how to get clients as a credit union

How To Get Clients as a Credit Union: It’s Not as Hard As You Think

The credit union and banking industry has always been competitive, but today, consumers can find credit unions online nationwide, not just in their local area. It’s easier than ever for people to become members. To compete for the business against other financial institutions, you must use the right strategies to learn how to get clients as a credit union.

The trick is to showcase yourself as an authority in the industry. You want to show your audience that you are the right solution to their banking needs. You want to show why your credit union is the one where they should trust their money and where they should become a member.

How to Get Clients as a Credit Union

There are many ways to get a larger customer base for credit unions, but it begins with narrowing your audience. No two credit unions have the same product offerings. The key is understanding your target market and their banking needs to attract potential new members.

Understanding what your audience needs will help you build your brand. Focusing on your strengths, you can show your authority compared to other credit unions and narrow your content strategy to find the ideal clients looking for a new account.

Use the following ten steps to learn how to get clients as a credit union.

Define Your Target Market

To have a successful credit union, you must not waste time marketing to just any audience. Instead, you must focus your marketing strategies on the demographics you serve. Don’t waste time, money, or energy marketing to people who won’t benefit from your credit union’s brand.

For example, if your credit union members are all a part of the military, it doesn’t make sense to target new members who aren’t in the military.

The key is to know where your clients spend time, what types of advertisements they respond to, and how they prefer to communicate to grow your financial brand while narrowing your audience as much as possible to get new leads.

Build Your Brand and Presence

Your potential customers want to get to know you before they talk to you, so it’s your job to show you are a confident and trustworthy character by providing a relatable digital platform to get future business.

Most consumers and owners of small businesses do their due diligence and look online before deciding which potential financial institutions to call to see if they are a good fit. To get new account holders, you must use digital marketing, building a brand image that future members can identify with and remember when they need a credit union.

To offer bank or credit union services to a large audience, you must build your brand with the following:

  • Have a professional credit union website with useful information about your products and services
  • Be present and active on the social media platforms your audience uses
  • Use proper SEO tactics to increase social media and website traffic

Any marketing materials you create should have the same brand presence. This allows your audience to get familiar with you and to be able to recognize you whether they find your website, social media accounts, or a flyer in the mail.

Develop a Content Strategy

A content marketing strategy is the key to attracting prospective members and sets you apart from others in the industry. As we said earlier, most people use the internet to research before contacting a new credit union. If they can’t find you online, it’s as if you don’t exist, whether you are an existing or new credit union, and it will be hard to get new clients.

However, this doesn’t mean slapping together a website or making sporadic social media posts, as it won’t help you find more members.

You need a strategy or a method to your madness. Your content marketing campaigns should have a strategy with relevant topics so you become the thought leader in the industry and show your audience the benefits you offer. A few ideas to include it in are:

  • Create a blog – An up-to-date blog with relevant content helps potential members find you. If your blog post contains relevant and helpful content that provides financial education for future members, it may appear on the first page of the search engines because it provides positive experiences for your audience.
  • Consider videos or podcasts – Consider implementing videos or podcasts into your content marketing strategy about topics that may be easier to hear than read. Some people respond better to these materials than written blog posts, mainly to save time while giving you another avenue to get more clients.
  • Network – Networking for banks and credit unions means talking to anyone who comes into contact with individuals or owners of small or medium-sized businesses who could use your services. Connect with other professionals online on LinkedIn or Facebook and individuals on Instagram. Also, attend networking events to find potential members who need help with consumer or business banking products and services.
how to get clients as a credit union

Engage With Your Target Audience

Many credit unions set up a social media page but don’t give it the attention it needs. They don’t engage with their followers to get new clients. To be a successful credit union, you want to show that you are the expert your audience needs, whether they are an individual or small business owner.

One of the best client engagement tips to get more members is to give your social media pages a personal touch by showing behind-the-scenes footage or pictures of you getting involved with the community. Show your audience you have real employees running the financial institution who care about their clients and the community, too.

It’s also important to interact with your audience. Most platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram make responding to comments or direct messages easy. This is another way to get personal with your audience and let them know you are responsive.

This is important for most people when choosing a credit union because they want someone they know they can communicate with easily and who will be easy to work with for their banking services.

Leverage Referrals

Referrals are one of the best ways to find future clients. You can get a successful referral from satisfied existing customers using referral bonuses, other business owners, word-of-mouth, and social media. Never be afraid to ask for referrals.

