Women: Credit Unions’ Most Influential Members

Why is it important to target women? Any woman reading this probably already knows the answer. So maybe this one is a little more for the guys. (Women, feel free to eavesdrop; We know you want to!)

The roles women play today are much different than what they used to be. We don’t need to tell you that, just look around and you’ll notice that women are slowly making their way to the top and breaking through the glass ceiling. By 2024, women’s salaries are projected to exceed men’s salaries and the consulting firm A.T. Kearney estimates that women determine 80% of consumption, purchase 60% of all cars and own 40% of all stocks. 1

Credit unions should be paying close attention to these trends; especially considering that women control 80% of the buying power in the U.S. as well as deal with 75% of family finances and control or influence 53% of family investment decisions. Women also handle 89% of checking accounts. 2 We don’t need to spell it out to you why this is important and impactful for your credit union. Just in case though, take a look at Verity Credit Union. They get it. Verity created an entire program just for moms (www.veritymom.com) and came up with the “Challenge Marketing Campaign.” They had 34 applicants, 24 fan pages and 134 blog posts. Smart move since women have the gift of gab and also make great referral sources. (Full disclosure:  Third Degree did not craft this campaign—we just respect it!)

Speaking of the gift of gab, Ft. Worth Community Credit Union just launched their campaign geared towards not only moms but women ages 28-55 (www.getyourworthon.com). This super-savvy campaign features “Gabby”, Ft. Worth’s spokeswoman who has the gift of gab and wants to share her money saving secrets with you. Tara Street, Third Degree’s Creative Director “gabs” about the campaign here.

Ft. Worth and Verity also noticed that women not only have the gift of gab (and ladies, it is a gift) but that they use the internet as one of their main forms of communication: not only are 56 million women on Facebook but one-third of all women in the U.S. participate in the blogosphere at least once a week.  A recent article in USA today boasts that “Women and young people are the most active users of social media today, and women in their 30s make up more than half of heavy contributors — that is, they engage in six or more social media activities.”   1,3,5

Every woman likes to save money but 84% of women feel misunderstood by investment marketers;  so a down-to-earth, friendly, credit union is the perfect, natural fit for women. 4 They price-compare and are coupon-clippers but are often pressed for time so they can rest assured that all of their financial needs will be taken care of from car loans, mortgages and checking accounts all in one stop. Ever wonder why Wal-Mart is so popular? Their main client-base is a mid-aged mother. As a credit union, are you making sure that you get the word out about how woman-friendly you are?

Your credit union needs to be in the driver’s seat of the minivans and SUV’s proudly displaying the soccer and hockey stickers on the back window. Jump in, make yourself comfortable, and enjoy the ride!

1. “Marketing to women quick facts”;http://she-conomy.com/report/facts-on-women; February 16,2011.
2. Diversity Best Practice & Business Women's Network: Wow! Quick Facts 2006 & 2007. All About Women Consumers 2007.
3. Borow, Brette.“10 Musts for Marketing to Women on Facebook”;http://mashable.com/2010/01/13/marketing-women-facebook/; February 16,2011.
4. Rodriguez, Marvin. “Is the market of tomorrow a women’s world?”;http://www.suite101.com/content/womens-influence-in-the-marketplace-a239469; February 16,2011.
5. Terbush, Sophie. “Women, young adults are active ‘social animals’”; www.yourlife.usatoday.com; February 20, 2011.

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