Skip to main content
All Posts By

Ken Dunn

Getting (and Keeping it) Personal at Financial Institutions

By Blog, Consumer Experience, Personalization

Personal ServiceIn 2002, the futuristic thriller Minority Report predicted the world where with a subtle retina scan would allow retailers to offer their customers personalized discounts based on their purchase history. Today, this way of marketing is possible. The subtle retina scan of the film has been replaced by online activity. And with a little effort and our member service tips your financial institution can transform science fiction into marketing fact–and consumer satisfaction.

The future is now.

E-commerce personalization is working its way to a world where every email, every branch visit, every mobile offer and even every website visited will be personalized to your patron. It’s not only what many have experienced. It’s beginning to become what many expect.

Each day innovative brands are leading the way, ushering in a new age of customer experience. In this era, messages are more relevant. Offers are more accurate. And every customer interaction is customized.

Why wouldn’t financial institutions lead the way?

For decades, financial institutions have built their brands on the ability to know their customers better than their competitors. We pride ourselves in knowing each patron by name the moment they walk through the branch door.

In this new age, we can continue to see our patrons as more than a number. We can personalize their communications. We can give them a voice. Once we see technology as a way to be more involved in our patrons’ lives we can help shape the future of the digital customer experience. Our touch points can be more accurate, personalized and relevant.

The key to personalization? Listening.

By tracking real-time behavior, consumer data, interests, and preferences, we can better deliver personalized communications. This kind of information can be harnessed by tracking a broad collection of channels and utilizing sophisticated data analytic software and services. The technology that accomplishes these tasks is not just available; it has permeated our business.

And then, there is a new school of thought rooted in an old school philosophy. Marketers are simply asking their audience what they want. By talking to their customers and taking an interest in their needs, they discover new and different ways to craft a better customer experience.

Through technology or person-to-person conversations, marketers are taking personalization to a new level in a practice called predictive intelligence. This new practice involves forecasting a customer’s needs and delivering customized communications accordingly.

Where we are on the personalization curve.

This new form of marketing can come with a completely new set of challenges. The big data and real-time analytics needed to create potent personalized communications come with equally pervasive privacy concerns. Currently most marketers are justifying their deep dive into this trend by wanting to deliver the best customer experience possible.

A recent Forrester study interviewed more than 100 marketing executives to assess the significance of marketing personalization. While the technology isn’t new, the prevailing interest is. More than 70% of the executives interviewed felt that personalization was of great strategic importance. And while the importance of this trend is recognized, very few marketers are taking the lead. The study revealed that only 17% of CMOs are going beyond basic transaction data to create personalized marketing. The fact that 80% hope to do a better job utilizing this technology only proves that few companies are harnessing the true power of personalization.

Who’s doing it right and how?

Successful personalization marketers are beginning with stated customer preferences and purchase histories. More advanced practitioners are studying social sentiment, contextual behaviors, and location information to create a complete data personalization picture. They often partner with experienced big data providers, analytic consultancies, and data developers to collect and understand their customer’s needs.

To sum all of this up, the potential to build your institution’s brand utilizing marketing personalization is impressive. Loyalty can easily be built with messaging that is customized to fit the consumer. In the not-too-distant future, this way of creating and absorbing marketing messages will no longer be the exception but the rule. Consumers may soon expect and even demand their brands to hone their messaging to fit their needs. The fact that we aren’t listening and responding may be seen as a brand that just doesn’t care.

 

 

Sources:

 

http://www.exacttarget.com/products/web-personalization/web-personalization-best-practices/building-personalized-customer-experience

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/sap/2014/03/12/personalization-the-secret-to-better-customer-experience/

The Perfect Marketing Budget in Three Steps

By Blog, Financial Marketing

Marketing BudgetIn the world of branding and financial marketing, you have to spend money to make money. But how much to spend? Where do you spend it and how do you make the most of if? These nagging questions can be answered by following a few detailed steps.

Before we dig in, it’s good to note that many organizations already have set budgets and reliable budgeting practices. Look at the following steps as a way to gain a fresh perspective or even a way to persuade your co-workers to look at the marketing budget just a bit differently.

Step 1: Count the money

If your budget has yet to be determined, or if you’d like a little ammo to convince the keeper of your budgetary purse strings to loosen them a bit, here are some general industry standards.

