The Marketing Challenges of 2010 May Help Foster Innovative Solutions in 2011
When it comes to the trends in marketing, the challenge this year has been doing more with less.
Rather than feeling paralyzed by tighter budgets that resulted in a renewed focus on ROI accountability for every campaign or promotional dollar spent, longtime industry marketing and branding consultant Paul Lucas said to view it as a chance to get back to basics.
"What we're seeing is that those who rely on doing the same thing they've always done for the last five years are failing miserably," said Davis. "I think it's important for credit unions to differentiate themselves by talking about what they do well rather than pointing out what others do badly."
He added that the Move Your Money campaign urging consumers to leave their big banks and head to a local community bank or credit union is a great one, but credit unions have to be careful their marketing is more than just not being a big bank.
"An effective Twitter-Facebook presence is a big time investment in content and content is king," said Lay. "It has to be fresh, relevant and it has to look good especially if it's a video. It can't be a 10-minute diatribe with no story or purpose. Believe me, anything over two minutes is not worth being produced for the Web."
Davis, who declined to talk about social media beyond that some do it well and some don't, added, "If you want to compete, members need to be able to make decisions from anywhere they want and even apply for new accounts anywhere they are. I think we've lost sight of that, and many are scared to invest now but now is the time to do it. If a member who is sold on credit unions can't open an account from where they are, we've lost them."
While on the topic of connecting with Gen Y, Lay said it starts with recognizing, fostering and developing the young talent within the credit union walls on staff.
"That's why Brent Dixon's Crash events are such a huge deal," said Lay. "It's been amazing to see future leaders be a part of conferences they might not ordinarily be able to attend and discuss not just their challenges but come up with ways to overcome them. I can't stress how important it is to attract, recruit and retain young professionals internally if you're looking to connect with Gen Y members. Credit unions are going to have to ask what is their culture and what is it about that culture that will appeal to 22- or 28-year-olds?"