3 Ways Credit Unions Can Connect With Millennials

By Katherine Regnier - Apr 2, 2019

Coconut Software was fortunate enough to attend and sponsor the 2019 CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council Conference which took place in Las Vegas. I can tell you it was a very impressive event and the committee that organized it deserves a huge round of applause and a thank you.

As CEO, I really wanted to attend because I wanted to get out from behind my desk and better understand what credit unions care about, what pains are they trying to solve, how do we fit in and how can we help.

What stood out to me was the theme around “How do we connect with Millennials?” If you are not familiar with why this is important, it is because in the near future they are going to begin inheriting a ton of wealth, and the credit unions are not convinced that they are going to stay banking with them.

The threat here are digital banks who provide an effortless real-time engagement. And so the song – “Go on take the money and run” seems to be in the back of people’s minds.

So with that, and being a Millennial myself, there are a few points that I think will help all of us elevate our thinking.

Make It Ridiculously Easy to Do Business With You

One thing we all know for sure is that everyone these days is constantly on their phones, and millennials even more than most. How do you place yourself in front of them, without forcing them to go here or go there, including your website? You must provide a native mobile experience.

A great example of this is something that we offer with our solution Coconut Software. When a member has an appointment, Coconut Software will automatically text them to say, “When you arrive please text “1” to let us know you’re here.” Simple. Then the advisor is alerted and can make their way to the front to greet the member.

Perhaps you might be thinking – “Well we offer mobile mortgage specialists, so that is already making it ridiculously easy to do business with us.” This could be true, but I’m curious how effortless is it to get that meeting with one of those specialists in the first place?

Make It an Experience Not a Transaction

One credit union I spoke with at the convention has embraced the Capital One Café model and created a modern conversation area, and included a play center for any members that have children so they can focus on the conversation. And I bet they are offering sparkling or flat water as well. The small things go a long way.

Relate to Them With Micro Content

I believe it is fair to say we are digesting content in shot like doses and attention spans are low. We have Instagram, Snapchat, Buzzfeed the list goes on. Where are they getting their information?  How can you start to build trust with them? Unfortunately, they don’t really look up your website on a daily basis.

So, the real point here is how you can provide them with quick stories about other members and what they accomplished with your guidance. A quick photo that can be pushed to Instagram – “Look at Becky’s new car. She applied for and purchased her new ride on the same day with a killer interest rate.”

Society might carve out millennials, Gen x or Gen y as being different, but really, they only want to be communicated with differently, enjoy their surroundings more and for you to be accessible in real-time. This is a huge step in the right direction.

Overall this continues to inspire our team at Coconut Software to continue developing a truly engaging member solution that can provide you with measurable insights on performance and connecting members with advisors.