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Category brand building + Individual credit union marketing = Long term growth
Our category-level branding campaign supports long-term growth of our industry. The platform leads with the Open Your Eyes to a Credit Union - designed to get Americans to look to credit unions and correct their misperceptions about their ability to join and accessing their money.
The effectiveness of this initiative is being measured by the following key metrics in our target audience:
Looking for ideas on how your credit union can engage with and leverage the Credit Union Awareness campaign? Get inspiration from contributors.
Contributor Chats are short one-on-one discussions where a contributor shares their best practices on how they connect the campaign to their credit union's marketing and goals.
Contributor Spotlights dive deeper into contributors' strategies for leveraging and engaging with the Credit Union Awareness campaign.
Launched in January 2019, consumers are led to YourMoneyFurther.com to learn how credit unions can be their best financial partner. Take a look at these resources:
Frequently Asked Questions
Where can I find information detailing the high-level vision and strategy for this campaign?
Information about the campaign, including a comprehensive overview, campaign update and list of contributors, is at cuna.org/awareness.
We have run membership campaigns before. What's different with this one?
This initiative is a credit union industry-level effort to drive consumer consideration of credit unions. It is raising consumer interest and creating new opportunities for local marketing efforts to succeed. It is designed to unify our industry's voice to better capture the attention of non-member consumers.
What research has been conducted to inform this campaign?
We used extensive consumer research to determine our opportunities and challenges as a movement. We started with a foundational baseline survey of 1,500 non-members and a consumer segmentation survey with 2,400 non-members. We also conducted nationwide focus groups with non-members and members that yielded insights into public opinion on credit unions. In addition, we have done regional research to better understand local perspectives and differences in attitudes across the country. To measure our progress, we conduct annual consumer surveys on consideration and quarterly brand health checks about credit union attributes.
Our research informs our objectives. First, increase consideration of credit unions. We learned from research that 98% of Americans are aware of credit unions, but far too many can't recall a credit union as an option available to them. Second, dispel dominant consumer misperceptions. Research shows that consumers believe they "can't join" or that “accessing my money will be difficult”. For example, consumers do not think credit unions have a nationwide network of ATMs or the latest app/mobile options on par with national banks.
Our research shows consumers respond positively to messages showing how credit union membership can help them reach their financial goals. That they have a partner engaged in their success.
How will all credit unions benefit from this initiative?
A rising tide lifts all boats. We aim to drive consumers to credit unions. We need all credit unions engaged in this important work.
How will the campaign help credit unions attract/retain younger members that our survival depends upon?
The digital-first media deployment targets specific demographics, including millennials, as they look for financial services. Our campaign also targets parents ages 35-55, an audience that is making big financial decisions for their families.
What media will be used?
The campaign is digital first. It deploys paid social media and other online outlets on channels where our core audience spends time.
How do we deliver on 5,500 credit unions being easy to join?
The digital advertising moves consumers to greater consideration of our industry. All credit unions benefit from that increased understanding that opens doors for credit unions to build business and grow membership.
Some consumer ads indicate that “you're not an account number” but the first question many credit unions ask is “what's your account number?”
There is good guidance on this and other matters in the Messaging Guide.
How will we know the campaign is working?
The Open Your Eyes to a Credit Union campaign is a category-level initiative designed to tackle consumer myths about credit unions and raise consideration of our industry. We will measure our progress through consumer engagement with the campaign and survey research.
Credit unions are encouraged and expected to continue their direct response marketing to drive product sales and membership. The creative and media plan of Credit Union Awareness is a category-level, industry-wide effort to raise consideration. Our goal is to get more consumers to consider joining a credit union. It is up to credit unions to link to that and turn them into members. This is a long-term effort that needs long-term commitment and focus.
Becoming A Contributor
How do I contribute?
Organizations interested in contributing should complete the form at cuna.org/awareness. After submitting the form, staff will follow up and get details to draw up a contribution agreement. Each contributor is encouraged to make a three-year commitment. After the agreement is signed, organizations will be granted access and an invoice will be sent.
I want to be a 2021 contributor. When will I be recognized as a contributor?
Credit unions are welcome to make their 2021 pledge/contribution today! If you commit to your 2021 contribution in 2020, you will be listed as a contributor on YourMoneyFurther.com immediately and receive access to the creative assets as soon as your agreement is processed.
As a Credit Union Awareness contributor, does my credit union show up differently on the credit union locator?
Yes! As a contributor, your credit union is ranked at the top of a relevant zip code search results in the credit union finder on YourMoneyFurther.com. Additionally, your credit union is designated with a large blue star and the products/solutions offered are graphically highlighted (e.g. ATM, Small Business Lending, Mortgage Lending etc.) For interested credit unions, links to your membership and service pages can be customized with direct links.
If credit unions have submitted funds and the initiative is discontinued, how do the designated funds get disbursed?
We fully anticipate running the Credit Union Awareness as an ongoing activity. However, the multi-year pledge agreements offer protections to contributors if there is a discontinuation.
