Getting Credit Unions Into The Parade

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There's no such thing as "credit unioning" but there is such a thing as "banking"-and that means CUs must work harder to get credit unions into the mainstream.

Eastern Financial Florida CU's Gary Lanier suggested some ways credit unions can do just that.

"The term 'credit union' is just not in the mainstream media, you just don't see it in movies, television shows, print," Lanier lamented. "What I think would be great is if when the people on [television show] 'Lost' finally get to the other side of the island, they find a resort and a credit union in the background."

Indeed, Lanier, like many marketing experts, suggested that product placement is going to be the key to advertising success in an age where TiVo allows viewers to zap right through any commercials.

CUNA's participation in the Hula Bowl qualifies as a major step in that direction, but Lanier suggested there might be a better way to do this.

For one thing, he noted, football tends to be a draw for men more so than women, and study after study shows the importance of reaching out to women. So, instead of participating in a major football game, why not participate in the major parade associated with that football game-like the Rose Bowl parade.

"If every state league contributed $20,000, then credit unions could have a float in the Rose Bowl parade. Then you could have one person from each state on the float, and have contests to win the right to be on the float," he said. "The football game is for the men. The parade-that's a family event. That draws the women and children, too."

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