After One Fort Worth Credit Union Converts, 11 Others Place Ad Directed at Former Members

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Eleven credit unions in the Fort Worth area co-sponsored a full-page ad in the Fort Worth Star Telegram last month reminding area residents that CUs are standing by to serve them.

The ad that intentionally resembled the style, logo and design of OmniAmerican Bank (formerly OmniAmerican Credit Union) included its own definitions for both a bank and a credit union and encouraged readers to "Make your move....choose a credit union."

"We wanted to let the consumers be aware that if their credit union converts to a bank, they don't have to be stuck with them,'' said Rochelle Drake, VP of Marketing at Fort Worth Community with $611 million in assets.

The goal, of course, was to lure former OmniAmerican CU members to Fort Worth Community or other sponsoring CUs, she said.

"If members wanted to be customers of a bank, they would have joined a bank in the first place,'' Drake said, adding that the OmniAmerican's conversion did trigger concern by members that all CUs would eventually take the same path.

While it's too soon to measure the success of the ad, Drake said, new members are being surveyed to determine how they learned about the CU with the ad as one of the choices. And, there has already been some discussion about running a second ad.

Drake said that Shawn Cooney, graphic designer at Fort Worth Community CU, worked hard to create the ad in-house.

Area credit union officials agreed as they helped pay the $7,300 to run the full page ad on Feb. 25 in the paper's front section. Their logos were prominently displayed at the bottom.

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