21st June 2024

Better business. Better community

Business Industry and Financial

Retain loyal members: 5 strategies

Your members have more options than ever when it comes to choosing a credit union or other financial service provider. And because loyal members are valuable, losing them can be costly.

People who are loyal are more likely to recommend their financial institution to others and to spend more, and are less likely to switch to a competitor.

To build and nurture loyalty with today’s consumers, you need to give them more in exchange. Here are five ways credit unions can provide what’s needed to retain loyal members:

1. Timing is everything

Well-timed, relevant messages improve the overall experience, encouraging loyalty. This will take data, technology, investment, and work, but your members will thank you for it.

2. Personalization wins

Addressing members by name is a good start, but it’s not nearly enough. Instead, when a credit union can tailor offers to member preferences, they increase the likelihood of retaining them.

3. Loyalty should have benefits

People expect positive and rewarding experiences. According to Mintel, 77% of people expect to be rewarded for their loyalty.

However, it’s not just about physical rewards. It should also be about fostering a relationship and building trust with ongoing, relevant communication.

4. Every generation matters

Recent research from Vericast reveals:

  • Generation Z prioritizes advice and resources about saving and budgeting.
  • Millennials focus on advice and resources about saving and raising/understanding their credit scores.
  • Generation X prioritizes advice and resources about budgeting and saving strategies.

Understanding the unique needs and preferences of each generation is key to creating customized resources and education programs to cater to each generation’s unique financial goals and preferences.

5. Innovation wins hearts

Future-oriented credit unions invest in digital technology to enhance the member experience and provide convenient, accessible services. Technology also enables the collection and analysis of large amounts of data, leading to more personalized and targeted marketing campaigns.

However, the most successful loyalty programs balance technology with human interaction. This approach ensures that members receive a seamless and personalized experience that meets their needs and preferences.

Ultimately, investing in both technology and people is essential for building loyalty and enhancing the overall experience.

To remain competitive and retain loyalty, credit unions need to innovate and adapt to changing member demands and preferences. By implementing these five strategies, you can differentiate yourself from competitors and build long-term loyalty.

CHARLIE ARCELLA is vice president, financial services partnerships, at Vericast, a CUNA Strategic Services alliance provider.