SLCCU Learns To Make Right Offer At Right Time At Right Price

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Talk to members about the right offer at the right time for the right price.

That's what St. Louis Community Credit Union officials are looking for after implementing Cross Sell and Tracking offered from Integrasys.

Cross Sell and Tracking allows a credit union to set its own cross-selling criteria related to what it wants to sell and to which members. For example, as spring approaches, the program could be set to offer loans for a summer vacation, a new boat or a recreational vehicle.

St. Louis Community Credit Union Executive VP Patrick Adams called the new program an administrative tool that allows a teller to move from simply processing a member transaction to building a relationship. While cross selling creates revenue for any credit union, Adams said it's his obligation to identify and educate members about new and better financial deals.

"Now we have a tool we can place in the teller's hands that better serves our members," Adams said.

St. Louis Community ran a test of the program in March 2005 and reported $650,000 worth of new CD business by the end of April, 2005. SVP-Operations Diane Giebe said using Cross Sell doesn't add any time to a member transaction. Pop-up messages appear on a teller's computer screen showing how the member's financial profile relates to the CU's programs, such as different savings options, money market accounts or lower loan rates. Tellers received three days of training before returning to member service.

"I just think it's fantastic. It's so easy," Giebe said.

One St. Louis Community member was convinced to switch to a daily interest account, which Adams said actually cost the credit union a little bit of money, but was a better arrangement for the member.

What Members Are Saying

Adams said he hasn't heard of any member complaints about tellers being invasive and found "the reverse to be true," with members saying that they appreciated being told about better rates or new programs.

Adams said tellers are not "closers" but use cross selling to create marketing impressions as a member waits for a transaction to finish. Giebe said the pop-up messages make it easy for tellers and in turn creates a new opportunity. "Our tellers never asked before and now they are," Giebe said.

Adams said using Cross Sell reflects the growing sophistication of credit unions around the nation and offers a way to move unprofitable members to the profitable column. Adams said much of his membership in the St. Louis area are "Joe Six Pack" types who can use, and appreciate, extra advice from his tellers.

In Dallas, IntegraSys Senior Vice President Albert Ku said Cross Sell is a way to offer new services to more members. Ku said the pop-up scripts for tellers were to refresh the memory of a member and suggest a new or better solution. "You're not going to dump 10 items on them," Ku said.

For example, Ku said if a member visited a creit union, a teller could see the member's loan information through a legitimate credit bureau. If the teller notices that the member had an outstanding boat loan at 11%, the teller could then offer a lower refi rate set by that credit union.

Ku said it reflects a "cultural shift" in credit unions reflecting the desire to get more wallet share from existing members. While some very large credit unions have expanded cross selling, it's still relatively new for the industry, he said. Ku said the real opportunity for cross selling is with existing members who are seen on a daily basis.

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