Middle-class Americans don’t define success by how much money they have, CUNA Mutual Group research indicates, instead prioritizing family and significant relationships.
But 62% worry daily about their financial stability, and 34% say they don’t have a banking relationship—lending credence to credit unions’ focus on this demographic as a primary source of membership growth and retention.
CUNA Mutual Group's Eric Hansing discussed statistics from the comprehensive What Matters Now research project Thursday at the CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council Conference in Las Vegas.
"Middle America trusts credit unions," says Hansing, vice president of Life, AD&D, and Media for TruStage, CUNA Mutual Group's consumer brand.
TruStage gathered insights from more than 25,000 individuals using a combination of quantitative, qualitative, and social media research methods. The project draws similarities and differences between credit union members and broader middle-income Americans in terms of core demographics and lifestyle preferences to show how this population defines success across generations.
“We use consumer insights to continuously improve our member experience, including how we develop media plans, design products, and optimize each consumer touch point,” says Susan Sachatello, senior vice president, TruStage. “Our goal was to add dimension to what we have learned from middle-income credit union members and nonmembers alike to become more relevant in their everyday lives.”
Raising good and happy kids ranks atop middle-income Americans’ measures of success at 38%, followed by having a great partner relationship at 36%, with financial stability and good health tied at 33%.
Meanwhile, only 6% of this group defines success as wealth.
Members’ viewpoints aren’t static, cautions Sachatello, who notes TruStage will continue to assess attitudes among this prime credit union demographic.
“We know that what matters most to members evolves over time as people go through different life stages or as our economy fluctuates,” Sachatello says. “In fact, 77% of the members we talked with said their definition of success has changed over time.”
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