Many people describe our generation as more dynamic economically and culturally-diverse than other age groups. However, they say we still need to learn the ropes of becoming more financially secure. Besides, older generations criticize us more often than not for being inefficient money managers and wanting in financial savvy.

Just like all millennials, I look forward to retirement in the future. Some of my peers consider pension plans as the most rewarding option. Young people with entrepreneurial opportunities or accumulated assets don't rely much on pension plans. Nearly everyone prefers to supplement existing resources with some retirement plan. Unlike other age groups, many neophyte investors and entrepreneurs like us don't trust 401-Ks and mutual funds. Instead, we will gladly own digital assets without tangible properties as protection against another stock market collapse.

Pension Plans VS Cryptocurrencies

I tried to find out the advantages of pension schemes. For one, these plans offer protection with lump-sum payments or staggered payouts to dependents in case the member passes away. Likewise, pensions fill in any loss or reduction of income upon giving up work. State governments provide tax relief on contributions allocated for pension plans. The argument pension plans as the perfect option until I happened to read a Cryptocurrency news item from.

Cryptocurrencies – Perfect for the Millennial Generation

The article, "Bitcoin, New Key to Millennials' Retirement Savings" mentioned how young couples prefer Bitcoin as well as other digital currencies as the medium for stashing their retirement savings. I think millennials will save for retirement with the cryptocurrency because of our association with the digital world. Whether investing in any virtual currency translates to a correct or ill-advised decision, many younger people look at cashless currencies as lifetime savings and investments.

A big part of the millennial era became disillusioned with traditional financial institutions. Financial analysts say if the trend persists, banks will experience a massive turmoil shortly. Young professionals comprising the supportive cryptocurrency community choose BTC, ETC, and Altcoins over banks. If you look at the list of cryptocurrencies by market cap, you’ll see the market is booming. These "irresponsible" individuals have witnessed the innovative powers of these cryptocurrencies which influenced most of us to favor these coins over traditional money.

Majority of digital currency enthusiasts like me come from the young millennial peer group disenchanted with the legacy of these social and monetary entities. Customary student loan programs have left many university graduates mired in debt with the volatile economy keeping them unemployed. Coupled with massive spending brought about by the growth of consumerism or purchasing commodities and services in escalating amounts will ultimately lead to adversity.

Now, it makes sense to say that millennials have shunned saving money for their retirement indicating a loss of confidence in repressive economic platforms. The ever-increasing inflation in the country seems to aggravate this condition which turned fiat currency practically useless. Virtual currencies mainly Bitcoin benefited from this recent development because of its decentralized nature.

Turning Away from Traditional Options

A recent survey with 2, 000 respondents published by Fortune.com disclosed that more and more millennials are turning their backs on long-established investment tools. They now lean towards the novel cryptocurrency. Individuals (18 to 34 years old) choose Bitcoin over stocks as maintained by venture capital company, Blockchain Capital. The survey also showed that 30% of these millennials claim they favor $1, 000 worth of BTC rather than &1, 000 in stocks or government bonds even as only two percent of American citizens own or used to have Bitcoin in their possession.

At times, the investment tends to become unstable, but Bitcoin enjoyed a very successful year breaking records and closing at an all-time peak of $7,372 this week. Bitcoin's value last year amounted to only $700. At the same time, the study also found out that young Americans know about this unique investment option. Around 42% of millennials recognize Bitcoin as against 15% of elderly adults.

Stocks already reached all-time highs but cryptocurrencies surged even higher and faster in 2017. I know that many Americans such as baby boomers and Generation X still prefer traditional investments but wait till we manage to prove that digital money could be a better alternative than the rest. Then, many people will definitely move over to our camp.


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A startup business faces many challenges. Some of the most difficult of these challenges come from dealing with competitors. Many times these competitors include large, well-established, well-funded corporations. How does an underdog business become better, faster, and more flexible to stay competitive?

The challenge may seem daunting, but the fact is that startup businesses can take steps to compete with even the biggest businesses. Here are three practical solutions.

1. Know Your Customer Like the Back of Your Hand

No startup can afford to skip this step. It requires an intense focus and a lot of research into the practices that will most effectively make your brand stand out in its market. Understand who your customers are and what attracts them to your company, then mold your company to fit their exact needs. In this way, you’ll find the niche that you and only you can fulfill for your customers.

Let’s take Apple for example. Smartphones existed 15, even 20 years ago, but were mostly reserved for tech enthusiasts and geeks. Now, everybody owns one. Apple recognized that, unlike those geeks in the past, most of the people don’t really care about tinkering too much with their phones or using every cutting edge option currently available. That’s why we often see their phones adopting a technology that’s already been available elsewhere for a good period of time. Nonetheless, their customers value the simplicity, elegant design, reliability and ease of use that people came to assign to every iPhone. As a result, Apple successfully positioned itself as a leader in the smartphone niche thanks to excellent marketing. Learning (and then appealing to) the needs of its customers is often more important than having the fastest processor or the best camera.

2. Customize Your Customer Experience

It may not seem like it, but competing with the huge businesses like Amazon can actually provide a competitive advantage. Once you’ve identified your place in the niche market and understand what your customers want and need, you can offer them personalized service that your larger competitors lack. Because they deal in enormous volume, these huge competitors are often somewhat lacking in human-centered service.

By making the customer the focus of your business, you’ll have to keep a vigilant eye out for ways to keep the customer engaged. In doing so, you’ll convince your customer base to return to use your solutions again and again.

You’ll need this advantage in order to stand out from the crowd. Between American mega-companies like Wal-Mart and inexpensive imports from China, your business won’t be able to beat every competitor price-wise. Instead you’ll beat them by convincing your customer base that your service is not only reliable and unique but also convenient, simple, and delightful. In this way you’ll earn the customer’s loyalties.

To convince your customers to trust you, send them personalized greetings and other signs that you’re able to communicate on a one-to-one level. Clearly show your customers that your products differs from inexpensive, mass-produced goods they can purchase anywhere else. Promote your product’s originality by showing how much genuine care goes into your business and seeking customer feedback at every opportunity. Building a relationship with your client base helps you better understand your customers, which in turn helps your business grow.

Caring about your product and promoting its originality doesn’t go quite far enough, of course. Your product actually has to be better than goods imported from China or other cheap products. If you customize your products and make them to the individual customer’s preferences, you’ll make a unique product that meets the customer’s needs and genuinely delights him or her.

3. Innovate and Be Flexible

One of the benefits of small businesses is that they have more freedom to be flexible than their larger competitors. That increased flexibility gives you more freedom to take risks, try new solutions to problems, and change directions when a proposed solution isn’t working out.

Being smaller also makes your company more responsive than your large competitors. You can react quickly to make the most of a current trend or respond to a crisis or poorly performing product or service. In short, you can respond to any new opportunity that comes up. In this way, you’ll continue to grow your business and stay productive.

Just because your startup business is small does not mean that it can’t be successful against better-established competitors. It simply means that you’ll need laser focus, a well-planned and well-executed strategy, and commitment. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that it’s impossible for you to compete in the same market as the big dogs.

Remember, a small company must understand what makes it different from the bigger companies. Then it must communicate this to its client base in order to turn one-time customers into loyal repeat customers. To be successful as an entrepreneur, you must learn to compete.


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