief if they are home, they don’t need Life Insurance, they could be further from the truth.
The key selling points here are, if they are likely to have a car, credit cards, and/or student loans, all of which could have been co-signed by their parents, that being the case if they were to die all of these debts would be passed to them.
That’s why It is up to us to show them the value and why they need it now!
In a world of Covid-19 coupled with their innate tech-savvy abilities, if we can capture their attention and show them the value they need to see and inspire trust this is a market you are sure to win.
Sources: Safer America, Brian Beltz, October 25, 2018; Mutual of Omaha, Term Answers; Thrillist, By Lee Breslouer, Updated on 11/11/2020; Pew Research Center, 2017, 2018; U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, 2012