Simple Message Gets To The Point: 'Think Of Us'

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INDIANAPOLIS-It doesn't always take a special promotion or a creative ad campaign to convince consumers to bring their business to the credit union.

Sometimes it just takes a nudge.

That's the thinking behind Indiana Members CU's "Think of Us First" campaign, which reflects the $1.2-billion credit union's uncomplicated business philosophy.

"There are a lot of banks in Indianapolis," said CEO Ron Collier. "We think there is an advantage to be gained by keeping things simple and getting people, when they have a financial need, to just call us and see if we have something that might be a fit."

One of the credit union's television commercials shows a couple looking at a new home and asking each other "What do you think?" They both say: "Let's think of Indiana Members Credit Union." Print ads use the theme to plug checking, and auto and mortgage loans, noting IMCU is convenient, simple, and offers personal service.

"Our message is easy to understand. We say give us a shot at your business and we think you will be happy," explained Collier. "Drive around the Indiana beltway and you'll see billboards from financials whose fine print takes up one-third of the space. Our ads are not misleading and neither are our products."

Collier said IMCU does not employ promotional rates, has only two checking accounts, and lets members know when they launch a product the deal isn't going to change down the road. According to Collier, early results indicate the campaign has struck a chord with consumers. "Auto loans are up about a half million over the previous month, and mortgage loans are up as well-loan apps are up more than 20% in September. However, some of that is due to the fact we are covering closing costs up to $1,000. We're also up 100 net checking accounts."

Collier learned firsthand that the campaign is accomplishing its objective. "I spoke with a new member who told me he was always interested in the credit union since he lived nearby, and had thought about joining. He saw the commercials and that gave him the nudge he needed to stop in. He joined, and took car loans for himself and his son. Now he's applying for a mortgage."

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