3 Tips For Marketing Success in 2021

A jungle with a lot of tree roots

There’s nothing more painful than failure, especially when it comes to marketing. All of that time and money gone faster than beans through a cowboy. You allocated enough in your marketing budget. You adjusted your strategy. You had some fun ideas, but still, nothing. What went wrong?

Before you stress, here’s some good news. Perhaps you DID have a sufficient budget. Maybe your strategy was spot on. And your “fun” ideas could have been exactly what was needed. There’s a good chance you made one (or more) of the three most common mistakes I see in credit union marketing.

  1. Checking on the “roots.” What in the world does that mean? Who puts a new plant in the dirt and then pulls it up every few days to see how the roots are growing? Not too many people. But I see this happen time and time again with the execution of marketing A great strategy is implemented, but instead of giving it time to show results, the post-mortems begin almost as fast as the campaign was launched. And if results aren’t showing up quickly enough, we start fiddling with the strategy or creative. That’s the same as pulling it up by the roots and replanting it over and over again.

Consider this: Would you rather your strategy fail in six weeks or succeed in twelve?

Sounds like a no-brainer in this context, but if the answer is that you want it to succeed in twelve months, then be patient and give your strategy and creative time to bear fruit. I’m not saying to stay the course when you’re truly failing. Establishing interim benchmarks along the way is smart, but resist the temptation to pull the entire strategy or idea out by the roots and constantly fiddle with it – all you’re doing is killing the plant and your credit union’s chance for success.

  1. Right strategy, wrong tactics? Before you throw out your strategy, consider that the problem may be with your tactics. Many people wrongly assume when you talk about marketing you’re speaking tactically – e.g. Facebook posts, direct mail, billboards, brochures, etc.

Flashback to 2011 when Netflix made what could have been a do or die gaffe with its pricing structure. Some business experts ballparked the streaming service could have lost up to 30% of its recurring revenue because of how Netflix communicated the split subscriber pricing plans between DVD rentals and streaming.

Looking back we see that splitting the DVD rental business from the streaming download business made good business sense. The problem wasn’t with the strategy; the problem was with the tactics. The next time you aren’t satisfied with your results, ask this:

Is it really the strategy at fault, or does the problem lie with execution?

  1. Right strategy, wrong person. The implementation of a new strategy sometimes means hiring someone or bringing in a marketing consulting firm specifically tasked with the implementation of the strategy. Sometimes, we get the hiring wrong. Hiring is difficult, and we often just dump the whole idea – strategy and all – rather than go through the whole torturous process again. Next time you realize you’ve put the wrong person or firm in place to execute a strategy, don’t dump the strategy. Instead, find the right person or team to implement it.

Did I strike a nerve? Are you feeling like 2020 could have had a better outcome if you didn’t constantly pull your strategy out by the roots, used the wrong tactics, or hired the wrong person or team to handle your credit union’s marketing? The good news, it’s not too late to get it right for 2021.

Need to talk it out? Want to explore your options? Let’s talk! I love problem-solving. Just email me at bo@yourmarketingco.com. I promise you won’t get a sales pitch – just perspective.

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Reh Harvey

Vice President of Digital Strategy

Reh Harvey, our Vice President of Digital Strategy, leads with diligence and fervor. Having previously been a member of Team YMC, he is excited to return to such an amazing culture and even more amazing people (his words)! Through his experience in the marketing world, he’s found the key to success is to stay on the cutting edge and to always keep evolving.
Although originally drawn to marketing for its lack of math, Reh now finds himself doing more math than he would’ve bargained for. But his self discipline and positive attitude make it easy for him to laugh and take it in stride. Hoping to one day visit Japan and enjoy some premium Sushi, Reh lives life by his creed: Be a good human. Do good work. And above all, just keep going.

Hailey Madej

Graphic Designer

As YMC’s in-house Graphic Designer, Hailey possesses an eye for detail and a drive to innovate. It’s no surprise though since being creative runs in the family! Inspired from an early age by her mom’s work as a Graphic Designer, Hailey is a seasoned expert whose talents bring vitality and accessibility to every project. As a UX/UI designer, she expertly blends the intuitive and the creative for all to enjoy.
In addition to the occasional freelance project, Hailey also lends her abilities to supporting art initiatives within her community, such as the Belleville Mural Project. Her favorite aspect of joining the YMC team is the friendly, uplifting culture and breadth of design tasks. When it comes to marketing, she believes in pushing boundaries and maybe breaking some rules to capture her audience’s attention. Her advice to those just starting out? “Always seek quality over quantity.”

Dexter Ochoa

Development Assistant

When it comes to blending logical thinking and creative problem solving, Dexter’s abilities are undeniable! Beginning his career as a Web Developer, he’s no stranger to the wide world of Marketing and Advertising. Calling Biñan City in the Philippines home, Dexter has a burning desire to visit the Alpine peaks and valleys of Switzerland. While that journey may be far off, he is still no stranger to international travel. While visiting Japan, he was able to enjoy his favorite delicacy: Sushi and Sashimi. He also learned unexpected facts about Japanese Yen, specifically that it has special markings for the blind to know its value!

Living life by his motto to “Do good even if the world is unfair,” Dexter would also advise his younger self, “It’s hard, but you’re doing good!” Whether he’s enjoying a cup of coffee in the morning or the occasional Pale Pilsen in the evening, Dexter is eager to work with the talented professionals of YMC, and we’re just as eager to add his talent to the team as well! His marketing words of wisdom? “Be creative, and just do what you want!”

Andrew Wyche


Hailing from the NC state capital (that’s Raleigh if you didn’t know), Andrew is YMC’s Copywriter extraordinaire. That’s why he knows that “The verb form of ‘reconnaissance’ is ‘reconnoiter.’ The former is, strictly speaking, a noun.” Seriously, he knows his words and he’ll use those words to get bold and weird (in a good way) with his copy. Fuelled by a love for pasta, shellfish, a good single malt, or a meal consisting of all three, Andrew navigates life with a motto engraved in his heart: “Choose kindness. Always.” It is this guiding principle that has led him to explore the realm of marketing, driven by a desire to connect with people in meaningful ways. As he continues to chase his dreams, one bucket list item stands out above the rest – a pilgrimage to Scotland. With his heart set on adventure and his pen poised for creativity, Andrew’s journey is far from over.

Alex VanHaasteren

Senior Web Developer

Alex is YMC’s Senior Web Developer and, as the title suggests, she is an absolute pro! While she initially started in graphic design – working long and hard to expertly bring concepts to life – she also felt drawn to technology and applying her natural ability to problem solve. Web Development proved the perfect blend of her creative passion and technical savvy.

When Alex is out with friends – including her YMC colleagues – she’s up for Greek cuisine or some good pulled pork BBQ washed down with Diet Coke. Or an Old Fashioned, if the occasion demands. Someday, she hopes to go to Africa on a safari. Hopefully she’ll see a giraffe in the wild, because – as she’s pointed out – its neck is too short to reach the ground!

When she isn’t jamming out to T-Swift, she’s happy to impart some marketing words of wisdom, “Aim to create something unforgettable.” For day-to-day inspiration, she would remind you of two fundamental truths: You decide your happiness, and Ice cream is its own food group—not just a dessert.

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