CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Card Services for Credit Unions and Visa USA recently teamed up to provide 300 member credit unions a fresh new look at youth marketing during a free Webcast, exclusively for CSCU members.
"As Boomers and Gen X continue to age, it's essential to tap into Gen Y and develop new, younger member relationships," said Robert Hackney, CSCU president.
During the Webcast, attendees heard about the distinct advantage credit unions have over traditional banks for connecting with the young adult mindset and lifestyle. Visa also showed attendees inexpensive and effective marketing programs for the young adult market, including how to attract them to card products and services, and grow with them through the marketing lifecycle and enriching their member relations.
In addition, two CSCU member credit unions, Suncoast Schools FCU and Ascend FCU also presented their youth marketing programs.
Suncoast Schools FCU Youth Marketing Manager Juli Lewis shared tips and tactics for student-run branches in local elementary, middle and high schools; as well as the credit union's Financial Football Super Bowl program that teaches financial literacy to the youth and awards scholarships to the winners.
Greg Davis, public relations coordinator for Ascend FCU, wrapped up the Webcast by sharing its Discover, Venture and Go: Youth Marketing Programs. Discover is a savings account for children age 12 and under. Venture is a savings account for members age 13 and 17 and also a checking account for member's age 15-17, who have a joint owner. Go is for young adults 18-24 and offers a unique check card, free Go checks and a customized checkbook cover. The three combined youth programs have nearly 2,000 accounts already and total balances (deposits & loans) of $3,139,397.
It is estimated that by 2009, Gen Y, which represents some 76 million young adults born between 1977 and 1994, will have a $500 billion buying power. The group is typically described as very financially aware, diverse, highly wired, empowered and having a sense of entitlement. According to CSCU, there are many distinct trends for the Gen Y market including: customization, cultural infusion, pocket empowerment, marketing as entertainment, and their loyalty equals six months, not three years.
CSCU adds that credit unions clearly have a distinct advantage in marketing towards the youth. Gen Y is very group oriented, and therefore can be enticed by credit unions' inclusive "membership." The co-operative structure of credit unions also allows young members to feel they're in control.