Why Data Matters

Can you prove that marketing is essential to your Credit Union?

Many argue that marketing creates new relationships, upholds existing ones, and develops this “branding” thing everyone is talking about. Although many claim to know how important marketing is, it often has a generic feel to it. Let me elaborate.

How many times have you received marketing material that made zero impact on you? It’s safe to say we have all received one of these. We receive a promotion in the mail, through email, or even over the phone that leaves us wondering why they felt the need to send that to us in the first place. It has no value to us personally, and is essentially a waste of everyone’s time.

On the other hand, how great is it when marketing piece really speaks to you? It inspires you, makes you laugh, and even causes you to talk to a friend about it. At the time, it does not feel like marketing material at all, but rather a reminder. “Oh that reminds me, I do need to get my roof redone before winter comes. Looks like I better take advantage of this low HELOC rate”. When done correctly, receiving marketing materials does not feel like marketing at all. With that thought the question becomes, how does my Credit Union achieve that? How do we “remind” our members they need that new vehicle loan? The answer….DATA!

Although data relates to marketing for many reasons, two main topics illustrate why it is so important.

  1. Data leads to more effective marketing.
  2. Data allows us to analyze and understand previous marketing to improve in the future.

Taking this broad level approach, we can quickly identify why data would be important to marketing departments in any business. It allows Credit Unions to understand the various segments of their membership, and what is important to them. Quite frankly, college students don’t want a flyer on the great IRA’s that are available, but they do need to buy text books before next semester. Without data, everyone is getting the IRA flyer.

We all love feedback. Employees have annual performance reviews, and athletes study film to get ready for the next game. CEOs are constantly wanting to know the ROI of everything the Credit Union does. With that said, many marketers fail to review their previous work in order to perform better in the future. Typically, it is a statement of: “Let’s just do what we did last year, that seemed to work good”. Although that may have been the method in the past, 2018 is a fresh start.

This year, we need to take a more strategical approach to our marketing efforts, and we will do so utilizing data. Data allows Credit Unions to understand how well their marketing did, and what adjustments to make for future efforts. Imagine being able to show a direct correlation between your marketing efforts and the Credit Union’s bottom line at the next board meeting. Let’s start simple:

  1. Start forming a list of questions. This includes questions that management often ask you after running a campaign, and even questions you have had throughout the process. How much of our membership is this campaign even going to reach? Who are the best people to reach out to? Does this product make sense to promote right now? Start building this list, it will shine light into the weaknesses, that will eventually become the reason why the marketing department is full of rock stars.
  2. Start exploring “how” you could go about answering these questions. Dive into each question and get a sense of what it would take to answer. This will be the first stepping stone to understanding how beneficial data can be for your Credit Union’s marketing efforts.

In a world where data is available more than ever, it is time to start marketing more efficiently, and using hard evidence to determine how to market better in the future.

One comment

  1. Marketing, marketing, marketing……how about “driving sales”? I think you can drive a much more direct link between the data you have to: determine audience for sales efforts, determine the approach to the audience, pick the channel for the conversation, and time the interaction. I know marketers can make a drink of water look truly enticing, but I wonder about the data that helps force the horse to drink!
    Drive my sales…..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *