Ryan Housefield

CRM is your common bond

The movement has not changed. The technology has.

December 7, 2020

Credit unions were created to serve a common bond—not for profit, but for service. I would argue the common bond has shifted from a shared work or education experience into a broader relationship with members and communities. The mission of people helping people remains unchanged. How it is realized has evolved.

If there is one takeaway from 2020, it’s to recognize member circumstances are unique and require personalized service. That’s hard to do without knowing your members, their needs, and their financial goals on an enterprise-wide level.

"People are saying, 'See me!'" says Jerrod Keller, chief experience officer at $1.7 billion asset TwinStar Credit Union in Lacey, Wash. "Without the use of a relationship management system and our partnership with Marquis’ suite of services, we would have underserved our members’ experience expectations."

Customer relationship management (CRM) captures conversations, monitors transaction activity, and displays actionable member data so any staff member can connect with members using relevant and personal communications. CRM utilizes member data to build more engaged relationships through an integrated member journey.

"Data is a critical piece of every campaign we do," says Nancy Trennel, chief marketing officer at $1.7 billion asset First Community Credit Union in Houston, Texas. However, many credit unions still don’t take advantage of all CRM has to offer.

Financial institutions that incorporate CRM into their service develop stickier relationships with their members. Credit unions leveraging CRM will experience an increase in sales. But this isn’t about dollars; it’s about an increase in member connection. Better service leads to a stronger relationship.

"Our partnership with Marquis allows us to change our lens and become better at relationship personalization, our member journey map, and, most importantly, measuring the impact of our mission and vision," says Keller. CRM is a proven tool that enables you to grow and retain existing relationships while discovering new ones.

Most CRM systems don’t account for the nuances of the financial services industry. Generic CRMs leverage information on age, ethnicity, and gender without fear of compliance landmines. The situation is quite different for credit unions.

With the input of industry experts, Marquis created CallTrax NEXT, a CRM that uses terms recognizable for the financial industry. This unique CRM integrates service, sales, and marketing automation with organized, actionable data. Marquis also helps to assess credit union sales and service processes to customize a system that enhances them.

"Having Marquis as a partner is like having additional marketing staff," Trennel says. "Their expertise in gathering the right data and their support in executing the plan is tremendously valuable."

RYAN HOUSEFIELD is senior vice president of sales at Marquis.