Credit Unions & the Congressional Bailout: What Does It Mean for Marketing?

In an October 7th webinar roundtable hosted by Chip Filson, CEO of Callahan & Associates, credit unions shared their vision of the new financial landscape that is being shaped daily by tumultuous markets. The tone of the call wasn't one of concern; the call rang of opportunity. Credit Unions nationwide shared stories of positive times as well as small struggles, and most importantly: How they were going to continue to capitalize on bank's failures. So what exactly did the credit unions preach?

First is effective, candid messaging. The credit union community is letting everyone know that they are fully insured to $250,000 per account, and that it's business as usual due to their safety and soundness. Credit Unions have avoided many of the risky lending scenarios of recent years that occurred in banks, and in return, their balance sheets are as strong as ever.

Second is the method of communication. Credit Union CEOs shared how they are running ads in local papers. They are sending e-alerts to their members, and most importantly, they are sending targeted emails to get their message out. Will a ten-paragraph letter from the CEO affect the members positively? Will they read the whole message? Probably not, but every member's situation is different, and there are likely enough of them who want to hear the full message.

Some members understand the government bailout. Others don't fully understand how the bigger picture will eventually trickle down to them. A typical 'batch and blast' email is not going to be effective enough to reach the whole membership with the message that is most appropriate to them. In a time of uncertainty, a misleading message could leave the credit union in dire straits.

The latest technology allows credit unions to personalize emails, target, and segment groups of members based upon their actions. Think about the message you would like to convey to a member who withdraws $75,000 in a week? With a few clicks of a button, you could re-assure them about the credit union's health and future prosperity, and stabilize that relationship, if that is at risk.

Please join CUtv on October 15th at 2pm EST, for a complimentary webinar on Best Practices in Dialogue Based Email.



Sept. 29, 2008



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