By Rob Comfort, President, CUNA Brokerage Services, Inc.
Wealth management services may not be the first thing that comes to mind when people think credit unions, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be a high priority for credit unions this year. As we start 2023, credit unions will focus on adding more members and enhancing the digital experience. However, it’s equally important for credit unions to leverage investment services to provide a well-rounded member experience.
The State of Wealth Management and Credit Unions
Roughly 20% of all credit unions in the country have financial advisors, yet only about 2% of credit union members use their credit union for financial advice.
Additionally, research and consulting firm Kehrer Bielan found over 50% of credit union members would prefer to receive financial advice from their credit union.
So, why are so few members taking advantage of their credit union’s wealth management services? It comes down to a lack of awareness, which indicates credit unions may not be marketing these services as well as they could be.
Why Should Credit Unions Prioritize Marketing Their Wealth Management Services?
The short answer here is credit unions are leaving meaningful revenue on the table. Credit unions that have financial professionals are under leveraging the opportunities this service offers and are losing out on non-interest fee income.
Credit unions are known for helping people of all income levels, which allows financial professionals to grow their business faster by not having to worry about minimum investments that are common practice at big banks.
In addition, members with an investment relationship with the credit union bring in more deposits and loans. Those relationships foster a deeper sense of trust, which creates loyal members who view their local credit union as a one-stop shop for all their financial needs.
And, perhaps most importantly, credit unions that promote their wealth management services are better fulfilling their mission – helping people achieve a brighter financial future.
How Credit Unions Can Market Their Wealth Management Services
Here are three marketing strategies credit unions can implement this year to expand awareness of their investment services.
Train and Educate Your Staff
Educating your staff on your credit union’s investment services will help them understand the service, how it ties into the bigger picture of the business and how it meets the mission of serving members. Training employees to ask members about critical investment areas such as retirement, college planning or investing in financial assets gives them the tools to refer members to professionals.
In today’s digital world, marketing your credit union’s wealth management services online should be a high priority. Credit unions can create campaigns to advertise their financial professionals on their website, through email campaigns and on social media. These marketing efforts can be as simple as a pop-up banner on a website, or an email that’s sent out to all members.
Create a Cross-Selling Culture
Although it sometimes gets a bad rap, creating a cross-selling culture in your credit union can help members meet their critical needs. Instead of reacting to their members, credit unions that cross-sell wealth managements services can be more proactive in serving their members. Creating a cross-selling culture goes hand in hand with educating and training staff members on wealth management services.
Credit unions can better leverage the opportunity investment services provide in 2023 by making changes to their culture and investing in this business opportunity. By integrating this service into their core business, credit unions could create a variety of new revenue streams that allow them to grow, but more importantly, meet their member’s critical financial needs while deepening relationships.
To learn more about how financial professionals can help expand credit union, read How Financial Advisors Can Make Their Mark at a Credit Union.