  • From existing members – If you have high levels of customer satisfaction, those members are likely to refer you to other business owners or individuals. Create incentives for your existing members to provide referrals to their friends and family for your services, such as a referral bonus, and watch your client referrals increase.
  • Business owners – Let business owners in the community know of your services. Even if they don’t use your services, other professionals may need a credit union, and they can refer you, or you can trade referrals to increase your member list.
  • Social media – Anyone can share social media posts, which will spread the word about your services without you trying. Create meaningful posts that people want to share, whether an existing member or someone who follows you, and you’ll get in front of a much larger audience without much effort and help you find new members.

Network and Establish Relationships

The key to growing your client base is constantly networking. You can network online and in person if you attend networking events. In both areas, you want to create and maintain relationships. The key is knowing your audience’s contact expectations and using that to your advantage to offer customers what they want.

Here are a few ways to reach more leads:

  • Cold calling – Even today, cold calling is a popular way to find potential new customers. If picking up the phone and making a cold call isn’t something you enjoy, focus your efforts on search engine optimization so your blog posts and other content marketing pieces reach the right individuals and business owners.
  • Email marketing – Emails are the equivalent of cold outreach, but electronically. But just like you need a well-thought-out script for phone calls, your email marketing campaigns must be strong to ensure your audience opens and engages with your emails. Just sending emails isn’t enough; without a strategy, they’ll likely end up in spam.
  • Follow-up – Relationships aren’t built on one phone call or email. After the first contact with a potential new member, you must keep up the relationship by following up. This doesn’t mean following up and asking for the sale. Instead, continue providing value to your leads so you become a natural choice, and they possibly choose you over other banks or credit unions.

Utilize Targeted Advertising

The internet and social media make it easy to target your advertisements. It’s different from the old days, when you would create an ad to throw on the radio or TV and hope it eventually reached the ideal client. With online advertising, such as Facebook or Google ads, you can target the right demographics so only the people most interested in your services will see the advertisements, helping you increase your member acquisition.

You can also watch the analytics to see how your advertisements do, making changes to ensure the right audience sees your message.

Collaborate With Strategic Partners

Become the leader in a community so you become the ‘go-to’ financial institution that provides what members need. For example, create partnerships with other local businesses you can collaborate with and help each other market.

The key is to build authority to show your audience you are one of the best credit unions in the industry that will provide them with what they need.

Speak at Seminars and Industry Conferences

Take advantage of opportunities to speak at events and speaking opportunities to get in front of people within your demographic. Use the opportunity to show the value of what you offer without selling. Provide sneak peeks of your services while providing valuable tips to your audience. You can also use this strategy online and offer a webinar to reach a larger audience.

Be Active in the Community

Community involvement is one of the best ways to show that you care about the people around you and that you aren’t just in business to make money. Attend as many local events as possible, offering free services, providing advice, getting your hands dirty, helping the community with a common problem or concern, and showing that you have common interests.

You can use the opportunities to volunteer your time or even offer free consultations to build relationships within the community. This works best when you join groups and get active in your community.

how credit unions get clients


How Do Credit Unions Prospect New Members?

Credit unions have many ways to find potential members, including email or content marketing, social media campaigns, and asking for referrals. The key to finding new members is understanding your audience and who fits your target market best.

What Type of Feedback Should Credit Unions Seek From Members?

Ask current members what they think of your process, banking products, and loan options. Ask specific questions about their customer journey or about specific products, such as checking or savings accounts. Take the information they offer and use it to perfect your offerings. This will get you new business and help increase customer loyalty.

What Are the Most Effective Ways to Market a Credit Union’s Services?

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all way to market a credit union’s services. The proper method depends on the target audience. However, a strong credit union marketing strategy includes a solid content strategy and email and social media marketing.

What Platforms Should Credit Unions Use to Reach Potential Members?

Most credit unions find members on LinkedIn and Facebook groups, but you can also find them on Instagram and Facebook. Focusing on paid advertising like Google Ads is also important to reach the right audience. The key is to narrow your niche and figure out where your target audience spends their time.

Final Thoughts

Knowing how to get clients as a credit union is important as the industry grows. The stronger your marketing tactics become, the easier it is to be the authoritative figure in the industry. The key is setting yourself apart from the others and showing value to your new clients to help them choose your banking products over other banking opportunities.