Market to Minors

By Hanis, Monique | Independent Banker, July 1997 | Go to article overview

Market to Minors


Hanis, Monique, Independent Banker


Remember the needs of younger customers-and their parents'

Much marketing attention is focused today on the unprecedented transfer of wealth occurring between older parents and their adult offspring. But the underage set could be one of the most overlooked marketing opportunities in banking-especially considering the relationships their parents or grandparents bring to the bank as well. It is definitely worth your while to review (or establish) your bank's marketing plans to reach customers under 18 years old.

Besides establishing relationships early on with tomorrow's customers, your secondary goals in targeting youth may include improving the public's knowledge of financial services, developing a pool of potential bank employees and greater public recognition of your bank.

GREAT BEGINNINGS

It's a given that you will have to make first contact with the parents of this market segment; so why not begin at the beginning?

These days new parents tend to think far ahead about the financial responsibilities of starting a family, often before their babies arrive. Consider this a terrific opportunity to offer investment planning services through your trust department. Parents want to know how to set up savings and college funds and about investment options. They also may have some pressing credit needs.

How do you find these prospects? Obstetricians, hospital maternity wards, prenatal classes, day care providers and local retail outlets-fast food restaurants, toy stores and clothing stores-cater to this group. Use these resources as distribution networks to promote your special products and programs.

New parents are showered with gifts and samples from baby products manufacturers and other suppliers. Take the example from such successful retailers as Proctor & Gamble and Olin Mills Photographers, and offer your own flair. Open an account with a gift balance ($10 to $20 is probably worth a new family relationship), give away porcelain piggy banks or issue savings bonds to celebrate the birth-and hopefully bring in the parents' business. …

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