Updated: May 17, 2019
Being independent, preferring experiences, looking for diversity, fearing missing out on important information (FOMO)...
These are just some of the characteristic traits of the Millennials and Generation Z. These groups are likely to contribute not only to the development of the cryptocurrency market, but also determine the future of the economy and perhaps a cashless society. The
Millennials and Generation Z are building the future of cryptocurrencies
According to the report by TNS which I run while working at Luno, a global platform allowing to purchase and exchange cryptocurrencies, Europeans usually learn about cryptocurrencies from social media (40-60% depends on which country). Research by Metricso for Luno (also on various European markets) shows that cryptocurrencies are the most popular among people under the age of 24, who have only recently started earning their own living, and people aged 25–34. What’s more, interest in the subject diminishes with age. The results show that we can expect major changes in payment methods and the economy in the coming years. According to advocates of cryptocurrencies, Generation Z may become the first cashless generation. This was the most extensively researched in the United States, where the cryptocurrency market is growing the fastest. The results clearly show that the Millennials love cryptocurrencies! They keenly invest in crypto, make payments and even keep them as long-term investments. In the survey carried out by Finder, 1 in 12 respondents admit they hold some sort of cryptocurrency. The proportion will be growing steadily because the American digital currency market belongs to the young and may affect the economy in the coming years. As many as 17.21% Millennials hold cryptocurrencies, which is largely a country-wide statistic. Those who do not invest in this market consider it too difficult to understand and complicated to use. The situation will change, however, and soon cryptocurrencies may be used on a daily basis. According to YouGov, almost half of the Millennials believe that cryptocurrencies in the near future may find wider application and will be accepted by the general public. Millennials are not only independent from their parents, but also from state institutions. The Blockchain Capital study revealed a trend that as many as 30% of adults under the age of 34 prefer investing in cryptocurrencies to investing in treasury bonds and stocks. As they gain more and more independence, they trust banks and pension systems less. 5% of the Millennials consider Bitcoin to be the safest investment for the future and a long-term saving option with a horizon of 10+ years. The approach to cryptocurrencies translates not only to finances, but also affects interpersonal relationships. As many as 3 in 4 Millennials would rather date a person who has some idea about the cryptocurrency market rather than someone who doesn’t know anything about it.
The world of finance through the eyes of Generation Y and Z
New technologies have radically changed not only the methods of payment, but also the society’s approach to finance in general. Young people are constantly looking for modern solutions that enhance the quality of life. They prefer investing in cryptocurrencies, and would rather rent a flat than buy one. They are also more and more interested in start-ups and alternative solutions. They take advantage of all of the available conveniences as well as new technologies and still want more. They strive for full democratization and decentralization of power. The ability to control their money without intermediaries, such as banks, encourages Millennials to make bolder decisions, even if they involve high risk. A study commissioned by Luno shows that people interested in the cryptocurrency market are also interested in virtual payment cards and mobile apps, such as Revolut, Monzo. Among the youngest, crowdfunding and managing money with mobile apps are also popular, e.g. Seedrs, Kickstarter.
‘Platformation’ of the society - Users, not owners
The 21st century has also brought a dynamic transition from the analogue world to multimedia. Generation Z brought up in the Internet age, can no longer imagine living life offline. Running out of the data allowance on the smartphone can really be a problem. We’re moving most of our activity to the virtual ecosystem. It’s comprised of global and local platforms that influence social life, our behaviour, new technologies, business models, civic movements and even culture. Instead of buying a car, one can order an Uber or BlaBlaCar. We no longer watch TV, but instead only get our information online from platforms such as Upworty, BuzzFeed News or Huffington Post. Our healthy lifestyle is taken care of by none other than Google Fit or Apple’s HealthKit. You can also study without leaving your home, via edX, OpenClassrooms or Coursera. Why buy a CD if you can listen to music on Spotify or iTunes, and watch your favourite series on Netflix, HBO GO or Showmax. There are plenty of possibilities and they are present all around us. The Millennials and Generation Z do not focus on possession, but on usability and experience. That’s how the sharing economy idea was created, which is essentially an economy that allows us to rent or lease other people’s goods. The best examples are the eBay auction website and Airbnb, which allows to share accommodation with others, like an unused flat, room or even a couch. The driving force for sharing economy services are the Millennials, who were born in the era of rapid expansion of modern technologies. Among the main advantages of online platforms for the users are attractive price, large selection and better access. What’s more, as many as 98% of people that use digital communication tools every day consider new technologies to have had a positive impact on their lives.