State Leagues Rev Up Co-Op Campaigns
Thanks to last year’s Bank Transfer Day, co-op ad campaigns, conducted by state leagues, are getting a major boost this spring with spruced-up ventures underway across the South and the Midwest.
For starters, the Mississippi Credit Union Association just this month debuted its first major statewide blitz by licensing one advanced by the League of Southeastern Credit Unions under the tagline “Credit Unions: We’re Giving Banking a Better Name.”
That awareness campaign, including 15- and 30-second radio spots that first aired in Florida and Alabama, is expected to work well considering the concurrent spillover effect from similar runs occur in those two states, said Charles Elliott, president/CEO of MCUA.
The three-month campaign will be running in eight different Mississippi markets. It was endorsed by MCUA following a recommendation by a marketing force of MCUA, after the trade group looked at a number of programs offered by peer leagues.
“This is something pretty fresh, and besides it provides a unified voice since credit unions in Alabama and Florida are using the campaign; meaning a unified message will benefit all as it bleeds across state lines including east and coastal Mississippi,” said Elliott.
MCUA also expects to rely on social media sites, newsletters and direct mail to deliver the brand, he said.
Meanwhile, the Indiana and Kentucky Credit Union Leagues are collaborating in 2012 on the start-up of the iBelong ad campaign as licensed by the Pennsylvania Credit Union Association. There are 54 CUs in Indiana and eight in the Louisville market taking part in the venture which began at the end of 2011. That campaign includes TV, radio and billboard placements with voluntary contributions from participating CUs.
The Indiana League, through its service subsidiary, is contributing $106,000 for the media buys. The awareness message has included more than 3,600 TV spots; 2,200 radio spots and 68 billboards, said the Indiana league.
In Pennsylvania, PCUA said it continues to get favorable public response to the iBelong campaign now running in seven media markets on a $900,000 budget with CU contributions solicited on a voluntary basis. PCUA ran into a series of disaffiliations two years ago when it insisted on mandatory assessments, which followed the same experience as California, which also dropped the required dues rule.
PCUA officials said because of the high cost of advertising in the Philadelphia market, there is an iBelong void but it is being compensated by results in other areas.
“Credit unions felt the ads would be too costly so we are simply not in Philadelphia,” said Michael A. Wishnow, PCUA senior vice president.
Since the launch of iBelong in July 2007, Pennsylvania CUs have witnessed a gain of 203,000 members and with the campaign contributing to the surge which came during last year’s Bank Transfer Day promotions.
“That was the perfect storm,” Wishnow said.