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Reaching out

Empower’s latest social media push targets Gen Z

Empower is using Snapchat and Instagram as platforms to send the retirement message to young workers.

It's never too early for young adults to start saving for retirement, even if they're barely out of their baby-sitting years. Empower Retirement brings home that message in its latest social media campaign aimed at Generation Z, the demographic cohort following millennials.

In a series of animated videos on Snapchat and Instagram, Empower engages the nation's youngest workers with quirky vignettes about the importance of preparing for their financial well-being.

In one video, for instance, a couple puzzles over a garage sale purchase that turns out to be a first printing of the Declaration of Independence worth $2.4 million. "The rest of us need a retirement plan," the video reminds viewers in bold letters at the end.

"What we're looking to do is be able to connect with people right as they're entering the workforce," said Steve Jenks, Greenwood Village, Colo.-based senior vice president and chief marketing officer. "If we can catch somebody in the first year they're in the workforce and get them participating in the retirement plan, that will make a materially different outcome for them."

The campaign consists of a "rare artifacts" series, which focuses on retirement themes, and a "pro tips" series, which addresses more general financial wellness and savings topics.

It was designed to "connect with people in a way they like to interact," Mr. Jenks said, adding the campaign tries to offer educational messages in an entertaining way..

Empower is looking to replicate the success of an earlier Snapchat campaign — its first — that ran in the summer of 2018.

The current campaign, which will run through the end of February, is part of Empower's social media effort to continue an ongoing conversation with millennial savers and start one with Gen Z about the importance of saving early.

"When you look at saving for a successful retirement, one of the most important drivers of achieving your income in retirement is how early you start," Mr. Jenks said.