PHOENIX, Ariz. – Co-op advertising with an emphasis on specific products and services-and away from industry awareness-will get a new push in 2002 from Arizona credit unions, the Arizona Credit Union League has announced. A statewide co-op campaign to debut in January and using all media “is designed to build traffic” in IRAs, mortgages, auto loans and checking, explained Pat Bodnar, vice president of public affairs for the League. The League is asking participating CUs to donate $1 a member to the campaign. It’s hoping to raise $1.3 million for the yearlong media buys. There are 65 credit unions in Arizona affiliated with the League, In total, they have 1.3 million members. Co-op advertising in Arizona was begun through the League last January in a six-month campaign pegged at $500,000. That campaign promoted CU awareness and was deemed successful by participants, said Bodnar, but CU execs felt next year’s ad blitz should “be more aggressive” on products. The 2002 effort, said Bodnar, will focus on products for each quarter-savings and IRAs in the first quarter, home mortgages and equity in the second, auto loans in the third and checking and credit cards in the fourth. Bodnar said the new campaign ads are still in the production phase and will still include the tagline “America’s Credit Unions: Where People are Worth More than Money.” The 2002 campaign is subject to changes to be made by a new marketing task force made up of marketing directors and top CU execs. The task force will oversee the ad promotions. Handling the logistics of the campaign is the Belo Corp., a Phoenix media firm that owns TV stations, newspapers and Internet sites in the state as well as in Texas. Belo sales reps will be helping place the ads for the League in major statewide markets, said Bodnar. The 2001 campaign, said Bodnar, which stressed CU awareness and utilized CUNA’s “comfort zone” ads was helpful in drawing new members. CUs were asked to contribute 50 cents per member for those ads appearing in TV, radio newspapers and direct mail. “We managed 75% participation from Arizona credit unions this year, and we expect to beat that number this year because we think credit unions know that this kind of money is well spent,” said Bodnar. One of the highlights of the campaign next spring will be the annual Women’s Expo, an educational and entertainment event in Phoenix, which draws 60,000-70,000 participants. The Expo, to be held April 6-7, will feature lectures on the usage of credit unions by Suze Orman, a financial author and guru who has frequently appeared on the TV talk shows including Oprah Winfrey. [email protected]

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