New Ways to Add Value for Your Membership

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Shocked young woman posing isolated over pink wall background play games by mobile phone.

I’m kind of an app freak. Well, really, I am a rebate, savings, make some money on the side app freak. I love them. My obsession began a few years ago when I was trying to do a “fun apps to help save you $$” newsletter article. I downloaded, tested them, hated some, loved others. I scanned bar codes, receipts, clicked through to sites from the apps to earn some percentage of my purchases. Saw some become obsolete or consolidated and of course new improved, more innovative, easier to use ones crop up. Years later I still love them. I have my three favs currently and….more importantly….my kids LOVE THEM!

Ok. So, moms and dads out there… this blog’s for you.

“Mom, can I have $? I’m going to the mall.”

“Mom, this month’s Ipsy is on fire. Can I subscribe monthly for only $12 with your credit card?”

“Mom, this bag of 35 ring pops that I absolutely must have is only $7. Can I buy it? (meaning – I’m putting it in your Target cart.)

OMG!!! It is endless. The requests drive me crazy, add up and quite literally make me want to Van Gogh myself so I don’t have to hear them. (Side note, I am not in any way diminishing or making light of Vincent’s depression or mental illness. Only noted for illustrative purposes.)

My answer, I had them put their overpriced phones with monthly reoccurring payments, insurance costs and complaints about lost chargers to good use.

Shopkick. Fetch. Ibotta. I love them. I find them fun to use. They’re not time consuming, and it’s a great way to earn gift cards or cash back for me, and better yet, for the Wilder girls. Either way, it’s a win for me and my wallet. If you haven’t used these apps, they are really cool.

Quick overview. With Shopkick, you keep it open and your Bluetooth on as you shop. You earn points as you walk in (or by) certain stores, and you can earn more points for scanning certain products. My girls love to walk around Target and scan products, and it keeps them busy while I’m shopping, and it keeps them throwing things in my cart. Plus, they are constantly earning $5 or $10 gift cards to places like Target and Ulta. I’ve been using this for a little over a year and have earned $150 in Amazon gift cards. And the girls have earned about 1/3 of that combined. Nice score for them!

Fetch. Love this app! You scan your receipts from grocery and big box stores like my beloved Target. The app awards you points for each receipt. BUT! The best thing about this app is that it tracks your spending. I’ve been using it since March, and I’ve spent $5,221,80 – which is approximately 26.27% of my spending. I’m actually surprised it is only that. To date (since March) I’ve earned $75 in gift cards to Amazon. Not bad.

And lastly Ibotta. I have been using it for about two years and only regularly for 15 months or so. I found it cumbersome but kept trying since the rewards were decent. They’ve streamlined and simplified the experience and now it is easy breezy lemon squeezy. I’m just shy of $600 in total earnings.

My point is, in this world of new tech, new ways to “earn income”, new places to hold disposable income, and a push for financial education and literacy, wouldn’t it be neat to partner with these app and use them as teaching and savings tools for the younger generations?

My girls, 13 and 10, a saver and a spender respectively, both enjoy these apps for the same reason – the need/want for spending power and the lack of ways to earn towards it. (without asking mom).

How can we as credit unions tie into this “earnings game”? Are there ways we can create partnerships with the Shopkicks, the Fetches, the Ibottas?

I would love to see a partnership with Ibotta that gave members the option of splitting the reward between the gift card and a deposit into your credit union youth savings account. Possibly with a percentage bonus earned for reaching a specific number of deposits or reaching a savings amount goal.

You value your members but can always do more.

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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

Copywriter

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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