Evangelism and enchantment
Credit unions need to focus on enchantment, on persuading people to choose CUs over other financial providers, according to marketing innovator and best-selling author Guy Kawasaki.
The term “evangelism marketing” is attributed to Kawasaki, who helped Apple roll out Macintosh computers in the 1980s. “My job was to convince people to create Macintosh software,” he told the crowd at ACUC Monday. Today, he works for an Australian-based company called Canva.
“Finance is an analog business, not a digital business. It is not about big data,” he said before offering CUs several ways to “enchant” consumers.
If you want to disrupt a business, you have to be likeable, Kawasaki said. Greeting potential members with a wide, genuine smile is a key part of enchantment. “Make a Duchenne smile – not with the jaw, but with the eyes,” he said. “Crow’s feet are a good thing.”
Innovate and disrupt the technology
Kawasaki ran down a brief history of refrigeration technology in the 20th century, from companies that harvested blocks of ice on frozen lakes to factory-made ice delivered by “the ice man” to refrigerators people could have in their kitchens. “When companies define themselves by what they do rather than the benefits they provide, they do not embrace new technology. If you make ice in a factory, then you are disrupted by refrigerators. Get to the next curve. Anticipate the needs of your members. Be intelligent. Understand problems. Be complete. Great companies are not just deep, they are broad, such as Google. Be empowering. Have products and services that are elegant.”
Provide social proof that lots of people are using your credit union, Kawasaki counseled. He noted with Apple’s iPod came out it had white ear buds, which were unusual at the time. The more white ear buds were seen in public, the more people bought iPods – a nice sales circle.
CUs should use a dataset to change a mindset. “Change beliefs by using data to illustrate a point, and enchant all influencers. In some families the influencer is the wife, in my family it is my daughter.”
Learn how to present
When doing a pitch, CUs need to customize their presentation. Kawasaki described LinkedIn as “God’s gift to customization” because you can see what school someone went to, where they have worked and more. “When you present, sell your dream. When Steve Jobs presented an iPhone he did not hold it up and say ‘this is $188 worth of parts.’ It is presented as a beautiful piece of technology that will change your life.”
Use technology to enchant people
Remove the speed bumps to your organization, he advised. “Use social media well by providing valuable information, such as what does this new law or regulation mean to your members. Offer insight and assistance.”
Asked for specific way CUs can enchant their members, Kawasaki said his perspective is many people do not believe they can join certain credit unions due to their names – such as having to be in the Navy to join Navy Federal Credit Union. “Tell people they can use ATMs all over,” he offered. When told that already happens, he replied, “See, I didn’t know that.”
Social media is a disruptive, fast way to get the word out, Kawasaki said. “Give people a reason to follow you on social media. Offer tax tips, let them know how to set up a 529 [college savings account].”