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How Credit Unions Should Market to Millennials

Millennials constitute the largest generational group mankind has seen since the Baby Boomers. This generation – also known as Generation Y – is made up of individuals born between 1982 and 2001.

This group is now between 13 and 32 years old and is a prime target for new business strategies, with a documented 84% of them currently seeking financial advice. The next time your credit union is targeting the financially conscious Gen Yer keep these three factors in mind.

Understand Their Values

Members trust credit unions over large banks because their money is circulated within a niche community – extremely appealing to Millennials because, typically, their generation enjoys feeling “authentically” connected and appeals to their sense of making a difference.

At least 61% of Gen Yers feel that it is their responsibility to make the world a better place, and it’s a credit union marketer’s job to take advantage of this insight by highlighting information for members that demonstrates that by being a member they are affecting their local community in a positive way.

Cater to Their Needs

When conceiving credit union marketing strategies targeted towards Millennials consider where they are in life.

According to Experian’s Fourth Annual State of Credit Study found that the average Millennial has an estimated average debt of $23,332 and the least number of bankcards, so offers of 0% APR for 12 months by opening a credit card account may not be as attractive as a new savings account offer that matches an increased interest rate through a three-year maturity.

Consider targeting younger Millennials who have not established a strong financial relationship with any competitor, but also are looking for basic services and guidance they can trust.

Keep It Simple

Many Millennials don’t or won’t take the time to figure out how your credit union differs from a large bank – or anything else in regard to finances – because they’re too busy balancing their three part-time jobs to make ends meet.

It’s important to keep the facts simple and make sure your communicating efficiently. This generation’s reactions to tactical strategies that worked on Generation X differ greatly. Millennials aren’t as likely to pay attention to your billboard or flyer because they are busy retweeting a competing organization for a chance to win a $100 gift card. That is why message integration in traditional and new social media channels is key.

Executing your strategy successfully means finding the best channel to communicate your message with the largest audience. More than half of the affluent consumers in this age group are likely to act on a financial service after using social media.

I.C. Federal Credit Union provides a great example of taking advantage of this concept in 2012. They created a series of short humorous videos explaining some of the most common financial questions that Millennials have. These simple videos drastically increased their membership across the board, but were most effective at bringing more Millennial members to the organization.

This is a complicated demographic to tackle and I want to hear your thoughts on Millennial marketing in the comments below.

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