Financial Education is one of those amazing things where the more you use it, the more you can find new uses for it. Providing financial education to your members is not only the right thing to do because it empowers them to make smarter decisions, but it also can help accelerate and grow a financial institution’s business at the same time. It can be used strategically in many ways across different parts of a credit union – Members, SEGs, and Community Outreach. But in the end, a credit union that provides a solid Financial Education program really helps to build trust and loyalty with the communities and people they care most about.
Content marketing, which is the practice of attracting consumers by providing valuable information, has become a central tenet of many corporate marketing strategies. And Financial Education is increasingly being used for content marketing. But for credit unions, this type of marketing—particularly Financial Education programming—is especially powerful. Why?
3 Reasons Why Financial Education is the Best Content Marketing Tool for Credit Unions
- Credit unions are perfectly positioned to instill knowledge. As community-founded institutional brands, credit unions are already perceived as a valuable source of financial information. Adding financial education to your marketing toolkit should be a natural extension of your other offerings.
- Financial education offers powerful ROI. One study on online education found that 20 percent of consumers will purchase a product as a result of their experience, with 94 percent coming away with a more favorable perception of the brand. And a 2014 FICO survey found that after a bank-sponsored financial education program, respondents not only used more banking services, but also became more loyal to their institutions.. While not surprising, it is clear that adult financial education can create that long-term loyalty while obviously being just a good thing to do.
- Consumers are seeking financial education. Today, one survey found 75 percent of adults admit that they could benefit from financial education, and sadly almost 23 percent are unable to pay all their bills on time. This may be understating the need. Community First Credit Union found supporting results. After conducting hundreds of interviews, they found that 100 percent of interviewees agreed that financial education was important.
When Community First surveyed a group of members and prospects on financial education, we found that a whopping 100 percent of those we spoke to agreed that they needed more financial education. Together, in partnership with EVERFI, we then offered online financial education programming to our members and promoted it through our marketing channels—the results speak for themselves:
- 40% increase in account openings in a single day. After we launched our financial wellness program, we experienced a 40% increase in account openings in a single day.
- 20% conversion rate on program emails. We marketed the new program through social media, website banners, and email. Emails that linked members to a landing page to start the financial education program saw a conversion rate of 20% during the initial campaign launch.
- Participation rates that exceeded expectations. Out of the our 122,000 members, more than 7,000 have finished at least one learning module, surpassing the original target goal of reaching 5% of their membership by almost a thousand members.
- A $2 million increase in product sales. Products that were promoted during learning modules saw increased sales as a result of the program. For example, when we promoted debt consolidation loans during one module, we saw a 41% increase in sales over a campaign the year before that did not include online financial education—an increase of nearly $2 million.
Consumers are crying out for Financial Education, and credit unions that step in to fill this gap will reap rewards. For more information on how Community First Credit Union helped fill the Financial Education gap while increasing sales, download our full white paper here.
Co-Authored By: Steve Rice
 “Credit unions and financial literacy.” Lending Solutions Incorporated. 16 Oct. 2015. Web. 16 Aug. 2017
 Poll, Harris. “The 2015 Consumer Financial Literacy Survey.” The National Foundation for Credit Counseling. Nerd Wallet. March 2015. Web. 16 Aug 2017