Campaign also changed consumers' perception of credit unions: More thought of credit unions as offering better rates, fewer fees
Virginia Credit Union League
800.768.3344, ext. 604
More than 1.1 million consumers, mostly Virginians, learned more about credit unions and their benefits through an awareness campaign created and funded by the commonwealth's not-for-profit, member-owned credit unions.
The ‘QuitTheHit’ Social Media Campaign was launched in April to increase awareness and drive consumers to learn about the benefits of membership in Virginia-based credit unions. A unique, humorous video was produced and shared through YouTube to reach those in Virginia ages 18 to 35, and encourage them to visit the campaign's informational website at www.QuitTheHit.com.
The campaign successfully reached the targeted demographic, with more than 66,000 consumers visiting the informational website, via the video,andover 25,000 utilizing the “search for a credit union” feature.
“This was an unconventional and bold strategy for credit unions in Virginia and we set the bar high expecting to reach at least 1 million consumers. We relied on consumer research and designed an edgy, humorous campaign leveraging the power of social media to help reach that goal. Thanks to our credit unions' commitment to promoting this campaign, we surpassed our goal and reached more than 1.1 million consumers,” says Rick Pillow, president of the Virginia Credit Union League.
Awareness of credit unions in Virginia was already high at 78 percent, according to research by the Virginia Credit Union League. But, this campaign successfully reduced the “fog” of uncertainty surrounding credit union membership, with fewer consumers now saying credit unions are not a viable financial services option.
Post-campaign research and tracking revealed that double the percentage of consumers (from 4% to 8%) now have lower rates and fees as “top of mind” when they think of credit unions. Following the campaign, more consumers (from 56% to 61%) said they want to find out additional information about credit unions and their benefits, according to independent research.
Virginia-based credit unions boast a total membership of more than 7.9 million, as of March 31, 2013. However, only an estimated 3.25 million of that number reside in Virginia, owed to the number of Virginia-based credit unions, especially those primarily affiliated with the government and military, serving members nationwide, and in some cases, all over the globe.
Virginia-based credit unions saved their members an estimated $689 million during 2012, owed to better rates and less-costly fees when compared to for-profit banks, according to an analysis by the Credit Union National Association.
About The Campaign
Independent consumer research was conducted to determine the strategy and message of the campaign. Research showed consumers feel they are taking a "hit" from the economy and are suffering the impact of higher prices and rising fees. The creative team took the idea of feeling hit to a literal level and designed a video to reflect this feeling. The campaign video features a "George Washington" character, who represents money, physically taunting the main character.
The Campaign was coordinated by the Virginia Credit Union League, the state trade association for credit unions based in the commonwealth, and funding was made possible by the financial contributions of 50 Virginia-based credit unions, the League and a number of generous sponsors.
About Credit Unions
Learn about Virginia's 177 credit unions by visiting the website of the Virginia Credit Union League, the state trade association that promotes and protects Virginia's credit union system, while offering products and services that help credit unions best serve their members – www.vacul.org.
To find a credit union near you, please visit www.QuitTheHit.com for a searchable database of credit unions and their membership options.