Credit Union Digital Marketing

Author Erin Petro
Read time 6 minutes read time

Traditional outreach methods are becoming obsolete. Strategic credit union digital marketing reaches potential members of all age groups. It’s time to pivot in marketing and embrace these platforms.

But how do you establish meaningful connections with current and new members using digital media? There are products and tactics that can meet your marketing needs.

The Need for Credit Union Digital Marketing

In the 2023 Credit Union Digital Experience Report, 75% of credit unions surveyed reported digital marketing is a priority. Members and potential members have shifted their focus from print and other traditional media to digital.

Credit union marketing needs metrics to gauge success, and digital marketing provides those. You can collect and analyze potential and current members’ behavior. By knowing and understanding behavior, you can tailor marketing messages and services to their needs.

Digital marketing also allows for satisfaction and loyalty through personalized communication. It is a tool for keeping members engaged. So, beyond attracting new members it helps with retention.

Channels and Tactics for Credit Union Marketing

You must establish measurable and specific goals for a digital campaign. They must also be relevant. Goals have two purposes: They can guide you and enable you to measure outcomes.

There are several steps in setting goals, using channels and developing tactics. They are:

  • developing a user friendly website
  • content strategy
  • paid digital marketing
  • Google display ads
  • social media marketing

Besides the mechanics of a digital marketing campaign, an organized marketing calendar is needed. This will ensure all credit union digital marketing initiatives align with important dates, member needs and goals.

A User-Friendly Website

It all starts with the website. New and current members need to be able to easily navigate your website so they can find and purchase your products. Websites should have:

  • a responsive display
  • product-focused primary navigation
  • scan ability
  • clean layout and organization
  • calls to action over the customer journey

Your website is the foundation of your digital presence. It serves as your command center. It’s fundamental to a credit union marketing plan.

Build Content Strategy

Search engine optimization (SEO) focuses on website visibility. It ranks your website high on the search engine results page (SERP).

This involves enhancing your website’s visibility. In addition to optimizing its structure, you must have relevance, which improves organic performance.

One way to do this is through content or blogs. These should be deemed as helpful and relevant to the consumer.

By ranking higher on the SERP, you can enhance your online visibility.

But, one disadvantage to organic growth is time. It takes time to achieve results, so it requires a commitment.

Paid Digital Marketing and Display Ads

Paid digital marketing works faster than a content strategy. Pay-per-click (PPC) is a model that only charges advertisers when a potential member clicks through the ad. It’s a way to purchase visits instead of ranking organically.

These can be effective in targeting ads to specific demographics. An Optimized PPC campaign boosts visibility on search engines, like Google, and promotes your services to new members. It also reminds existing members what services you have available. 

For example, credit unions should use digital for members or non-members looking for a credit card. Nickels uses PPC to run paid digital marketing to help credit unions reach current and potential members within their community to show them why they’re better off with your credit union card.

Google Display Advertising

Google display advertising promotes your credit unions to potential members. Targeted to your intended demographics, ads are placed online where your customers are browsing.

Nickels takes advantage of this by using paid display advertising in a credit union’s field of membership to acquire new members and convert those looking for a new credit card.

Social Media Marketing

Another digital asset that should be in a credit union’s marketing plan is social media. Facebook is leveraged to promote membership drives.

Facebook ads have shown to be powerful tools for initiating a call to action. Nickels uses Facebook ads to capture high-revolving credit card users and promote low-interest credit union credit cards.

Example of a Digital Campaign

A credit card digital marketing campaign could be developed to promote credit card conversions from the big banks to your credit union.

Most Americans revolve on their credit, but they insist on looking for high-reward credit cards. Unfortunately, for them, high rewards mean high interest. The result is that revolvers earn only $11 billion in rewards while paying $122 billion in interest.

Nickels markets CardFit using a digital ad campaign. It shows revolvers how their big bank credit card truly compares to a low-interest credit union card.

This is done with selective targeting through PPC, display, and Facebook ads. Potential customers click through the ads and land on CardFit. CardFit shows how, by not paying the balance in full each month, a credit union credit card costs less because it has a lower interest rate.

Users often overlook credit union credit cards. CardFit reframes the credit card selection process around how most cardholders actually behave. This results in people choosing a card that best fits their lifestyle.

Only a digital campaign can give the member or non-member this instant comparison and elicit immediate action.

Digital Campaign Analytics

There are many avenues to analyze the analytics of a digital campaign. That’s a fundamental advantage to launching one.

The click-through rate (CTR) measures the ad’s attractiveness. Unlike other forms of advertising, you’ll receive a conversion rate, so you’ll see the actual outcome from those clicks.

But when it comes down to it, it’s all about cost-effectiveness. With digital campaigns, you receive a cost per conversion (CPC), which measures the cost-effectiveness of the ad.

Nickels effectively uses digital campaigns to provide potential members and current members with CardFit. With CardFit, credit unions can reorient the conversion from rewards to total card value, showing that credit union cards win.

About Nickels

Nickels is a CUSO that helps credit unions cross sell credit cards, shift spend to their cards, and refinance members’ competitor card debt. Founded in Ann Arbor, MI, their mission is to improve members’ credit card health, in part by shifting members from high interest competitor cards to lower rate credit union products. For more information, please visit