Building Member Relationships – For the Sports Fan

by: Penne D. VanderBush, CeM, Marketing Development Coordinator,VSECU

From little league coaches to college training you’ve got a playbook full of useful sports tactics you probably haven’t been using in the credit union industry.  Let’s look at some of the skills you’ve already developed and how to apply them to member relationships.

“It’s Not About Winning Or Losing, But How You Play The Game”
You’re not going to book every loan, always have the best rates and be able to offer every service that a member or potential member may want, however the impression they have from the experience is equally important. If they feel like you genuinely cared about their finances and tried to offer them relevant products and services that would meet their needs then they’ll consider you again in the future. Any actions that feel ‘un-sportsman like’ will guarantee a flag with the penalty of lost business. Assessing how your member-facing staff are ‘playing’ is key for growing new membership and retaining existing members.

“Get On ‘em Like White on Rice!”
Remember hearing this defensive strategy from your coach? Very similar in the credit union industry except it’s an offensive move here. Looking at everything from your onboarding program to tradeshow booths, are you actively championing for all the benefits of joining your credit union? Are you telling anyone and everyone about the extended Saturday hours, where to download the mobile banking app and the benefits of your rewards program? If you don’t tell them –they don’t know. It’s that simple. Get your staff excited to “get on ‘em” and start the conversation about the benefits of the credit union. This is a great technique for outreach initiatives, assuming of course there is control to avoid a personal foul.

The Celebratory Butt Slap
Although the idea of an over enthusiastic branch manager jogging through the lobby slapping members on the rear for adding to their savings account or making a loan payment on time is amusing, let’s not take this one literally. When was the last time you metaphorically gave your members a pat on the rear for a job well done? Have you considered sending movie passes to all members that made their loan payments on time for the entire year? How about sending all the members that moved to e-Services a token of appreciation for saving you operating expenses? We are often quick to send a fee notice for making a mistake but it’s rare we take the extra step to say ‘thank you for doing it right.’ This is a great practice for building member loyalty.

In the midst of baseball playoffs and football season underway it’s a great time to run a [discount] double check on your team’s performance and see if there’s room for strategic growth in building member relationships.

Penne D. VanderBush

Penne D. VanderBush

With over 10 years of experience in financial industry marketing, and former VP of Marketing for the largest state-chartered credit union in Vermont, Penne joined the FI GROW Solutions team ... Web: Details