More than half of credit union members are highly engaged with their credit unions, according to a recent survey by Gallup. This means credit unions have done the hard work of building engagement and trust, and the next stage of “good service” is ensuring credit unions are meeting the higher needs of members.
The survey points out however that many members and customers still turn to “big-money banks for big-money advice, such as retirement, insurance and investment products.”
Timing is key for members seeking and receiving high-value financial advice, noted research from CUNA Mutual Group and the Filene Research Institute. Sixty-nine percent of consumers want to engage in investment conversations when the timing is right, and 45% look for advice when their life circumstances change.
“Credit unions should realize that staff may be intimidated by asking questions of members because they feel it’s intrusive,” said Angela Prestil, CUNA director of business development. “However, staff have the opportunity to increase member engagement beyond the typical checking account to ultimately build awareness of the deep well of their credit union’s products and services.”
Developing a consultative environment through programs such as CUNA’s Creating Member Loyalty gives staff “the confidence to move beyond the friendly conversation into a deeper, consultative dialogue and havethe right conversation with the right member at the right time,” Prestil added.
When credit unions have a conversation with their members about investment products, Gallup said, their members are far more likely to buy than customers of national banks.
“By proactively helping customers and members better understand their financial needs and providing solutions aligned with those needs, community banks and credit unions can earn share of wallet by earning a reputation as trusted advisers,” Gallup concluded.