Providing exceptional member service is at the heart of every credit union’s values. However, with increasing competition in the banking world, good service alone will not be enough to keep members truly satisfied. So what is it that members are seeking now? Surprisingly enough, it’s not always lower rates. Savvy members are still interested in competitive pricing, but a member’s loyalty doesn’t lie with bargain banks either. What members want is customization. Taking an example from another industry, one of the first organizations to provide a unique and customized experience is a fast-casual restaurant many know and love: Chipotle.
Some might argue that any restaurant offers customization. For example, if you don’t like pickles, then you can ask for them to be excluded from your McDonalds burger. Although this is customization, it does not provide that same level of experience the consumer demands. Chipotle offers more than minor adaptations to their product. Burrito lovers are able to choose each ingredient that goes into their meal and through their online ordering platform, customization goes down to a micro level where they can mark how much of each ingredient they want. The “build your own” concept was not a revolutionary idea created by Chipotle but they were able to build their cult following through customization in combination with the overall experience, even recovering from food poisoning outbreaks that would have been certain demise for other restaurant chains. As you consider this success story, other similar brands probably come to mind… everyone knows a Starbucks addict. Most likely, it’s not the coffee itself that drives the massive loyalty that Starbucks enjoys, not to mention the percentage of income people are willing to spend. The level of detail their ordering system allows makes “Emma” feel special when her name is displayed on her recyclable cup at pickup of her grande non-fat, no-whip, double shot, half decaf caramel mochaccino with 2 ice cubes.
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