The source of many company’s marketing budgets come directly from annual sales. This amount ranges from one to ten percent depending on the company. A new, emerging organization is building a new and relatively unknown brand. That sort of situation can justify dedicating ten percent of sales to introduce the brand into the market. Some aggressive start-ups have even been able to justify 15 percent.

If your institution and your brand are well established, a lower percentage sometimes makes the most sense. But that approach will often provide status quo results–something to think about when managing your budget and your credit union’s marketing expectations.

Step 2: Dole out the money

Once your total annual budget is determined, it’s time to develop an annual marketing plan. Every savvy marketer will be asked to do more for less. These are where the decisions can get tough. Studying past success and continuing or increasing your spend in a particular medium, say radio, is a safe bet. And playing it safe can make a lot of sense depending on your goals. The trick is to diversify your channels to create flexibility in your mix and to ensure a broader reach in your message.

Making a detailed annual plan also creates the perfect opportunity to sock away a little mad money. Take a small percentage of your budget and try something your credit union has never done before. Look at it has a high-risk, high-reward endeavor — this year’s attempt to swing for the fences. Try a geo-located SMS campaign. Invest in some big data research. Fund an out-of- the-box PR stunt. Whatever it is, make sure it’s original enough to make a few co-workers, and maybe even yourself, a little uncomfortable. And since the percentage of your budget used for your little marketing experiment is low, the actual risk is greatly diminished.

Step 3: Track the money.

After you’ve made your marketing plan, execute it to the best of your ability. Just don’t think that’s the end. When your message gets out into the world is when the fun begins. You can monitor what’s working and what’s falling flat. This is your chance to react and adjust your spending plan. In the world of digital marketing and social networking, the information about your branding is out there. You may just need to listen. Or you may need to actively hunt down the information. But once you have it, treat it like gold.

Analyze every dollar spent and then remember that your plan is just that — a plan. It wasn’t carved in granite, and it was meant to be adjusted. Weed out the poor performing channels. Aggressively feed the media that are working like gangbusters and are still hungry for more. The trick is the know when to pull the plug on one and crank up the volume on the other. When making these adjustments rely on your experience, the advice of others, and some old-fashioned marketing intuition. Making these decisions should be as much of an art as a science.

So work diligently to get the best out of every cent in your marketing budget. Keep a keen eye open for changes in channels and in the latest technology when making your plan. Make sure your media mix is diverse. Use history to make some decisions, but don’t get so stuck in the past that you’ll miss the future. And once you implement your plan, be nimble. Certain channel performances will change, and the successful marketer will be ready, willing, and able to change with it.

Mastering these steps will lead to lead to an increase in sales and, in turn, an increase in your marketing budget for next year.

 

 

Sources:

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/davelavinsky/2013/06/07/three-steps-to-a-solid-marketing-budget/

 

http://www.inc.com/guides/2010/09/how-to-build-your-marketing-budget.html

How to Be There When They Want a Loan

By Blog, Direct Marketing, Financial Marketing

A big challenge for any financial institution’s direct marketing strategy is to knowing how to be there when your people want a loan. Your best loan prospects might be shopping for cars or a Customer Service Improvementrecreational vehicle, or even considering a remodel on their kitchen. But no one at the institution knows it, so they miss the opportunity to provide a lending option via direct mail, email or any other direct marketing product.

And missing the opportunity is exactly what most small financial institutions are doing. According to CUNA Mutual Group, 91% of consumer lending happens outside of credit unions. That means the credit union crowd, they are only capturing 9% of the market. According to the FDIC Community Bank Study in 2012, community banks have fared much better than credit unions in community consumer (and commercial) lending, but their growth has declined (particularly in the asset sizes less than $100 million) while big banks continue to climb in asset size. So they are losing out to the bigger fish.

Most financial institutions present lending options at branch locations, through direct mail or online. These are great options, and they all still have great rates of re-turn for the investment.

But while direct marketing is an effective way to communicate pertinent information about your lending programs and all the great benefits of taking out a loan with you, it doesn’t identify when someone undertakes an active search for a loan.

So how do you do that? How can you be there when your customers want a loan?

It’s called the Loan Generator and here’s how it works:

• Using specific and most current data on your prospects, we pre-approve them for up to eight different loan products.
• The pre-approvals are filed with their account information, standing by so they are ready when your customer is.
• When the customer needs a loan, they simply activate their loan, immediately. They do not have to talk to a representative or go to a branch or fill out an application, they can activate it anywhere—including their mobile device. In that case, they sign the loan paperwork on their screen.
• It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year. (So any-time, literally).
• You can communicate these pre-approvals though several channels (as the video demonstrates…and you know that because we know you watch that video, right?).

