The rise of immigration has significantly transformed American culture throughout the last decade, resulting in industries struggling to compete through embracing diversity and delivering exceptional service. The financial service industry is feeling the impact of this diversity, and building member relationships is the key to creating an environment that fosters quality service.
The Hispanic market within the Unites States is growing at an incredible rate, and the influx in Texas and California is spreading throughout the country. Many financial institutions are ‘waiting to see’ what occurs with this market, while the alternative financial sector is capitalizing on the moment. The census numbers are here, and this market is quickly becoming a huge player in the financial services industry. Only 65% of Hispanics have a financial relationship with a mainstream financial institution versus over 90% of White or non-Hispanics.* What are we doing to reach out to this market?
One great way for credit unions to get involved with the Hispanic Market is through education. Financial institutions interested in taking a more active role should help their members better understand their personal finances and instruct them in realizing the importance of saving and investing for the future. Many such institutions have encouraged their members to learn more about their finances through computer based consumer education tutorials. These state-of-the-art tutorials are available in Spanish and serve as a valuable tool for educating members on how to properly manage their share draft and share accounts, use credit wisely, and emphasize the importance of investing for the future and more.
Financial consumers are not homogeneous. They have very distinct individual characteristics, with specific values, ideas, and preferences. Harland Educational Services works hard to understand the ever-changing market, and we provide innovative solutions to assist financial institutions in reaching out to consumers. Financial institutions must recognize that understanding their consumers can help to nourish core competencies as well as develop strategic positions for the future.
*Bank Marketing, Kaiser Survey, 2002
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