A YouTube video that is a part of a social media campaign coordinated and launched in April by the Virginia Credit Union League to increase awareness of the benefits of credit unions has now been viewed more than 1.1 million times, the league said.
The humorous video, “The Harder Side of George,” also attracted nearly 60 comments and 83 subscribers. More than 200 viewers gave the video thumbs up, while 60 posted thumbs down.
“This cracked me up,” wrote YouTube viewer sparkbish. “First ad I watched all the way through since the Google ad with Martin Van Buren.”
“It’s nice to see the lighter side of credit unions,” wrote YouTube Viewer Wesley Smith. “Bravo!”
But it didn’t tickle the funny bone of a few others.
“This video makes absolutely makes no sense,” wrote YouTube viewer Michael Johnson. “I love credit unions, but come on guys…seriously?”
The social media campaign targeted 18 to 35 year olds and encouraged them to visit the informational website www.QuitTheHit.com.
The campaign successfully reached the targeted demographic with more than 66,000 consumers visiting the informational website, via the video, and over 25,000 utilizing the “search for a credit union” feature, according to the VACUL.
“This was an unconventional and bold strategy for credit unions in Virginia and we set the bar high expecting to reach at least 1 million consumers. We relied on consumer research and designed an edgy, humorous campaign leveraging the power of social media to help reach that goal,” said VACUL President Rick Pillow. “Thanks to our credit unions' commitment to promoting this campaign, we surpassed our goal and reached more than 1.1 million consumers.”
Although awareness of credit unions in Virginia was already high at 78 percent, the VACUL said this campaign successfully reduced the “fog” of uncertainty surrounding credit union membership, with fewer consumers now saying credit unions are not a viable financial services option.
Post-campaign independent research and tracking revealed that double the percentage of consumers (from 4% to 8%) now have lower rates and fees as “top of mind” when they think of credit unions. Following the campaign, more consumers (from 56% to 61%) said they want to find out additional information about credit unions and their benefits
Virginia-based credit unions boast a total membership of more than 7.9 million, as of March 31, 2013. However, only an estimated 3.25 million of that number reside in Virginia, owed to the number of Virginia-based credit unions, especially those primarily affiliated with the government and military, serving members nationwide, and in some cases, all over the globe, including Navy Federal and PenFed, the nation’s largest and third-largest credit unions, respectively, with more than 5.5 million members between them.
The social media campaign was supported by financial contributions from 50 Virginia-based credit unions, the league and other sponsors.