USAlliance Federal Credit Union was opening a new branch in Cambridge, MA, a town with a large student/faculty population. The credit union's senior management wanted to approach this group of prospects to generate business among this customer demographic. Historically, larger, more mainstream banks had held control on this population demographic with their existing branches throughout the campuses. The credit union decided to contact Proforma for an outside perspective on the opportunities:
Conduct a successful program launch in a "locked" market
The challenge presented by an organization with a small number of branches
Generate accurate information regarding opening an account and gaining account access through an effective communication vehicle The opening of a new USAlliance branch in the area
We knew that appealing to this demographic, the academic students would be a challenge. In an effort to investigate all potential 'new customer' demographics, we decided it would be beneficial to determine the opportunity among the entire market segment and challenge the initial perception that the student population was the best opportunity for growth.
By researching the demographics, it was determined that approximately 35% of the town's total population was school faculty, students and administrative personnel. The remaining 65% of the population were "other" people. Additionally, the majority of these people leaned heavily towards the liberals were anti-establishment, many 50+ in age, and commonly referred to as former "hippies".
By focusing on the obvious student population, the credit union's previous marketing ideas would not make as significant an impact as with the majority of its potential customers. Proforma presented a very edgy campaign with the marketing slogan, "Power to the People" with the subhead "Member-Driven, Not Profit-Driven" to further enhance the anti-establishment feeling.
USAlliance shared with Proforma their goals for new deposits at the Cambridge branch over the next quarter. With Proforma's help, USAlliance achieved double their goal in a single month! While the credit union advertised a great Certificate Rate, "Power to the People" generated the type of response that hits peoples’ souls and delivered powerful results.
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