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Financial education is taking over TikTok

Gen Z has grown up with a high degree of digital comfort – this includes learning about banking products from snackable videos made by “finfluencers.”

May 17, 2023 / Marketing & Sales

Just when you thought TikTok was only about challenges, songs and memes, the social media platform has proven itself far more influential. Today, it’s a rising star in the financial literacy world.

TikTok has become a destination to learn more about everything from cryptocurrency and IRAs to 401(k)s and Wall Street trading. This phenomenon has spurred several hashtags: #FinTok, #PersonalFinance and #StockTok. These hashtags and the videos they’re connected to represent billions of views. And that presents a major opportunity for all companies operating in the finance marketplace. #FinTok could galvanize young people to become familiar with financial services in a brand-new way.

No one realized just how hungry Gen Z would be for financial information. Yet, statistics show that this generation is eager to avoid money troubles. According to a Transamerica retirement survey, 70% of Gen Zers are saving for retirement, and they start saving at age 19 on average. By comparison, most Baby Boomers didn’t actively consider their retirement until age 35.

So, it only makes sense that TikTok would become a financial literacy beacon. Roughly 40% of TikTok’s 755-million-strong user base is between 18 and 24. Most of those individuals grew up with a high degree of digital comfort. Accordingly, they’re satisfied learning about banking products or real estate investing from snackable videos made by “finfluencers.” This is great for the future — the earlier people take control of their finances, the better.

However, it puts the onus on finance companies to engage with this massive user base on the channel they prefer. That can seem like a tall order to many businesses outside of those that are fintech by design, such as neobanks.

Consider adopting the following strategies to make the most of #FinTok:

Set up a TikTok account: Until you’ve been on TikTok for a while, it’s impossible to understand. TikTok isn’t like other social sites; it has a particular content cadence. It also has a much different algorithm than you might suspect,  and that algorithm usually works in content creators’ favor.

Every user gets a “For You Page” (known as FYP). The page has a customized, always-populating, randomized feed. In other words, users who have never attempted to watch #FinTok videos could be introduced to one at any time. As a result, you don’t have to wait for a user to find you; TikTok can help your content to find them.

Follow #FinTok and related hashtags and accounts: Set aside time to dive into financial videos and see what’s out there, making use of all financial-related hashtags. You’ll also want to check out any #LearnOnTikTok videos, which are gaining momentum as a way to merge social media and educational topics.

#FinTok content isn’t like the financial content you see on YouTube, Facebook or Instagram. It’s engineered to be bite-sized and often humorous. Take notes to inform the future content you intend to create.

Engage with #FinTok influencers: Finfluencers concentrate their subject matter on money-based services and products. Some have macro followings, which can be huge but sometimes less engaged. Others have micro followings that are more modest but highly loyal. Neither type is better or worse – your job is simply to find a good match for your brand.

When looking for a match, remember that the influencer community can be picky. About 80% of influencers refuse to plug brands they don’t believe in. During your outreach, expect to pitch why you’d be a good fit. Once you find a few finfluencers, let them take charge of the content creation as much as possible. They’re the experts, after all.

Post your own financial content: Whether or not you partner with finfluencers, consider publishing unique TikTok content. As long as you have the bandwidth, map out a calendar of scheduled content that enables you to highlight and share your expertise.

Think about ways to comment on recent financial trends. Never assume that users have heard the basics of what you know. Many are just starting their financial literacy journey. They’re looking for guides like you to increase their money management know-how.

Until now, your social media marketing might have been limited to a fairly staid Facebook business page. But if you want to boost your brand recognition and conversions with 20 and 30-somethings, your best bet may be to get into the #FinTok scene to capitalize on one of the most exciting trends to come to finance in years.

Jeff Snyder is the founder and chief inspiration officer at Inspira Marketing Group.