This is what consumers expect from financial offers
What is an expert Is it someone who understands the state of affairs sufficiently to remember facts about them, or is it someone who takes what others see and uses it to teach them what might be?
Experts everywhere are talking about the “banking revolution” in which fintechs such as BeforePay, Afterpay and YouPay are involved. There’s been a deluge of articles from economists, venture capitalists, financial journalists, and Tom next door who hit the digital press with just a handful of the same views.
Not unlike the “photographers” who created digital cameras on millions of people almost overnight, the fact that anyone can now publish an article on a subject for free has resulted in almost everyone doing so. But few of them seek their own truth.
Take, for example, buy-now-pay-later companies, whose value grew almost entirely due to the growing number of experts calling them “revolutionary”. Soon more piled up, until almost everyone said they were “the next big thing,” everyone was buying stocks and driving the price higher and higher. That doesn’t change the fundamentals of a company.
There are dozens of companies out there that help me spend my wages before I have it, when I might never have it, when I shouldn’t spend it, and when I couldn’t spend it before. The experts speak of them as if payday lenders, lay-buy, credit cards, and consumer finance were new topics – they aren’t. Afterpay’s own goal, described in their June 2015 pitch, was to charge consumers up to 20% interest and 𝙩𝙤 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙛𝙞𝙩𝙖𝙗𝙡𝙮 𝙖𝙣𝙙 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙜𝙧𝙚𝙨𝙨𝙞𝙫𝙚𝙡𝙮 𝙜𝙧𝙤𝙬 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙖𝙢𝙤𝙪𝙣𝙩 𝙤𝙛 𝙘𝙧𝙚𝙙𝙞𝙩 𝙚𝙭𝙩𝙚𝙣𝙙𝙚𝙙 𝙩𝙤 𝙘𝙤𝙣𝙨𝙪𝙢𝙚𝙧𝙨; and the experts are still talking about a revolution.
Why don’t the experts talk about companies that care about my pay?
Where are the thousands of experts who write about common people holding on to their salary, increasing their salary, or learning how to use their salary to help them and others in new and empowering ways? That would be a revolution.
What about the companies that teach me that every time I spend it too early, if I spend it too early, I’ll get less of it?
What about the companies that tell me the things I don’t want to hear in a way that is open to me so that tomorrow I can be the only expert I need to keep improving my wages?
Change is coming
There are a small but growing number of companies aiming to change this industry for the better. They come from dark corners of the world, led by people who don’t come from the financial world, but from everyday life, who are fed up with an industry and a world that relies on it, that celebrates the stupidest ideas.
These are people who speak of “companies that make sense”; Companies that make money by helping people, not praying for them. The media are not yet raising their voices, but their voices are resonating with the consumers – the customers – the ordinary people who will bear the cost of this industry and force it to change.
It’s a movement that is increasing in pace and size. Google searches for “Inclusive Capitalism” have increased by 3,900% in the last 5 years alone. Check out other terms describing why capitalism is broken and why wealth inequality is growing, and you will get a sense of the swelling sense of millions of people that has all the makings of a generational movement in its infancy.
These companies will introduce a new way to make money in finance that is so ethical that it is so focused on the common people that it is almost inevitable that their ideas will flourish. They are building companies that are not just products for consumers, but platforms for a movement that is growing in a generation that is fed up with a system that takes more from them than there is.
In short, the biggest transfer of wealth the world has ever seen is coming to a generation currently being so punished by the system that they will use their wealth to demand a new one.
Young people hate capitalism; it’s not their system. It is a system that belonged to the generations before them and that they paid a heavy price for.
In 2007 young people experienced a “one-time recession” while forming their worldview. Between 2011 and 2019, when these views solidified, their wages stayed the same, but their costs rose around them. As a result, they built 34% less wealth than the generation before them of the same age.
In 2020, they experienced another “one-time recession” and were imprisoned for a year, isolated from the experiences they learned to cherish in lieu of unreachable wealth.
At the start of the pandemic, there was 1 person worth $ 100 billion. Now there are 9.
Young people see it, they live it, they feel it every day, because they pay a higher tax rate on their small wages than billionaires on all their wealth.
Millennials currently hold 4.8% of wealth. There are now 40-year-old millennials. At the same age, the baby boomers held 21% of the wealth. Regardless of your opinion of the generation above or below you, this is undeniably important.
In 2018, 51% of 18 to 29-year-olds found socialism favorable, while only 30% found capitalism good (US YouGov survey 2018). Most revealing, however, is that the definition of socialism is changing in this age group. Only 22% believe that socialism involves state control; most just think that it means more equality.
What these 51% of people are actually saying is that they see ethics and fairness as much more important than profit. And all of this before we locked them in their rooms at high cost for a year to protect the generations from a virus. Now imagine the numbers …
A 2016 Gallup survey found that 90% of 18-29 year olds rate entrepreneurs positively. 98% of them rated small businesses positively because they were perceived as a lack of greed.
The support of a business model by 98% of a market is a metric that would blow any professional off the socks, and yet “Afterpay” is still their headline. They are too busy talking about the returns they can get by using that 98% to see the upside potential of a company that makes money by raising the same people to stand up for movement and own it, not just use it as a business to buy products they cannot afford.
A majority of young people support ethical and responsible business practices, an overwhelming majority support entrepreneurs, and almost all support companies with a perceived lack of greed.
Why don’t the experts say that entrepreneur-led companies build platforms with reasonable profit? Or platforms that offer ethical solutions to a generation with unparalleled social values? Where are the experts talking about the companies that are providing this generation with a way to build a system that will reduce wealth inequality rather than increase it?
Why aren’t the experts examining how the company that does this best could possibly be the next Google?
They don’t talk about afterpay anymore while the generation that will take over the controls supports systemic change to the point where you pay for a t-shirt for 8 weeks it’s like arguing about which coal the best is while we’re all driving past a wind farm.
The “real experts”
Right now there are a few people developing solutions in the shadows that will soon take this world by storm. VCs are not investing in them yet, newspapers are not reporting on them yet. They have nothing to do with crypto or blockchain, they are not against capitalism or against the government – these people don’t even have a single tin foil hat. They are the people who think that a small change in the way an industry makes money could change the whole world.
It’s people like you and me who are tired of living in a world that celebrates successes achieved through the exploitation of others. They are not idealists; They know what human nature is and they believe it can be used to educate people, not just to make money by keeping them small.
These people work on companies that not only improve products or services, but show the world how to build a financial system that benefits more than fewer people – companies that not only tell people how badly they are being treated, but offer products that clearly prove this.
Apple may make it clear to its customers they don’t need banks, but the next super company will show the world how powerful groups of people can be when the financial system they belong to is built for them, not built on them.
The experts are all out there looking for the next Google – want to invest in it, to say they see it coming. I often wonder how they’re going to find it when they can’t even talk about where to look.
This article was first published on LinkedIn.