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Planning for the Future

March 22, 2018

From an early age, we are asked to start planning for the future. Remember back in elementary school when you were frequently asked what you want to be when you grow up? Well, it’s pretty likely that since then you haven’t stopped thinking about, wondering about, or planning for the future! From a financial perspective planning for the future is more reflective of contributing to your retirement, and ensuring that you’re saving properly for your first home or your kid’s college education. But from a marketing standpoint, it’s not quite as easy saving 15% every two weeks!

Marketing is an ever changing industry, and because of that a forward thinking mentality is even more essential than you may have realized. If you’re not constantly finding ways to stand out against the competition and better your products and services for your members, you’re going to realize that the industry and your members will move into the future without you.

One of the best ways to plan for the future from a marketing stand point is to fall back on customer trends that have repeated themselves over the years. You’re probably wondering why we just did a 180 from planning for the future to looking at the past, but stick with us, it all makes sense! Staying one step ahead of members based on previous consumer behavior is the best way to get them planning for their next financial move, and ensure that the move is done through your Credit Union.

For example, if you typically see that 1-2 years after a couple buys a house they’ll buy a new car, you can use that information to your advantage. Knowing this, you can plan to run marketing campaigns with messaging about auto loans to recently purchased home owners. By doing this, you’re getting the consumer thinking about their next big investment and they’re starting to plan ahead. Once they’re ready to actually start the process of buying a car and looking for an auto loan they’ll have already seen your ads for a few months and now your Credit Union is top of mind!

 

While consumer information is a great way to anticipate your customer’s next move, it isn’t the only way a company can plan for the future in terms of their marketing. Your marketing strategy should grow and evolve throughout the years, just like your current and potential clients will. Millennials have become a prominent part of the work force and are beginning to venture into larger more ‘adult’ purchases. Because of this, it’s important to make a marketing plan based on how your consumer will receive information not only today, but also in the future. Back to our example on home buyers. Assuming that the newest generation of home buyers are considered millennials, you need to plan a marketing strategy that caters to their lifestyle. Where you may have previously promoted mortgage loans using billboards or Television spots, it’s important to adapt based on your new targeted audience. Adults in 25-34 are getting their information from connected TV, digital ads, and social media, which should tell you all you need to know about where your ads should be. Planning ahead based on updated means of communication is the best way to make sure your credit union is evolving and you’re taking your current and potential customers with you. In order to plan for the future, you have to be willing to move into the future. Changing up your marketing strategy from your typical tried and true methods will give you the opportunity to reach new customers, and stay ahead of your competition as well!

While we may not be asking you what you want to be when you grow up, or if you’ve saved enough to put your kids through college, asking how your company is planning your marketing campaigns for the future is still important.  By tapping into previous consumer behavior and not being afraid to tailor your campaign based on industry trends and new generations, you’re giving your Credit Union a head start against the competition. After all, if you’re not moving forward, you’re simply standing in place.

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