Money 20/20 buzz speaks to opportunity for credit unions

Key is using in-demand tech tools to leverage and build trusted relationships, especially with millennials.

by: Marc Rapport

We’ve arrived at the point where the convergence of mobile and security gives credit unions perhaps unprecedented opportunity to leverage the trusted relationship they have with members.

That was my conclusion after three days at Money 20/20. Why? Because the mantra was “engage the consumer, reward the consumer, build loyalty with the consumer, and protect the consumer.”

That’s what credit unions are supposed to be doing. And I didn’t see anything techie at the Las Vegas show that credit unions couldn’t deploy if they wanted, including myriad loyalty apps and several know-your-customer plays. (With the notable exception of virtual currency platforms.)

It also is apparent that boundaries are dissolving between telecom, high tech, and financial services providers, producing unprecedented collaboration at the same time as bitter competition (Wal-Mart and the Merchant Customer Exchange vs. Apple Pay and the major card brands, for instance.)

As conference attendee Belinda Caillouet, chief operations and information officer at Spokane Teachers Credit Union ($2B, Spokane, WA), observes, “It’s interesting to hear that the big guys — BofA, Citi Bank, Facebook, Microsoft, Living Social, Visa — are talking about collaboration and the importance of working together. We’ll see if that really plays out.”

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