Even the name “Zipcar” connotates speed and simplicity. And indeed the business is known for giving carless commuters an alternative to mass transportation with their easy rental car program.
At the CTIA MobileCon conference last week, Zipcar CEO Scott Griffith described the company’s business model as honing in on convenient features at all levels of service – starting with member onboarding.
Like credit unions, Zipcar’s carsharing program is member-based. Its members can easily rent cars on an hourly or daily basis with online reservation system through their phone or Internet. They can get a car immediately or reserve up to a year in advance, and use their chip-embedded membership card to unlock it. Reservations include insurance, a gas card and reimbursements for typical maintenance.
Zipcars easy-to-use program has drawn more than 730,000 members worldwide, as of September and the company is now making the process of joining the program is even easier. And credit unions have much to learn from Zipcar’s recent focus on faster onboarding.
Zipcar members previously had to walk into an office location to apply for membership and pickup their new member cards. By launching a new mobile app, Zipcar’s new users can onboard simply by taking a photo of their driver’s license and receiving approval “within minutes” Griffith says.
Could joining a credit union be just as fast and simple? Credit unions likely want at least some face time to talk to members about products, services and benefits they offer. And they’ll likely want more than “just a few minutes” to approve a membership. But adapting new technology to improve enrollment process will ensure your member onboarding makes for an enjoyable transition.
Many credit unions are welcoming an influx of new members and they should stive to make an outstanding first impression on them within the first 90 days. Research has shown a consumer’s lifetime profitability and value is determined within this timeframe. Engage members within weeks to make sure the credit union understands their needs and leverages opportunities to cross-sell products.
Successful onboarding relies on a great consumer experience, which is a major way credit unions competing against banks can differentiate themselves. Hand-written thank you notes, personalized marketing, and warm calls are onboarding tools that credit unions use to impress members.