NEW YORK (6/15/10)--Credit unions--traditionally conservative marketers--are taking a bolder, cheekier approach to promoting themselves as consumer dissatisfaction with banks continues, The New York Times.com
said Friday. Such efforts were featured in the article, “Some Credit Unions Try Something New, Promoting Themselves,” by Andrew Martin and Ron Lieber. Credit union leaders often discuss among themselves why the industry does not have a national advertising campaign such as the dairy industry’s “Got Milk?” to promote credit unions’ advantages over banks, Bill Hampel, chief economist for the Credit Union National Association, told the Times
. An issue with a national credit union campaign is how to divide the costs, he added. A more rudimentary problem is how to let most Americans know they are eligible to join a credit union, the Times
said. Another issue is the time and effort it takes to switch to a credit union--or any other financial institution. That involves shutting down automated bill payments at a consumer’s existing financial institution, setting up new ones elsewhere and having enough money in both accounts to avoid overdrafts during the transition period, the Times
said. It cited these examples of aggressive credit union marketing:
* Boeing Employees CU (BEU) in Tukwila, Wash., takes a swipe at banks by running an ad urging people to “Switch Now or Pay Later.” * SCE FCU in Irwindale, Calif., runs a campaign with the tag line, “I wish banking were less bankish.” * Public Service CU in Romulus, Mich.--in response to bank bailouts, rising bank fees and executive bonuses--creates a video in which Amy McGraw, Public Service marketing director, asks a colleague to portray a fat cat banker in a bathtub, bathing himself in dollar bills. The tagline is: “What are all the big banks really doing with your money?”
Also mentioned were: the Pennsylvania Credit Union Association; VyStar CU, Jacksonville, Fla.; and Dade County FCU, Doral, Fla. To read the Times
article and a related article featuring videos of some credit union ads, use the links.