Maine credit unions are finding "Surf Dude," a cartoon character used to promote surcharge-free ATMs a valued friend this summer in raising CU awareness.
The camera-faced figurine appearing online and in CU ad signage is helping boost CU membership across the state as the Maine Credit Union League overall awareness campaign winds up pre-Labor Day promotions at festivals and fairs.
"We're grown 1% with a net increase of nearly 4,000 members since the start of the year," said a league spokesman. Overall membership, he said, is now at 611,000 which might dwarf statistics in other states "but remember we're still pretty small in population with just 1.3 million people."
As part of the advocacy/awareness effort, "Surf Dude" is due for an appearance starting this weekend at the American Folk Festival in Bangor. Earlier this month, the Maine CU brand appeared "exclusively and prominently" on all four sides of the information booth at the Lobster Festival in Rockland, said the league.
The summer campaign integrates Surf Dude into "fun aspects to draw members' attention to the fact that it is one of the largest, no-fee ATM networks in Maine," said the league.
"SURF is a valuable benefit to credit union members that continues to build in usage and popularity," said John Murphy, president/CEO. "With so much focus on fees that other financial institutions charge, SURF is yet one more way credit unions can reinforce the fact that we operate and focus on members, not profits."