Posts Tagged ‘banking’

Announcing the innovative new eSwitchKit!

May 22, 2013

EverythingCU.com is thrilled to announce an innovative new breakthrough in making it easy for your new members to switch their previous accounts over to your CU! Our new eSwitchKit makes switching incredibly easy via secure email and organized with a personalized online checklist that both your member and your credit union can monitor for real-time status updates.

Making the switch to your credit union has never been easier with our new eSwitchKit!

See for yourself how easy and convenient it is by trying out the Demo!

The eSwitchKit makes it easy for your member (or your MSRs to help your members) switch their previous accounts over to your credit union. The member’s information only needs to be entered one time, and the correct information is then sent to each vendor involved in the process, including Employer for Direct Deposit, previous Financial Institution for close account instructions, and for every ACH/Automatic Payment vendor as well as any vendors making automatic withdrawals via Debit Card.

The member is in control every step of the way, being able to decide which of these organizations are to receive account numbers, which organizations are to receive secure email communications, and which organizations are to receive printed and mailed letters.

  • The most innovative switch kit in the industry brings the member an active, real time checklist with email alerts keeping the process top of mind and organized
  • The member and credit union can access a Switching Checklist providing an up-to-the-second look at each step of the switch
  • Member is alerted via email whenever a vendor responds with switching updates
  • Full admin controls enables you to help your members through any sticking points
  • SSAE 16 compliance and industry-standard 128-bit encryption
  • Vendors can send messages back to the member in regards to switch status and details
  • The eSwitchKit is the latest innovation from the same company that brought you the original Online Switch Kit in 2004 and Premium Online Switch Kit in 2011. More than 100 CUs nationwide employ these Switch Kits that have helped more than 23,000 members switch to their credit union

If you are currently using the Original or Premium Switch Kit and would like to upgrade, please contact me for your prorated upgrade pricing; via email: morriss@everythingcu.com or call me direct at 413-535-0621. For more information about the eSwitchKit or to place an order, visit the eSwitchKit Info/Sales page.

Initial feedback has been positive; feel free to let us know your thoughts and comments about this new concept in helping members make the switch to your CU!

Happy switching!

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It doesn’t take an Act of Congress…

October 11, 2011

We here at EverythingCU are thrilled that there is renewed, extra interest in helping more and more people leave their megaBanks (like BofA), and join their local credit union. I just ran across this article on the Bold Progressives web site, where they are calling for signatures to help pass legislation:

Bold Progressives: Petition Congress to make it easier to switch

Of course, if you already have EverythingCU.com’s online switch kit, you know that it doesn’t take an Act of Congress to make it easier to switch.

If you don’t already have it, find out what 111 other credit unions have discovered– you can make it easier to gain new members by making it easier for them to make the switch….. without waiting for the gridlock of Washington to untangle. (That might be a very long wait… don’t hold your breath!)

CUs, Social Media, and Governance

December 1, 2010

Based on the conversation exploding on EverythingCU.com over the past two days on Credit Unions and the ROI of Social Media, I created and edited this opinion piece down to 10 minutes to fit it onto YouTube. I talk about branding, marketing, social media, credit unions, ROI, the future of credit unions, their Boards of Directors, and their members, and my mom. I think what we currently think of as Social Media (aka Online Community Engagement) has the potential to transform it all. What do you think?

Transcript:

Hi, I’m Morriss Partee, Chief Experience Officer of EverythingCU, and I’d like to make this quick little video blog on a topic that is near and dear to my heart, and that is credit unions and social media. It’s been an amazing thrill to see the topic of credit union’s use of Social Media and its ROI really blossom on EverythingCU in the past couple of days. I’ve watched with great interest as many opinions have been stated very forcefully from both sides. There are a lot of good arguments, both for and against, credit unions using social media.

Online communication is changing everything

Social media, and if we use the term to mean online community interaction, is, without question, transforming the way that people across the United States, and even across the world, are interacting with each other, and interacting with the world [around them]. So this social media phenomenon and revolution has affected or will affect virtually every department of credit union operations. It’s clear there are marketing implications and operational implications. But I’d like to talk about one are which I think in the long run, has the largest potential to truly improve credit union business and the way members interact with and view their credit union.

A Little Background

One of the big sea-changes in the way that credit unions operate with their members is when credit unions were deregulated from standard fields of membership in 1998. And since that time, credit union after credit union after credit union has gone to community charter, or a charter much broader than their original one.

Hi mom!

As example, my mother is a member of UMassFive College Federal Credit Union. Whenever I’ve had the pleasure of working on marketing campaigns for that credit union, I often think of my mother as the ideal target market. And every now and then, I’ll ask her a question about the credit union. “How do you feel about this? Why do you do business with the credit union? What do you like about it? What don’t you like about it?” And the thing that really strikes me is that because my mother is a retired professor from UMass, she feels like UMass Federal Credit Union is HER credit union. She knows the people who run it, she knows that the people who are members are colleagues of hers, that are affiliated with UMass in one way or another. Of course, she’s very proud of UMass. So anyway, that’s the world in which credit unions have traditionally operated. But for any credit union that is now far more broader than an original employee group, or their employer has changed, merged, been outsourced overseas, their original SEG has shut down, gone out of business, merged, diversified, whatever the story is, those credit unions need a new reason for being. Something that is fundamental, that makes you feel like “this is MY credit union.” Well, what do credit unions talk about in terms of the difference [between themselves and banks]? The difference is in their governance, their form of governance. Credit unions are not-for-profit cooperatives. This is supposed to be MY credit union.

