How establishing a “why” can help credit union marketing efforts

People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it. This is the driving idea behind Simon Sinek’s TED Talk,“How Great Leaders Inspire Action.” In this talk, Sinek says that understanding the values behind an organization is fundamental to knowing what they do and how they do it. The essential beliefs behind an organization are, as Sinek calls it, their “why.” By establishing and incorporating a “why” into everything they do, companies can differentiate themselves from their competition and connect with their audience on a deeper level.

In general, credit unions can capitalize on their cooperative model and not-for-profit nature. Presumably, all credit unions value their members and want to provide them with outstanding products and services. But organizations that are successful identify their unique “why” and live it from the inside out. CUs that desire a strong brand image must find the specific reasons for why they do what they do and focus on consistently portraying those values every day. It’s not enough to simply believe in the values that drive an organization; those values must be outstandingly apparent to the public through every touchpoint.

The challenge for CUs is digging deep enough to find what makes their “why” different from their competition. “Almost every credit union believes it has great products and services, which does little to differentiate you from competitors,”  wrote Kat Anstine, COO of BYM Agency. “Instead, find the thing that makes your organization truly unique from all others. The thing it stands for above all else.” Whether it’s versatility, affordability, reliability, etc., CUs have to prioritize and own certain values if they want to stand out.

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