What if we fall short of our fundraising goal?
With our media partners, we'll have a workable budget in your region. Although fundraising goals have been established to provide a foundational budget, we'll carefully evaluate options depending on the actual funds raised.
How did the contribution ask across the nation and through our League get determined?
Through discussions with our media firm about viable advertising budgets we are able to determine the ask amount for each region and credit union.
When should I pledge and plan to submit payment?
We welcome your commitment at any time but are working from calendar year advertising planning so pledges that match that are preferred. Pledges are important to initiate and continue media planning in your region. We are closely coordinating with your league on these details.
Are credit unions expected to take from existing marketing budgets to fund this effort?
No! The campaign is intended to complement existing credit union marketing. Contributions should be in addition to existing marketing budgets. Credit unions still need to deploy their great marketing in their areas.
What is YourMoneyFurther.com?
YourMoneyFurther.com is a consumer-facing website that is part of the overall Open Your Eyes to a Credit Union campaign. All advertising will link to this website as a call to action.
YourMoneyFurther.com reinforces key campaign messages and includes a filter-enabled credit union finder. The data for the credit union finder is based on NCUA call reports and is updated quarterly. Service data is also pulled from Callahan & Associates.
The finder results will first display all contributing credit unions within 50 miles of the center of the zip code searched in order of distance. Consumers can also search based on their location for more precise results. Contributor listings include services the credit union provides. Non-contributors will be listed after contributors.
Awareness Contributor Headquarters
What is the Contributor Headquarters?
It is an online portal available to contributing credit unions to customize campaign assets for local use, following our guidelines. The site also includes links to the Messaging Guide, an archive of the contributor newsletter, ways to stay engaged with the campaign, and other useful contributor resources. Credit union staff can use their CUNA.coop logon ID to access. If staff does not have an ID, follow the directions on the CUNA.coop logon page for help.
Can we co-brand the collateral?
The Open Your Eyes to a Credit Union assets can be customized for local use. A number of creative assets are available to contributing credit unions to customize with their logo and website. Be sure to consult the usage guidelines found on ContributorHQ.
Will additional content be developed?
Yes, the campaign was designed to be nimble. As messaging evolves, more content will be added for local use to continue to complement the creative being used at the broader, category level. An example of this is our COVID-19 creative assets developed to help our credit union partners during the pandemic environment.
How soon will I see the campaign in my area?
After pledges have been secured in a regional area, timelines to deploy the campaign will be developed and communicated. During that time, the media buy will be finalized.
Are funds used over a 12-month period from the campaign start date?
The media plans are intended for a calendar year cycle. The plans will be heavier during some months of the year and lighter during others to account for the seasonality of consumer interest in financial services.
Where will the money be spent?
Funds raised will be spent in the state/region where the funds have been contributed. The guidance is to focus on targeted consumers no matter where they are in the region to maintain the efficiency of the media plan.
How much of the funds raised are needed for the campaign administration? We are working to spread administration costs (research, creative, back-office support, national staff) as widely as possible and building industry partner support to minimize individual asks for administration. CU Awareness LLC is an affiliate of CUNA with its own board of directors.
If we can buy media less expensively, why can't we do it ourselves?
The coordinated approach to media buying is meant build scale and ensure a common set of metrics by which we can measure progress and take advantage of our combined media buying power.
Are safeguards in place to ensure the vast majority of the digital media budget is not focused on major metropolitan areas where there is a larger pool of consumers meeting the “interest” targeting of financial services?
Open Your Eyes to a Credit Union is focused on consumers between the ages of 25-54 that have indicated an interest in financial services. Wherever they are, the campaign will follow.Are there resources available for internal marketing to credit union employees to increase their “buy-in” and participate as advocates and promoters for the campaign?
There is a Facebook group called “Your Money Further Credit Union Community” which provides resources to employees at contributing credit unions to help increase internal “buy-in” from staff. Credit union social media administrators can join either with their profile or their credit union business page. Monthly campaign updates are also published. If you'd like to add names to that distribution, please email email@example.com.
Can tracking be set up to monitor increased website referral traffic from YourMoneyFurther.com to contributing credit union's websites?
Yes, but do keep in mind the category-level purpose of the creative material and paid media is to shift consumer perceptions. Credit unions should not expect a large amount of traffic to their sites. That is different from direct response advertising.
Since this is a digital-first campaign, are there best practices available for the type of experience, interaction or digital path consumers should have once they hit the credit union's website? Should specific landing pages be developed by credit unions to field traffic from this campaign?
A benefit of participating is access to exclusive content from our media again on social and digital best practices. Those are available on the YourMoneyFuther Facebook community.
Don't hesitate to connect with firstname.lastname@example.org if you don't see the information you're looking for.
Join the 1,111 organizations that have pledged more than $52.3 million to the Open Your Eyes to a Credit Union® campaign. The campaign has launched in 25 states and since January 2019 has:
Thank you to all our contributors, including our Founding Visionaries, for helping us make this initiative a reality!
Get in touch for more information!
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