Millennials have reached banking age en masse and today represent a large portion of potential members for credit unions. Competing against traditional banks for this segment’s business can be done but only with the right approach and intention—and it all starts with really knowing the audience.
Millennials choose what institutions they do business with in large part based upon who engages them the way they want to be engaged, where they want to be engaged and with what they want to be engaged. This, by and large, means online in some form.
Following are examples of what millennials want from a financial institution:
These features are seen by millennials as something basic that any credit union should have. Those that do not offer these online services—or that charge for them—will be quickly off the radar to a millennial audience.
This logical extension of online banking should come as no surprise to credit unions. But, beware—mobile banking does not simply mean access a credit union website on a smartphone, tablet or wearable. It means accessing a credit union mobile app on those devices. Via this app, members should be able to check balances, transfer funds, make deposits and pay bills at a minimum.
Where are millennials? Online. That can be on a website, on social media sites or on social messenger apps. Delivering customer service via all of these vehicles can be a superb way to show millennials that credit unions really understand them—and that is precisely what millennials want and need to know.
Despite what some people think, millennials are very open to mentorship. Not satisfied with the status quo, they thrive on asking questions and respond very positively to those who answer them with respect.
Credit unions can take a mentorship approach with this group in two ways. One is by hiring millennials and making the commitment to be an excellent employer. By doing this, institutions can cultivate ambassadors in the form of millennials.
Another way of doing this is by offering useful financial education targeted to millennials at their phases of life—in college, recently out of college, etc. These would be best delivered in an online forum and should be marketed on social media, via blogs, videos and other avenues where millennials will find them.
At the end of the day, millennials are looking for value. This should come in the form of actual services as well as added value such as education. Credit unions that offer this combination of benefits will find millennials coming their way.
No longer completely new, it appears that mobile banking is more than just here to stay—it is here to lead. As mobile banking adoption rates increase, the number of brick-and-mortar branches decrease and, yes, there is a direct correlation between these two events.
It comes as no surprise that millennials have eagerly adopted the mobile interface as a way of handling their financial transactions given their general comfort level with technology. However, they are not alone. Adoption rates among all segments, including boomers are on the rise.
The ability to have access to one’s financial resources and information in most any location at most any time powers this. It offers a level of control that consumers are seeking, especially in the midst of seemingly never-ending security breaches. Mobile banking essentially puts more power in the hands—literally—of consumers.
No longer are consumers forced to come to financial institutions on their terms and during their hours only to wait in long lines. Now consumers can bank when and where they want or need with no waiting—and via the platform of their choice as well. Tablets, smartphones and even wearables all offer this on-the-go functionality.
Mobile banking interfaces give financial institutions a new vehicle via which to establish and reinforce their brands 24/7. Being available to a member at any time of the day or night is perhaps one of the most powerful ways to build member loyalty and secure ongoing relationships.
In addition, via mobile banking portals, credits unions and banks can promote a plethora of additional products and services. A mobile banking site or app should essentially be viewed as a new Internet marketing vehicle with a big advantage over many others. This vehicle’s audience is an exceptionally targeted one—existing members who keep coming back.
The costs associated with mobile banking infrastructure coupled with the revenue potential relative to their physical branch cousins could end up being one of the biggest drivers of this revolution.
Today’s technology makes more possible with less overhead than ever before—for financial institution as well as for consumers. Credit unions in particular have the ability to take maximum advantage of this technology as they have generally been regarded as more consumer-friendly than large banks. Mobile banking is also seen as the consumer-friendly option so the marriage of mobile banking with a credit union is one that is well-positioned for long-term success.
The future is mobile. The evidence of this surrounds us.
Think about it, have you ever been in a public place and not seen at least one person’s eyes glued to their cell phone? Our culture has developed in such a way that these mobile devices are a requirement for living, and they have found their way into every aspect of our lives—including managing our finances.
We make it very easy for customers to connect to their personal account while on the go (making you yet another person that is glued to their phone!). There are many services that allow the experience to be pleasant and productive for the end user. Real-time updates, ease of use, and after hours access to your personal credit union account are all part of the appeal of going mobile and accessing your system remotely from your phone, tablet, or computer.
Keeping track of spending and account balances is easier than ever, and being able to manage them anytime and anyplace has become an expectation for credit union members. E-statements and SMS texts from your credit union can save you from getting hit with a late fee, or even save you a trip to your local branch.
You’ll also never forget to pay a bill with bill pay reminders. Scheduling automatic payments and managing existing payments is right at the your fingertips. Long gone are the days of those old paper statements and late fees; however, there is still quite a bit of concern about the security of Internet banking and mobile credit union management. You can rest assured that with CUDP’s cutting edge technology managing your member account is easy, safe and convenient. Mobile banking is here.
CUProdigy is in the unique position to help Credit Unions ‘Advance Beyond’ by providing a core processing platform that puts the member experience first. CUProdigy empowers credit unions with a comprehensive solution that is both robust and scalable.