We’ve already heard about the record dividends some credit unions gave out to members at the end of 2012. Some credit unions, however, have goals to give more in order to make more in 2013.
The “pay-it-forward” approach is one way credit unions can set themselves apart from the banks in their communities. Explaining the cooperative difference to potential members tends to trip up credit unions. Paying it forward with good deeds will show your community the cooperative difference with action. We are “people helping people,” after all.
What better way to show the cooperative difference than to live it out locally? Credit unions can sponsor community events or take part in random acts of kindness to build publicity and public image without competing with big bank marketing budgets.
We’ve seen credit unions step up and make donations after natural disasters. We’ve also seen press releases about credit unions donating to local charities. Acts of good will during times of need not only demonstrates the cooperative philosophy of people helping people, but it can also generate brand awareness in a different way.
In our ever-connected world of social media, praise and criticism are shared with more people than ever before. Digital word of mouth can help spread awareness of your credit union’s brand without blowing the marketing budget.
When you’re planning out 2013, think outside of the box for community interactions. Giveaways, contests, and random acts of kindness can get your credit union’s name out there while building its public image. Use the pay-it-forward philosophy to gain exposure outside of the trade publications.