In Minnesota, Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union has expanded its “Ditch Your Bank” awareness campaign to include advertisements that question the new fees.
Launched on Friday, Oct. 7, the ads, which take a swipe at the “cloak and dagger fee structure” also highlight the credit union difference of transparency and helping members hold onto as much of their money as possible. The multimedia blitz includes digital billboards, radio spots and newspaper ads.
“Minnesotans shouldn’t feel like they’re held hostage by financial institutions that continue adding new fees, charges and rate increases,” said Kyle Markland, president/CEO of the $1.4 billion Affinity Plus.
“The advertising response is our way of telling consumers that we sympathize with them, and that they have an alternative when it comes to where they do their banking,” Markland said.
San Diego County Credit Union has also drawn attention to its longstanding policy of offering free debit cards.
According to Teresa Halleck, president/CEO of the $5.2 billion San Diego-based credit union, while “many big banks will continue to seek out new ways to increase current fees or invent new fees, leaving many customers feeling nickel-and-dimed,” SDCCU will continue to offer many free services and fees to a minimum “because our members are our owners and we have their best interests at heart.”
Bank Transfer Day, the brainchild of a Los Angeles art dealer, has delivered what credit unions have long sought, said Brent Dixon, youth adviser for Filene Research Institute and Crash Network founder.
“Credit unions have forever been trying to come up with a national brand awareness campaign, but now you have Bank Transfer Day, which is fully from the people not trade associations or even the credit union industry,” Dixon said.
“It’s driven by real emotions, frustrations and needs,” he said. “It’s a huge opportunity for credit unions and I hope beyond the marketing they really make it easy for consumers to act and move their money over.”