Created by North Central Area Credit Union Vice President of Finance/Accounting Tom Dluzen, the blog is designed to help busy board members better understand a variety of issues impacting the credit union industry.
"Board members are generally pretty busy with their own professions and lives so sometimes there just isn't always a lot of time left over to follow what's going on in the credit union industry," Dluzen said. "The general tendency is to focus on things you know and can relate to, like talking about NSF items or marketing at board meetings, and the challenge is to broaden the discussions beyond what's familiar."
As a recently elected board member on a medical center board, he said he can now empathize with board directors.
"I've been serving on this medical center board for a few months now, and it is challenging at times to pick up on what they're talking about because it isn't my industry," Dluzen said. "It got me thinking about credit union board members and how great it would be to have a blog that could be kept short and simple, have some talking points on important industry information, and it could be used almost as a quick reference."
Dluzen, who has always had an interest in writing, decided to start the blog on his own, not affiliated with his credit union, and focused on simplifying the complex and making the information easy to understand. He said the blog format works perfectly because ideally he wanted a forum that would create an ongoing dialogue.
"I wanted to give people an opportunity to chime in, ask questions and get more involved," Dluzen said. "I'm hoping to even get others writing articles and building this interactive community for board members."
He added that the blog may evolve over time, but there is no plan to stray from the briefness of the material. Topics covered range from the new credit card legislation and red flag rules to new RESPA rules and the latest in corporate stabilization efforts.
"It was a little scary at first because I wasn't sure if there'd be enough to write about or if anyone would read it," Dluzen said. "But there's been no lack of material from things that come up throughout the course of my day to timely issues that are happening in the news. And the blog is actually starting to get some 50 to 100 hits a day."
Dluzen posts on average three to five times a week to keep the information fresh and hopes that the topics will help spark more board conversations.
Young & Free Campaigns Collaborate for TV
The Young & Free campaign just got a little more connected with the launch of the Young & Free Show.
Currency Marketing Program Manager and Living Young & Free Community Manager Cheryl Weins will host a bimonthly coordinated show. Each episode will feature three two-minute educational segments from Young & Free spokesters Myles Peterman (Alberta), Josh Sutherland (South Carolina) and DeAndre Upshaw (Texas). New episodes will be produced every two weeks and posted on each of the Young & Free sites, as well as the Living Young & Free central site (livingyoungandfree.com). The show is designed to serve as additional content to the regular independent blogging and videos developed by each regional spokester.
According to Currency Marketing President/Creative Director Tim McAlpine, the move to grow a loyal audience through syndicated shows rather than posting random videos hoping for a viral sensation makes sense considering 24 hours of new video is posted on YouTube every 60 seconds.
McAlpine said the Living Young & Free Show will also be distributed on Blip.tv, iTunes as a video podcast, the Y&F YouTube channels, Y&F Facebook fan pages and "anywhere else we can post it. The more places we can get it seen the better."
Developed by British Columbia-based Currency Marketing, Young & Free is a financial management package designed to engage 19- to 25-year-olds to effectively manage their money. Regional Young & Free spokesters, selected by their peers, ensure their respective Y&F microsites are fresh, entertaining and educational via a mix of blogs, polls, YouTube videos and more.
Yolo Offers Small Biz Marketing Help
In a bid to establish itself as a community partner, Yolo Federal Credit Union is helping local business owners market themselves.
The credit union has teamed up with the Yuba Community College Small Business Development Center to offer a free workshop titled "Low Cost Marketing Ideas to Help Increase Your Sales."
The workshop is designed to help local businesses find the most efficient and cost-effective ways to stretch their marketing dollars.