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CU Snapshot

 September '18August '18
# of CUs5,6535,686
Total Assets
($ billions)
Total Savings
($ billions)
Net Cap.
Loans to Savings85.5%84.5%
Loan Delinq.0.7%0.7%

         Credit Union Indicators

Branding Is What You Do Every Day

Every interaction influences members' perception of your CU.

What you think about your brand doesn't matter—it's what your members think, says marketing guru Scott Stratten, president of Unmarketing.

Branding is not your logo, he explains. Branding is what you do every day.

"You're branding constantly," says Stratten, who spoke at the CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council Conference. That includes every interaction with members in the branch, conversations at community events—even fielding complaints. "There is never a neutral interaction with your credit union. It is either up or down."

That's why front-line employees are incredibly important to your brand. Let them know "you're the brand" and that they make a huge difference to the success of the credit union.

Hire people who care. "You can teach process and procedure. You can't teach giving a damn," Stratten says. "The best marketing we can do is hire well."

Furthermore, credit union leaders should view complaints as opportunities. "The worst type of complaint is the one you do not hear," Stratten says.

You need to hear complaints so you can respond. "When people complain online, the No. 1 thing they're looking for is validation. They want to feel heard."

Marketing today happens in real time, Stratten adds. The speed at which you reply to a problem is as important as the response itself.

Your brand is at stake with every interaction. The moral, Stratten says, is remembering the three pillars to good business: authenticity, transparency, and immediacy.

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