Bring On-the-Go, Modern Technology to Your Credit Union Members

on-the-go payment optionIf you had to make a list of some of the most invaluable assets that credit unions have, loyalty is undoubtedly right at the top.

Loyalty is powerful when it comes to member relationships because it's something that isn't taken - it must be earned. Only by offering enjoyable, comprehensive, and personalized experiences that go above and beyond traditional banking will credit unions be able to turn potentially passive members into long-lasting advocates for years to come.

Recently, in an interview with CU Management, Preston Packer, Chief Marketing Officer of FLEX, shared, "What we have to do is take that [member] relationship and use it so that the member does feel that engagement and they do feel like, 'hey, my credit union knows me.'"

But at the same time, the lengths to which a credit union goes in order to provide those experiences need to evolve as member preferences do the same. What was considered the "latest and greatest" technique in 2013 likely won't clear the ever-changing bar of expectations in 2023, of course.

Case in point: mobility. Sometimes, members are more than willing to come into a branch to accomplish their goals. But in other situations, they don't have time and will want to take their favorite branch with them wherever they are. It's up to credit unions to provide that functionality in the most effective way possible and go through a digital transformation.

The Mobile Era is Upon Us

Part of the reason why mobility and on-the-go financial services have become so important has to do with the preferences of the next generation of credit union members.

Indeed, Preston Packer echoed these sentiments. "We're seeing now a mobile-only generation. Members don't want to go between the browser and an app... whatever features have historically been available in that Internet banking space, they expect those to be available in the mobile app."

When it came to the previous generation of members, you were talking about people who were introduced to the concept of the smartphone in their 20s and beyond. Although these powerful little devices are now a ubiquitous part of our lives, it's important to remember that Steve Jobs only introduced the iPhone in 2007 - just 15 years ago.

Yet at the same time, in that 15 years, there has been an entire generation of members who have grown up without knowing a world that lacked smartphones and mobile functionality at every turn. It's no longer a novelty - it's a foregone conclusion. It's a "need," not a "want" and credit unions everywhere need to be ready to rise to the digital transformation challenge.

While it is true that the concept of a mobile banking app is hardly new, credit unions are in a unique position to push things in a new direction. One recent study indicated that a significant number of financial industry consumers aren't actually that impressed with their current mobile banking apps. They use them, but mostly because they value mobility and there isn't a better alternative available. In other words, current solutions aren't a choice so much as they are a lack of options.

Credit unions can learn from other apps, however, and digitize the full, satisfying experience of being in a branch and allow people to take it with them on the go. With the right technology, a mobile credit union solution can anticipate a member's needs the way other apps do. It can offer highly personalized experiences. The same study mentioned above indicated that this last point is particularly crucial, as a lack of personalization was the cause of a big drop in consumer satisfaction for the industry in 2021.

It's All in the Relationship

When it comes to allowing members to take the experience they know and love with them wherever they go, credit unions need to lean heavily on something that their competitors cannot match: pre-existing relationships.

For years, the success of credit unions has been built upon intimate relationships with its members. It's something that other organizations operating in the Fintech space don't have. Therefore, when it comes to determining what functionality to digitize and how to best offer those mobile experiences people crave, your efforts need to start with the experience you already have.

Take what you know about your members and let that inform the decisions you're making during this digital transformation. Use that, along with other essential data like credit reports, to see what shape that transformation needs to take. Any digital solution needs to give people a chance to quickly do what they want, when they want, wherever they want so that they can get on with their day.

If you're able to do that, your credit union will accomplish so much more than just entering into the mobile banking world. It will make interacting with your credit union a daily and accepted part of your members' lives. It will create a situation where they don't even think about venturing elsewhere to perform banking needs because they already have a solution that they're drawn to and enthusiastic about. That's how your credit union can continue to differentiate itself from competitors and that's how it can create a new generation of loyal followers at the same time.

Providing an Exceptional Experience Anywhere at Any Time

Overall, credit unions need to go beyond simple (and traditional) banking services and embrace the next stage of the industry as a whole. Members have always wanted a personalized, convenient, and consistent experience from their credit unions - now, modern technology makes a digital transformation easier than ever.

Even as recently as a decade ago, giving members an opportunity to take their favorite branch with them wherever they went would have been unthinkable. Now, it's a reality and for many credit unions, it's one of the keys to creating deeper and more loyal relationships with members moving forward.

Learn how to create a bold new experience for your credit union members by downloading this Digital Account Services eGuide, offering tips pertaining to all the aforementioned advancements and more.

Digital Account Services eGuide

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