Shying Away From Safer-Than-Banks, New Texas Dow Ads Spotlight Trust
LAKE JACKSON, Texas --Texas Dow Employees Credit Union is letting members know it's business as usual with the launch of its new advertising campaign.
TDECU caused a stir when federal and state regulators said its previous advertising campaign implied the credit union was safe and sound and banks were not (CU Times, Sept. 24, 2008).
The new campaign, slated to run through the end of 2008, is intended to underscore the credit union's position as a trusted financial adviser in the community. The aim is to encourage members and nonmembers alike to turn to TDECU, despite the changing marketplace, for the financial tools they need to meet their needs in life.
"We continue to do what we've always done--helping our members get what they need, especially when they need it most," read one ad.
This campaign marks TDECU's second attempt at getting a message out to members since the financial crisis began. The first effort, a safe and sound campaign, was pulled in September after the FDIC complained the spots insinuated that "deposits with banks are not safe and sound" and the Texas Credit Union Commissioner Harold Feeney ordered TDECU to stop the ads.
Although TCUD recognized the competitive pressures in the financial services industry and the efforts of credit unions to differentiate products and services, it cautioned against engaging in this type of advertising.
Consumers today are deeply concerned about the safety of their deposits at financial institutions, and TCUD encourages credit unions to do their part to minimize public alarm and halt the decrease in public confidence. Credit unions, it said, should not publish ads that attempt to capitalize on consumer fears.
Shifting gears and tapping into Main Street, the new TDECU campaign features a series of personal testimonials from TDECU members in radio, print and television ads. It was created to reassure the public, while informing them the credit union has money to lend and continues to offer car, home and student loans.
"As part of our messaging, we want members to know two things. First, we are well capitalized and have more than enough liquidity to serve members now and into the future. Secondly, TDECU members receive deposit insurance for up to $250,000 or more through NCUA," said TDECU President/CEO Ed Speed. "As member-owned institutions, we have long history of stability and a strong commitment to serving the community. We have consistently met the needs of our members for generations and will continue to do so in the years to come."