DREAM Big Contest!

After last week’s interview with Kirk Drake, CEO of Ongoing Operations I bought a copy of his new book, CU 2.0: A Guide for Credit Unions Competing in the Digital Age. We are truly fortunate to have this book in our industry. How often do you see a “Credit Union” book on amazon.com?

We give it two-thumbs up, a gold star, the credit union Pulitzer prize.

In the beginning of the book Kirk makes a very valid point.  in 2008, just 9 years ago, we were handed the financial world on a silver platter. Massive bank failures, mortgage loan foreclosures, customers struggling to get credit they needed while the banks raised fees. And yet credit unions market share soared from 7% to 8%. We can probably contribute some of that to the “Bank Transfer Day” Movement led by a non-credit union member in response to her frustrating relationship with B of A. We treated it as a one and done instead of seeing it as the re-charge of the credit union movement.

Why did that happen? Because we continue to operate in the old model which is ripe with over compliance and risk aversion. Credit unions are not known for being innovators. At our very best we are fast-followers. My favorite chapter is “Death by a Thousand Cuts” where Kirk describes the Finctech world in a way that I actually kind of understand Bitcoin now. We are in the business of moving money and yet these Fintech players like PayPal, Apply Pay, Venmo, even Starbucks are “using” our member’s money with little or no regulation to provide the level of service they have come to expect. Right now, in the click of a button or a swipe of my phone I can pay for something or buy something. In the meantime many credit unions still require a “wet signature” on a loan application.

We asked Kirk if we could offer 5 copies of his new book to the credit unions that have done some amazing things in this digital age. To help inspire others. Of course he agreed and so each week we are going to take a page from his book, so to speak and ask credit unions to submit their successes in the areas Kirk calls DREAM: The keys to building a better digital experience for your member:

D – Differentiate

R – Recreate and Reinforce

E – Educate and Excite

A – Automate

M – Motivate

In the book Kirk promises that “DREAM will give you digestible ways to venture into social media, content marketing and data analytics.” And by making it a contest we can focus on one component each week and be able to share how a credit union has accomplished it, for the benefit of other credit unions.

So let’s begin!

The “D” in Dream stands for differentiate. All credit unions began with a very clear differentiator. If you think about the stories of 6 teachers pooling $5.00 each and depositing it in a cigar box in a desk drawer…that’s different than leaving it in a bank. And those teachers were the marketers through their own social media – the teacher’s lounge. They had no competition and would build the credit union to serve the unique needs of those teachers. Today we do not look that much different from a bank. We tend to target the same person, middle-market, credit driven. In other words we are too focused on pushing loans and not focused enough on mining data to see who truly is in the market for a loan.

To differentiate you need another D – DATA! According to CU 2.0 there are six types of data you should pull:

  1. Inbound Data (Website and Search Data)
  2. Transactions and Triggers Data
  3. Profitable Data
  4. Design Data
  5. Wallet Share and Competitive Data
  6. Execution Data

So if your credit union has used data to clearly define a target audience, created a must-have product, service or experience around that audience and had good results, we want to hear about it. Not only will you be the “winner’ of a fresh copy of CU 2.0 – hot off the press – you get bragging rights, the satisfaction knowing that you are helping other credit unions AND, wait for it….$200 off the registration fee for the 2018 NACUSO Network Conference at the Disneyland Hotel on April 16th – 19th where you get to meet the author! Kirk is one of our esteemed judges for our Shark Tank like competition The Next Big Idea. Who knows, maybe you can win that too?

Submit your story to kdrake@ongoingoperations.com by July 31st. Good luck!