DUNCAN, Okla. (2/19/15)--It was a line resembling one that might form before a big concert, or before the release of a highly anticipated book. But those who assembled outside a branch of Halliburton Employees FCU, Duncan, Okla., Friday weren't waiting for the next Harry Potter installment; they were looking for a special interest rate on an auto loan.
Halliburton staffers Jennifer Janz, left, Jared Smith, Daniel Baxter, Kyle Ozuna and Phil Van Burskirk were on hand Friday to deliver "sweet" deals on auto loans. (Halliburton Employees FCU Photo)
Two hours before the $145 million-asset credit union opened, members who had been pre-approved began lining up for the "Sweetheart of a Deal" that, for the third straight year, the credit union was offering close to Valentine's Day, Jackie Haines, Halliburton marketing and business development, told News Now.
The first $500,000 in loans received a special interest rate of 0.99%, which ultimately went to the first 17 applicants--all of whom showed up before the doors opened the day before Valentine's Day. The remaining applicants received a special rate of 1.49%, and by the end of the day roughly $3.2 million in auto loans had been financed.
"Somebody was out there waiting at 7 a.m., and we didn't open until 9," Haines said. "When I got there at 8, I went out to see who we had out there" and handed out coffee and donuts.
The popularity of the promotion has grown since its first year. Last year the credit union funded $1.82 million in loans in one day, nearly $1.5 million less than this year.
Haines credits the promotion's growing success to a ramped-up marketing effort, her participation in the local Chamber of Commerce and word of mouth.
This year, the credit union used social media, email marketing, teller line fliers and newspaper advertising.
The effort also led to 20 new members, including seven who added an additional service such as a checking account, Haines said.
Perhaps it was love at first interest rate.