CMO: A Portrait Of The Modern Consumer – Financial Services For The YOLO Generation

Sean Rach

CMO of

Consumer attitudes, values, and lifestyles today are vastly different from what they were just a decade ago. A new generation with little connection to the analog past, Millennials are redefining how businesses operate and how brands connect with consumers.

For the modern consumer, shopping is not just about getting hold of the final product, but the entire experience of getting there – from first laying eyes on a fashion blogger’s outfit to searching up the best deals on various websites and finally, sealing the deal with the click of a button.

Their attitudes on financial services, their spending habits, and lifestyle preferences are not only integrated, but the expectation is for them to be seamless.

The seismic shift in consumer demands has been driven by a number of socio-economic factors like rising housing costs and fierce competition – all of which are significantly shaping their values. With long term goals like buying a home seemingly out of reach, many consumers are taking a ‘You Only Live Once’ (YOLO) approach to their life choices, spending, and finances.

Digital double-lifers who live for the moment

Modern millennial consumers are digital natives who think fast and seek seamless experiences online and offline. Spending an average of nearly four hours a day on the internet and making over 50 percent of their total purchases online, millennials’ online personas are an extension of who they are.

It is no surprise then that they are increasingly prioritizing experiences over material goods – intangibles like a spontaneous weekend getaway which they can share with their friends and family through multiple social media channels – where they live their lives, virtually.

This is not to say millennials have stopped indulging in material goods altogether, but there is a change in the way they procure these things. Born into a world with easy access to anything anyone could possibly desire and an endless stream of information, millennials naturally crave quick rewards and the best deals. They desire instant gratification – things that are fast, convenient and satisfying so they can maximize their gains for the least amount of time and effort spent.

After a dinner date at a trendy restaurant, the modern millennial consumer doesn’t think twice before whipping out their phone and calling an Uber to get back home rather than trudging alone in the metro. If there is an easier and faster option then, why not take it? And while waiting for that Uber, these social media spenders might just make a last minute purchase!

Financial services in the YOLO era

In the eyes of these modern millennial consumers, time and effort spent on canceling an annoying subscription is not worth the cost. With limited attention spans and a constant feeling of ‘Fear Of Missing Out’ (FOMO), they shift their attention to multiple channels on different gadgets like laptops, smartphones, tablets, and television up to 27 times per hour!

These lifestyle characteristics, as highlighted above, have altered their spending, shopping habits, and expectations from financial services.

Traditional financial service providers can no longer attract the modern millennial consumer without giving them the power to control their own finances. From offering a purely digital banking experience to the option to use virtual money, financial service providers must create a smooth “un-bank” experience which integrates well with the lifestyle preferences of digital natives who want to avoid standing in ATM lines, much less waiting on hold for a call center’s response.

What’s more, by leveraging cryptocurrencies, it is possible to give modern millennial consumers who are always on the go, the ability to transact in their own terms without worrying about layers of hard to understand fees, latency or difficulties of cross-border transactions which are characteristic of traditional banks.

When building products at, we understand the need to cater to these changing tastes and habits of consumers and make dealing with finances a seamless part of life rather than a time-consuming and troublesome add on task.

Financial service providers which cater to the demands of the modern millennial consumers for a fast, seamless, and hassle-free banking experience will be the ones shaping the future of banking for the YOLO generation. To remain competitive and relevant, financial services and products will have to be tailored to these consumers and supplement their lifestyles with personalisation, perks, and convenience.

Sean Rach, CMO of

Sean Rach is Chief Marketing Officer at and is responsible for building and promoting’s global brand and establishing the company as a thought leader and innovator in the industry. Sean has enjoyed a career as both a CMO in financial services and the leader of an integrated marketing consultancy. Active in the marketing community, he has served as the Chairman (Asia Pacific) of the Mobile Marketing Association.