Adding LIFE To Your Credit Union

By Bryan Clagett, Chief Marketing Officer, Geezeo

Your members’ expectations evolve as they become more acclimated to technology, more financially stressed, and overburdened with life’s pace and demands. In case you have not noticed, the world is changing. Newly emerging competition is developing new bank-like products, and the definition of banking is evolving right before our eyes.

It’s time we step back and reevaluate how credit unions can provide more value.

Declaring you’re the financial partner for life is just not compelling, unless you have strong actions to back it up. Too often we forget that credit unions are enablers, and in fact have the ability to enable members to get the things they want and do the things they want to do.

With all the advances in technology, some things have not changed—like the basic needs of a household to address fundamental financial requirements, milestones, challenges and obligations. Life and money are inextricably linked whether we like it or not (or are willing to admit).

Importance of an Emotional Connection

The key for the credit union is to remain remarkably relevant throughout the “member” journey and to be there with logical products and services when members (or their households) could use them the most. Credit unions are missing very logical point-of-purchase opportunities, while not associating their products with the specific needs of a member at a specific, relevant time.

Don’t lose sight of the fact that people have an emotional connection to money and, perhaps more importantly, things and events. Emotion is a primary differentiator between transactions and a true relational connection, which (in my opinion) is the foundation of an engagement banking strategy.

How can you help a family prepare for a child’s education? How can you help a young couple get their first home? Can we help a couple plan a wedding? What’s the best way for me to get a car for my son? How do we help a family with a medical emergency? Can a bank resolve a small business’s cash crunch? In all of these examples, there are financial considerations and ramifications—and all present opportunities to credit unions.

Engagement Opportunities for Credit Unions

We need to put some LIFE into banking. LIFE is my acronym for “life infused financial experiences.” Milestones, like the examples above, represent obvious opportunities for credit unions to engage members and offer very relevant solutions while building deeper relationships and new levels of trust.

Life_weddingapp_geezeoWe have the data, the systems, the channels, and the people; we simply need to make sure we have the right solutions and services in place that will build systems and triggers that bring credit unions and their solutions to the forefront at the ideal time of need.

Now let’s try to put some ROI or business rationale around this. Bain and Company reports that members who are “emotionally connected” purchase 47% more than those who are simply “satisfied.” Members with a strong, committed relationship are 49% more likely to remain a member and twice as likely to recommend a retailer to friends and family. Bain also found companies that are loyalty leaders, grow revenue twice as fast as their competition and at a lower cost.

We should not fear disruption in the banking industry. However, we should recognize that life is disruptive, so we should find ways to reduce members’ financial pains. Credit unions have the chance to reduce friction while forming deeper emotional connections with members through recognizing and cultivating life infused financial experiences. This is a real opportunity for financial institutions and one that most industry disruptors don’t have the infrastructure or understanding to leverage.

Geezeo-A-Z-LogoGeezeo is the NAFCU Services Preferred Partner for Personal Financial Management (PFM). For more More educational resources and contact information are available at www.nafcu.org/geezeo

Like Me and Let the Conversation Continue

Originally posted on NCR’s blog.

Guest post written by Sundeep Kapur, Director Strategic Marketing-Ecommerce, NCR Corporation.

NCR Corporation is the NAFCU Services Preferred Partner for ATM Products and Services, Teller Cash Recyclers (TCRs).

You buy a cup of coffee and the cashier hands you a receipt with an incentive to join the company’s Facebook page. You’re not completely sure if you should. What the cashier forgot was that your order was messed up, you waited for more than 10 minutes, and the manager was not in the store. So what do you do?

You like the brand on Facebook only to tell all your friends about your bad experience. Isn’t it ironic that you have to like them to tell them that you really do not like them!

A complete stranger walks up to you in the parking lot and hands you a flyer. It is a coupon to your favorite store, plus a chance to win a digital reader. Would you give this stranger your phone number? Would you introduce the stranger to your family and friends? Would you invite the stranger into your home?

Yet the same thing happens online and you willingly become friends via an unknown brand ambassador – perhaps a sponsored story via a friend of a friend.

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Two Ways Analytics Help Maximize Digital Marketing Impact

Originally posted on SAS Institute Inc.’s Blog.

Guest post written by Wilson Raj, Global Customer Intelligence Director, SAS Institute Inc.

SAS Institute Inc. is the NAFCU Services Preferred Partner for Business Intelligence, Predictive Analytics Software & Risk Assessment.

In the last decade, CMOs have made great strides in elevating their stature. According to the latest SpencerStuart survey, CMO tenure has steadily climbed from 23 months in 2004 to 45 months in 2012. What are the reasons for this improved longevity? Marketers are becoming more strategic-minded, they’re taking a more expansive view of their customer, and they’re adding more sophistication and data-driven decisions in marketing campaigns and operations.

The swift adoption of mobile devices and the proliferation of digital channels have created opportunities for highly interactive, rich communications between consumers and brands. But those very same circumstances can be a double-edged sword as more consumers demonstrate little tolerance for irrelevant, ill-timed, and “creepy” communications.

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Individually Focused IRA Marketing

Originally posted on CUInsight.com

Guest post written by Dennis Zuehlke, Compliance Manager, Ascensus

The April 15 tax filing and IRA contribution deadline is only one month away. Much of the marketing focus this year is on the higher IRA contribution limits. For 2013, the IRA contribution limit is $5,500, up from the previous $5,000 limit.

This is good news for baby boomers socking away money for retirement, but for young millennials just starting out, making a $5,500 IRA contribution may be out of reach, and such a marketing campaign may appear out of touch. Targeting the right message to the right audience is key. Remember, the “I” in IRA stands for individual. IRA marketing efforts focused on the individual—based on their generational demographic—will benefit both your members and your credit union.

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Examine Your Mobile Strategy for 2013

Originally posted on CUInsight.com

Guest post written by David Hilger, SVP Information Technology, Allied Solutions

Articles about mobile banking are popping up everywhere – from the Wall Street Journal to American Banker, in local papers, and on technology and finance blogs. Think more broadly – don’t ask yourself whether or not you have mobile banking. Consider where you’d like your mobile strategy to take you.

What are your members asking for?

There are, perhaps, many things you are hoping to offer your members: mobile banking that allows them to check their balance or transfer funds; remote deposit capture; ATM or branch locations or mapping; straightforward “contact us” options or maybe a more robust self service capability. People appreciate these tools, and are increasingly likely to expect such offerings from their bank or credit union and often consider these when selecting their financial institution.

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