CUs Go Viral to Tout Small Biz Success
If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video might be considered a novel.
That’s how Bill Beardsley, president/CEO of Michigan Business Connection, describes the potential impact for credit unions as they share stories on ways they helped to start and grow their members’ small businesses.
The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based commercial lending CUSO has launched a video drive, asking credit unions to post short videos showcasing the positive economic impact they have made on local businesses or community causes.
The Michigan Credit Union League & Affiliates is supporting the promotion through its CUBE TV division, which released a video with additional details and production tips for credit unions, according to MBC.
“We’re so busy everyday grinding out the successes. This is an opportunity for us to take a step back and capture the image of those successes; the impact is important and therapeutic,” Beardsley said.
Michigan’s credit unions have loaned more than $1 billion to local businesses and donated more than $10.5 million to community causes as of 2012, according to the MBC citing data from the Michigan Credit Union League Community Reinvestment Initiative Report.
Still, most businesses think of banks first when it comes to their financial needs, Beardsley said. He’s hoping the video stories will help push credit unions to the top of the consideration list.
Mona Shand, public relations manager for the Michigan league, said it’s time for credit unions to tout their service especially now as they face the potential threat of taxation.
“Credit unions are notoriously reluctant to blow their own horns and draw attention to the good works they are doing, so we try to do what we can to encourage them to show the credit union difference in action,” said Shand, who is featured in the promotional video.
The league was in a perfect position for the video project because it has both access to the Michigan credit union community through its publications and public affairs, as well as expertise in video production through its CUBE TV portal and product, Shand said.
Meanwhile, as credit unions work to create their visual story, MBC is also planning its second annual CU Lunch Local event for Oct. 15. Last year, more than 51 credit unions cash-mobbed local businesses.
To prepare for the cash mob, the $92 million NuPath Community Credit Union in Wyandotte, Mich., has approached a local restaurant near its branches to work with the owner to provide co-branded coupons for its employees. The restaurant will then bill the credit union office for the number of coupons redeemed.