Consumers demand a digital experience in virtually every area of their lives. Banking is no exception.
According to Pew Research Center, 57% of Americans have used their phones for online banking—and this percentage jumps to 70% for 18- to 29-year-old smartphone owners.
Plus, 69% of Americans rely on online research before making purchases. That’s good to know as you try to convince consumers to choose your credit union for financial accounts, insurance, mortgages, investment services, credit cards, and more.
You must reach members and prospects where they are and, for a growing number of people, that’s a digital channel.
Not sure how to maximize your digital channels? Start with these three steps.
Although it requires a larger upfront investment, targeting is your friend.
Research has shown, for example, that millennial parents were much more likely than millennial nonparents to be responsive to financial service advertising. And 30% of parents—vs. 12% of nonparents—said they’d do an online search to help shape their decision-making after learning about a product or service through other media, according to Mintel.
Good tools to consider: social media ads (like those on Facebook) and nonbranded keyword searches (“buy car insurance”).
Sure, these may have heftier price tags but they pay off by delivering consumers who have already qualified themselves—either through their social media profile or search query—and thus are more likely to buy.
Did you know, for instance, that 61% of millennial parents bought something because the brand or business posted on social media?
2. Punch up the quality of your creative
Your credit union is competing with an array of national players and your creative must reflect this.
You’ve already made a substantial investment to ensure you’re talking to the right audience. Now, make sure your images and messaging resonate.
For example, do you want to connect with newlyweds looking to purchase life insurance? Make sure the creative you use parallels this life change and the importance of obtaining life insurance as a newlywed.
3. Deliver a seamless, user-friendly experience
Once a prospect clicks on your link, every aspect of the experience must be painless, engaging, and rewarding—beginning at the landing page the prospect arrives on and carrying through the entire customer lifecycle.
A growing number of consumers—including 50% of nonmember millennials—are comfortable using a bank that is completely online.
Do you deliver the functionality they’ve come to expect from your competitors or will members—and nonmember visitors—be frustrated by a clunky site?
Do you offer financial tools and resources that attract and retain website visitors and encourage them to return in the future?
And have you upped your mobile capabilities? Forty percent of credit union members and 54% of nonmembers have expressed a preference for using their cellphones to make payments, and that percentage is likely to grow.
This makes responsive design critical: consumers expect to have the same high-quality experience, regardless of whether they’re connecting with you via laptop, tablet, or mobile.
Although consumers of every age care about digital channels, they’re a must-have for millennials—making them a must-have for credit unions.
To learn more about millennials, what they care about, and how to reach them, stay tuned for CUNA Mutual Group’s “What Matters Now™: Insights from Millennials” research to be released on March 22.
NATALIE CRAIN is director of media and marketing strategy for TruStage, CUNA Mutual Group's consumer brand. Contact her at 608-665-7823.
*Information provided in this article is a summary and should not be construed as legal services or advice.