We’re betting you’ve already started the process of allocating your marketing spend for 2023. Are you confident in where it is best to put those dollars? Traditional print ads and direct marketing campaigns still have their place, but today, your members are consuming digital-era media. There’s an old marketing adage: Go where your consumers are. Today, they’re online.
Financial institutions have been slower to adopt digital marketing than other industries like retail, but now it’s a must, not a nice-to-have. Here are three “next generation” marketing tactics for credit unions to consider as they’re setting their marketing budgets for the coming year.
Create a video series
Whether they’re DIYing their leaky bathroom sink or considering the benefits of refinancing their mortgage, people expect “a video for it.” Last year, the average person spent 100 minutes per day watching videos online. And they retain 95% of those video messages they’re seeing, compared to only 10% when reading the same message in text. It’s just too powerful a media tool to ignore.
There are a lot of potential channels out there. Which is best for your video message? According to Statista, 210 million people in the U.S. watched content on YouTube monthly in 2022. Worldwide, that number reaches 2.6 billion active monthly users. Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram are also power players. What a great medium for a series of financial advice.
Not all video platforms will be the right fit. Be sure to align your marketing strategies with the platform that has the audience which makes the most sense for the messaging you want to deliver.
And, although the idea of making a video can seem daunting, you don’t have to be Steven Spielberg to do it. Start small, using the video setting on your phone. Take a step up from there and pull that video into editing software like Canva, iMovie, or Vimeo, and you’re on your way. We’re sure there’s a video on YouTube explaining just how it’s done.
Consider influencer marketing
What are influencers, exactly? In a nutshell, they are people with enormous online followings who partner with brands. Influencers post about their partner brands online to their legion of followers. The reason it works so well is the trust factor. Influencers’ followers trust the influencer and are likely to take action on their recommendations.
It’s an astonishingly effective way to target younger consumers. The influencer industry is expected to hit $16.4 billion worldwide this year, according to The State of Influencer Marketing 2022. Sure, when you’re talking about beauty products or hospitality or fashion brands, influencers are a great fit. But for credit unions? It’s not as strange as it may seem. It’s about giving the CU a “face,” a personal way to connect with members and potential members. And that personalization is the CU’s wheelhouse.
If you think that’s a stretch — using influencers for the finance industry — just asked the folks who attended FinCon 2022, where the theme was: “Where Media and Money Meet.” And the entire goal was to help personal finance content creators and brands create better content, reach their audience, and make more money.
Influencers can talk about how they started a business with a loan from a CU, create a series of financial advice videos for young people, or highlight tactics to navigate this looming recession with the support of their local CU. But it’s not just for the younger generations. Spire Credit Union, located in Minnesota, created a series of ads featuring the CU’s CEO traveling around the area in an old-fashioned truck, talking to people (even famous local folks) about why they’re CU members. They also partnered with a local television station to create a series of financial advice pieces.
Include open internet advertising
What’s the difference between the open internet and a walled garden?
When we’re talking about posting videos on YouTube or partnering with an influencer on social media, we’re talking about what is referred to in the marketing trade as a “walled garden.” Walled gardens oftentimes require personal information from users before access is granted — think of Facebook, Instagram, or any form of social media. You need an account before being able to access the content there.
The open internet, by contrast, is nearly everything else you find online. It’s the vast world wide web, accessible with no restrictions on users and no “price of admission,” so to speak. You don’t have to give your personal information or create an account to participate.
Why advertise there? It boils down to the intentions users have when visiting the sites.
According to recent research by The Harris Poll, users visit social media for entertainment. Think of cat videos or posts by friends and family. Users also visit the open internet for information, and when looking to purchase something.
The disconnect for marketers here is, marketing budgets are typically focused on social media walled gardens, despite the fact that, according to Harris, users visit the open internet more often and stay longer.
There’s also the bonus of retargeting. Whether you know the term or not, you know what it is. Say you’re searching for a credit card with good balance transfer terms. You find one, get the information, but leave the site without applying for it. Very shortly thereafter, when you visit another unrelated site, you’ll encounter an ad for the credit card you just researched. Behind the scenes, it’s a complicated process involving tagging your site visitors and bidding on ad placements, all of which is done in milliseconds. What it means for advertisers is the ability to follow people around the open internet and stay top of mind to those who may be interested or that have intent to buy a certain product or service.
Bottom line, digital marketing is essential for today’s financial institutions. Meet your members and potential members where they are — social media and on the open internet. And connect with them through a variety of formats such as video, specifically designed to be easily digestible and memorable.
For additional resources for growing relationships with your members, visit segmint.com.