May 19, 2020

Marketing to Millennials: Gaining the trust of a cynical generation

financial services
Brad Sherman
Tomás H. Lucero
3 min

Millennials watched Bernie Madoff walked off in handcuffs for setting up one of the largest Ponzi schemes in Wall Street history. They’re not eager to trust financial services institutions to manage their wealth. Nevertheless, like generations before and after them, they will age and must prepare for the future. At one time or another, they will be interested in wealth management financial services. In a recent Wall Street Journal column, Voices, wealth manager Brad Sherman discusses millennials’ needs and how to meet them.

 According to Sherman, as a result of Madoff-like financials scandals, it takes longer to gain the trust of millennials and that to earn it marketers need to meet them on their terms.

“Start by being relatable. Meet them on their turf. Millennials are comfortable with using technology to communicate, to research and to learn. You can use traditional modes of marketing, but it is imperative you engage with millennials through the Internet and social media,” says Sherman

Sherman asserts that it’s crucial to have a strong Internet and social media presence as you work at building a relationship based on trust with millennials.

“Make sure you have a current website and a presence on LinkedIn and Twitter because this is where you will make connections. Put your best foot forward on these platforms. Even if you were referred to them by someone they know, millennials will vet you by reading your website, your LinkedIn profile, and your tweets on Twitter,” he advises.

Sherman also thinks that the content most relevant to millennials will offer them basic financial education, which they didn’t get in school. Topics like “What is an IRA?” and personal finance 101 are such that millennials will be readily interested in.

“Financial planning was not something this demographic learned in school, so many of my topics are personal finance 101: help with budgeting, tackling student loan debt, managing finances, merging finances with a spouse or partner, and planning for a first home. I have also found that many millennials are working for entrepreneurial-type companies that don’t necessarily have a retirement program for their employees, so it’s helpful to present basic retirement topics, like explaining what an IRA is,” he explains.

Reminding his audience that millennials are a wary generation due to recent financial chaos as well as the student debt burden, Sherman concludes his column by emphasizing the importance of building trust and communicating through the technologies that millennials are familiar with.

“Once you’ve gained their trust and they’ve vetted you, don’t drop the ball. Continue nurturing your relationship with them. Be transparent and concise about what you offer. Be flexible and be ready to engage with them using the technologies they are comfortable with. For example, if their busy schedules make it too difficult to schedule an in-office face-to-face meeting, set up a meeting on Skype,” he concludes.  

Related Story: 4 Ways Millennials Have Transformed the Consumer Landscape

Related Story: 2 Millennial Marketing Principles: Location and Convenience

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Jun 21, 2021

How AWS helps NASCAR delight its fans

3 min
Customer obsession and working backwards from the customer is a mantra of Amazon Web Services (AWS), epitomizing its partnership with NASCAR

AWS needs no introduction to readers of Technology Magazine but we rarely get an opportunity to look closely at how it serves the sports sector. All major sports draw in a huge supporter base that they want to nurture and support. Technology is the key to every major sports organization and enabling this is the driving force for AWS, says Matt Hurst, Head of Global Sports Marketing and Communications for AWS. “In sports, as in every industry, machine learning and artificial intelligence and high performance computing are helping to usher in the next wave of technical sports innovation.”

AWS approaches sports in three principal areas. “The first is unlocking data’s potential: leagues and teams hold vast amounts of data and AWS is enabling them to analyze that data at scale and make better, more informed decisions. The second is engaging and delighting fans: with AWS fans are getting deeper insights through visually compelling on-screen graphics and interactive Second Screen experiences. And the third is rapidly improving sports performance: leagues and teams are using AWS to innovate like never before.”

Among the many global brands that partner with AWS are Germany's Bundesliga, the NFL, F1, the NHL, the PGA Tour and of course NASCAR. NASCAR has worked with AWS on its digital transformation (migrating it's 18 petabyte video archive containing 70 years of historical footage to AWS), to optimize its cloud data center operations and to enable its global brand expansion. AWS Media Services powers the NASCAR Drive mobile app, delivering broadcast-quality content for more than 80 million fans worldwide. The platform, including AWS Elemental MediaLive and AWS Elemental MediaStore, helps NASCAR provide fans instant access to the driver’s view of the race track during races, augmented by audio and a continually updated leaderboard. “And NASCAR will use our flagship machine learning service Amazon SageMaker to train deep learning models to enhance metadata and video analytics.”

Using AWS artificial intelligence and machine learning, NASCAR aims to deliver even more fan experiences that they'd never have anticipated. “Just imagine a race between Dale Earnhardt Sr and Dale Jr at Talladega! There's a bright future, and we're looking forward to working with NASCAR, helping them tap into AWS technology to continue to digitally transform, innovate and create even more fan experiences.”

Just as AWS is helping NASCAR bridge that historical gap between the legacy architecture and new technology, more customers are using AWS for machine learning than any other provider. As an example, who would have thought five years ago that NFL would be using  ML to predict and prevent injury to its players? Since 2017, the league has utilized AWS as its official cloud and ML provider for the NFL Next Gen Stats (NGS) platform, which provides real-time location data, speed, and acceleration for every player during every play on every inch of the field. “One of the most potentially revolutionary components of the NFL-AWS partnership,” says Matt Hurst, “is the development of the 'Digital Athlete,' a computer simulation model that can be used to replicate infinite scenarios within the game environment—including variations by position and environmental factors, emphasizing the league's commitment to player safety.”

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