Why Are Members Closing Accounts and Leaving Your Credit Union?

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“Some of them are just passing away!” I’m a marketer, not a doctor, so I can’t help with that.

“68% of consumers leave a business relationship because of a perceived attitude of indifference.” I’m a marketer; I may be able to help with that. But let’s dive deeper into this statement and follow my golden rule of “asking a freaking question.” What causes that indifference, and what needs to change within your credit union to build a lasting relationship?

But… we love our members! We have good rates and good service! Whatever message or reason that new member joined the credit union was enough to earn their business, but what are you doing to keep that business? Actions speak louder than words. What I find is that the mindset of most credit union leaders is acquisition. Grow members. Get them in the door! When we say mission accomplished, we rinse, wash, repeat, and turn a blind eye to that new member and focus on the next new member.

Diving deeper into that 68%, the indifference comes from the attitude of the credit union employees. This could be the CEO at the top whose goal is to grow members, or the teller who believes their only job is to handle that transaction in front of them and move on to the next.

So, what can you do about this? I’m only going to scratch the surface with these ideas:

  1. What is your BHAG? In our marketing plans, you’ll find “The Big 3” goals which are related to the balance sheet, KPIs, and growth metrics. You’ll also find the BHAG, which is a goal that is member-focused. For example: “By 2027, at least 50% of all new members will see an improved credit score after joining the credit union.” This is a goal that goes beyond marketing and ROA. It is a rally cry to the team that, in no uncertain terms, is the mission of the credit union and each employee. At every touchpoint, we care about helping our member improve their credit score so they can experience more joy in life. An improved credit score offers more opportunities for lower interest rates, better options in renting an apartment, and better and less expensive options for insurance; the list goes on. Credit unions that have a solid member-focused purpose, mission, and vision and turn those words into actions have a better chance of retaining those members you work so hard to acquire.
  2. Is anybody there? Besides a quarterly newsletter and the occasional mass email or Facebook post, how are you reaching out to that newly acquired member to let them know you still care? I think about my Tesla purchase last year. It was a smooth transaction and an enjoyable experience, but what caught my attention is the communication from them since purchasing the Tesla. I receive regular updates about available updates, maintenance tips, and fun “easter eggs” hidden within the system that keep me constantly curious about the car and finding new ways to engage with it. In past vehicle purchases, if there was any communication, it was a discount on an oil change or tires—a cheap cross-sell, not engagement.
  3. Education is key. I often hear the word “training” tossed around quite a bit, and that’s not a bad thing. However, as leaders, we tend to expect that we can tell our team members something once and then move on, never needing to address it again. Then, we get riled up when we see things starting to slide back to the way they’ve always been done. A leader from my past likened education to taking a shower. We do it every day because if we don’t, we’d stink! Education and training should be ongoing endeavors with our team, especially when it comes to our purpose, mission, and vision. Showing our team how we put those words into action will remove the indifference from our members and create an ongoing experience with your credit union brand.

Rather than a constant churn of members to prop up your credit union membership goals, what if we could retain 68% more of our members by showing them some love?

Need help? For over 15 years we have used our time-tested credit union marketing strategies and tactics to help credit unions grow by engaging, educating, and retaining the next generation of credit union members. We can help you too.

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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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