MY credit union? Really?

Well, what does that mean, “MY credit union”? Does that mean I can withdraw a million dollars? Well, no, of course not, it doesn’t mean that. Well, then what does “MY credit union” really mean? How can we replicate, how can we make people, feel, understand what “MY credit union” means? We are the members, right? We are the member-owners. That’s the fundamental thing we’ve got going here.

So what does it really mean to be a member-owner? Well, right now, because of previous technological or operational limitations, membership really has only meant that I vote for a Board of Directors once a year. And I’m only voting for 3 out of 9 or so [board] members each year. And unless I’m really well-tied into the community or connected to the community, I have no idea who these people are. I might get one paragraph and a little, tiny one-inch photograph of what the person looks like, and they all kind of say the same thing about how they’re going to make sure the credit union is operated in the best interest of its members. Great. Well, it doesn’t help me choose, it doesn’t help me understand [who these people are]. I feel relatively powerless, and it doesn’t make me feel much like it’s mine–that I get to vote on… I don’t know who.

Ginny Brady, Revolutionary

That’s why I was so intrigued when Ginny Brady, in Plattsburgh, New York, started blogging with her members. She truly wanted to interact with her members to say “here’s what we are weighing as the board, here are the issues we’re wrestling with, we have to make tough choices, we have to balance different facets of financial soundness, with doing the right thing for our members, with maintaining the institution’s integrity.” For several years, she was regularly blogging, saying “here’s what the board’s doing, here’s what we’re up to, here’s our annual meeting, come out to it, we’d love to talk to you, we’d love to get your input.”

She actually stopped blogging after a couple of years. I think it’s simply because she was way too far ahead of her time, and perhaps people in the Plattsburgh region weren’t really ready for a local credit union to blog, and to understand what that meant, and to know how to find it, and know how to interact, or to want to interact. But I still feel like, as people now come online in different ways, Facebook, Twitter, email , blogging, what have you, I feel that there are new opportunties for credit unions to really make a difference with their governance.

Online input on CU governance!

What if there were online polling? What if you polled the membership regularly and said “how many of you prefer X over Y?” or “how many people feel it’s important that we offer this checking account?” or “we’re planning to build a new branch.” I still feel like there’s plenty of opportunity to really engage members, via online channels, via Facebook, via SurveyMonkey, or any other means, to say “WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE? What is it that would make the credit union better for you? What do you like about us and what we’re doing now? What do you hate about the credit union now?” And we can do these things in real time. You could even have a board meeting where you pose a question to the membership at the beginning of the meeting, and you have a decent number of responses by the end of the meeting. So if members have this voice now, and  they are actually engaged with the board of directors, and not even directly, but just in an anonymous way, that’s going to make people feel like, “yeah, that’s MY credit union. I have input to the credit union. The credit union listens to me for feedback. The credit union is interested in what I have to say. That’s MY credit union. I’m not going to leave MY credit union. I’m not going to go down the street because a rate is a quarter-point higher or lower, because it’s not MY credit union.”

So anyway, that’s just my thoughts, rambling from here in Western Massachusetts on a dark and stormy, rainy December night. I would love to hear your feedback on whether this aspect of inviting membership into governance has significant potential to truly revolutionize how credit unions market with and do business with their members.

What’s your take?

Recent Watershed Developments: Twitter Banking

October 5, 2009

I haven’t written before about what twitter banking would look like because of the poor adoption rate of SMS/text banking. But it’s a logical evolution. Vantage CU in St. Louis, MO, is the first to launch twitter banking, and they’ve called it TweetMyMoney. EverythingCU member Eric Acree, EVP, has led this charge for Vantage, while Technovation guru Cam Minges was largely responsible for implementation and deployment. Good for them. Innovation AND differentiation at it’s finest. Huge props.

For more coverage:
Jeffry Pilcher wrote it up at The Financial Brand
Tim McAlpine wrote about it at Currency Marketing

The other recent watershed development: Augmented RealityFinovate NYC 2009

Offering banking text messag… errr, nevermind.

October 19, 2007

In July, I wrote about what I would like to have as banking or credit union consumer… the ability to text message my bank or credit union with “balance” and get my current account balance sent back to my cell phone. I figured it might be one or two years before my credit union offered it. One executive of a 55,000 member credit union said he doesn’t see a need for it, his members are not asking for it. (Note to CU executive: How are you not seeing the MILLIONS of cell phones used by EVERYONE around you? Who doesn’t have a cell phone at this point?)

But now I realize that banks and credit unions are perfectly fine not offering it. Because the new generation of Personal Financial Management (PFM) sites (Wesabe, Mint, Geezeo) will do the job nicely on your credit union or bank account, bypassing the financial institution entirely. So credit unions and banks, sit back, relax, and let the new generation do it for you. No problem. I’ve already signed up on Geezeo, and I may check out Wesabe and Mint just to find out the differences between these online PFMs. It took me all of five minutes to sign up on Geezeo and verify my cell phone for text messaging balances, and I never had to leave my home. Future blog post: Why PFMs will soon rule the world. (Quicken and MS Money are now officially 15-minutes ago.)

And if you don’t think that online PFMs are going to take off and skyrocket, that’s probably what you thought about P2P lending… who would ever do that? Just look at Prosper’s growth rate… at the current rate, in one year, Prosper’s membership will make them larger than the third largest CU in the nation. And that’s in only their first 2.5 years of existence.