Credit union marketing automation is a beneficial strategy for all credit unions regardless of size. Having it in place is no longer reserved for the larger credit unions, so whether you have one branch or ten, you can and should use automation for your marketing.
Despite the ideas surrounding marketing automation, you can get started without the overwhelm and stress about processes, software, and budgets that often come with implementing new marketing strategies for your credit union.
What is Credit Union Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation is essentially the process of using systems to trigger marketing activities based on a user’s behavior or characteristics. This automatically takes away your need to manually review the user data to decide what should happen.
By saving time on your end and consistently providing a better user experience with personalized content processes, you can improve your marketing return on investment.
Why Marketing Automation Isn’t Reserved For Large Credit Unions
While marketing automation might have once been reserved for large credit unions with large budgets and marketing support, that’s no longer the case. At this point, it’s too important for any credit union not to have in place.
Marketing automation allows you to gain an understanding of what to advertise, who to advertise to, and when to do it, which are the three marketing basics you need to achieve for successful campaigns.
Besides the numerous benefits of marketing automation for credit unions in improving efficiency, ROI and results tracking, there are many options out there available at low cost. Credit unions can even start with HubSpot’s free CRM, and could add a base marketing plan to that to start incorporating some of the functionality of the full-featured platform.
The Benefits of Marketing Automation
When you implement marketing automation, your credit union can experience many benefits in various parts of your business ranging from how you welcome new members to how you market your product offerings. The impact of these benefits can feel even more significant for smaller credit unions.
Improved New Member Onboarding
Marketing automation allows you to put a sequence of steps in place for new members who join the credit union. This might include a series of welcome emails with information about the credit union, resources, and how to reach out to the staff for support.
You can even customize your onboarding sequence based on the first service they sign up for. Meaning someone who gets a mortgage with you might receive different emails than someone who signs up for their first checking account after graduating from high school.
This personalized and automatic experience can help your credit union member feel welcome and comfortable, which builds trust and makes them more likely to want to enroll in additional products and services down the road.
Behavior-Based Email Marketing
Similar to the new member onboarding process, you can implement behavior-based email marketing as part of your marketing automation system.
Based on how your members interact with the credit union products and services, you can send out specific personalized emails that fit their behavior. This is more effective than sending out generic content to everyone, which results in members receiving information that isn’t relevant or valuable and can lead to email fatigue, which reduces open rates.
While campaign data is valuable, it can be time-consuming to analyze. That’s why having a marketing automation tool that can analyze your data is essential. This is especially important for you as a smaller credit union since you likely have less marketing support than larger credit unions.
Any automation you have in place can save you time and help to extend your resources significantly.
Achieve Product Sales Goals
You have sales goals for your loans, credit cards, checking accounts, and other products. Your marketing automation can help you achieve them. With personalized behavior-based email sequences, your ideal customer can receive email content that places them in a sales funnel. Once in the sales funnel, there’s a higher likelihood that a conversion will occur.
Also, the system can trigger reminders if processes are started but not completed, such as leaving an auto loan application without submitting it. These automatic reminders can help to improve your conversion rates as well.
Similarly, you can use automation to promote special offers to the segment of your member population that is most likely to be interested based on their behavior.
How To Get Started With Credit Union Marketing Automation
When getting started with marketing automation as a small credit union, you can start with simple processes and build from there. Here are some ideas to get the ball rolling.
Segment Your Email List
As you build your email list, you will find that you have members who fall into various categories and have any number of needs. Instead of sending the same content to every member, you can segment your audience and send personalized emails to each group to fit their needs.
Collect Email Addresses
Since your email list is where much of your marketing automation will take place, you want to have a strategy to collect email addresses. You can gather addresses in many ways, including:
- Collecting email addresses from product applications
- Collecting email address from contact forms
- Collecting email addresses from requests to speak to a banker
- Creating free resources that require an email address to access
- Creating a free tool/quiz/poll that requires an email address to access the results
It’s okay to get creative with ways you can provide value to your audience while also getting their email addresses so you can add them to your marketing automation system.
Send Email Welcome Series
As mentioned above, providing a better series of emails to onboard new members is a benefit of using marketing automation. It is also a great way to get started as a small credit union.
You want to take this opportunity to connect with your members and nurture the new relationship by introducing them to the credit union, sharing how you can help them to achieve their financial goals, and even going a step further to offer to set up a new member phone call for additional support.
Developing Marketing Automation Strategies
Marketing automation for small credit unions isn’t a one size fits all method.
To be successful, you want to have a strategy in place that works to help you achieve your specific goals. Not only do you need the right tools and software in place to bring the automation to life, but you also need the right content and content direction to lead your members to the most appropriate place in your marketing funnel.
You want to monitor your results, adjust your approach to get further to your goal, and once you achieve it, move forward to your next campaign goal using marketing automation.