And that’s great and all, but how do you get it in front of them at the right time? Now here’s where this product is brilliant. In this video, you see how a person could activate their loan—while they are still in the store shopping (This video is even shorter than the one above, so if you are only going to watch one, pick this one!):

CUneXus Mobile SSO with Documents from CUneXus Solutions on Vimeo.

Can you imagine the return on investment that your institution would reap from an initiative like this? You don’t have to imagine; we’ll tell you (we’re good like that). In multiple documented test cases, The Loan Generator TM has shown loan volume increases from 300% to 500% and a 5 to 1 ROI.

More and more financial institutions are embracing a technology platform that al-lows you to offer pre-approved loans at the point of purchase—when people are nowhere near your branch, their mailbox or their laptop. And, they are increasing their loan portfolio and the return on investment at the same time they are decreasing their acquisition costs.

Are you ready to be one of them?

Sources:

http://www.ncua.gov/Resources/OSCUI/Documents/MarketingRpt.PDF Page 5

Cuna Loan Generation Brochure

https://www.cunamutual.com/products/lending/loan-generation-marketing

5 Myths about Marketing Loans on Mobile Platforms

By Blog, Financial Marketing

Myth SignThe latest change is here for marketing loans on a mobile platform, and it’s a good one. Let’s take this change and view it through the lens of the consumer.

 

You’re in a big box store, and a big screen catches your eye. It catches everyone’s eye. This TV has a you-could-sell-popcorn-and-tickets-big, big screen. But it also comes with a big price tag. You want that TV, but you also want to be able to pay for your kid’s college education.

 

Then ping! Out of nowhere, you get a message from your credit union. They noticed that you’re in the previously referenced big box retailer, and would like you to know that you’re pre-approved for a loan.

 

This point is when things get interesting for marketing loans on mobile platforms.

 

You pop open a few windows. You swipe here; you tweak there. You use the touchscreen to sign the application and, bingo! You’re the proud owner of the biggest screen on the block. And you financed it quickly and easily on your phone in the aisle of the store.

 

It’s like you’re George Jetson without the flying car.

 

This product is the next development in mobile banking, and it’s a great opportunity to generate loan business. It’s another example of how mobile phones are changing our lives. If you want to be a part of your customers’ lives, you need to get on board and leverage these changes.

 

Sometimes the best way of learning what to do is knowing what not to do. So, here are the top Mobile Mistakes currently happening in our industry.

 

Mobile Myth #1: Smartphones and tablets are the same.

 

They’re not. Since analysis for these two platforms are often lumped into one category, it’s a common mistake to develop a single content strategy for both. Big mistake. Consumers use these devices differently. Smartphones are used more for functional, need-based tasks and tablets are used more for relaxing as well as gaming. Plan your content accordingly.

 

Mobile Myth #2: Responsive design is a good mobile strategy.

Responsive design is great. It’s also a tactic instead of a strategy. Use responsive design to better deliver better content. Develop a strategy based off how your customers use their devices. Then, create content that fits that strategy.

 

Mobile Myth #3: Your mobile content strategy does well on its own.

 

Not so fast. You should have an all-encompassing content strategy that involves mobile. This philosophy goes back to offering a full Omni-channel experience for your customer. And if you’re struggling with the Omni-channel term, it means that when it comes to your content, your right hand should know what your left hand is doing — metaphorically speaking.

 

Mobile Myth #4: Desktop and mobile content standards are different.

 

Not really. The fact is, great content is great content. So no matter if you’re writing for desktop or smartphone users write with them in mind. Be concise. Have compelling headlines. Reward them for spending time with you. These are but practices for mobile, desktop and traditional marketing as well. So in this case, things haven’t changed. Whew.

 

Mobile Myth #5: The only good mobile content is short content.

 

Surprisingly there are situations where mobile users will consume long content. As content developers, we may have overreacted to this rule. Recent studies have shown that users get frustrated when websites don’t have enough content. This may be a result of users whipping out their phones more as a distraction while on the run.

 

 

There you have it; opportunities to leverage and mistakes to avoid. We’ll close with one last piece of advice, adopt these quickly and get ready to see these as “the old way” of doing mobile within months, maybe weeks. After all, when it comes to this medium, the only constant is change.

 

Sources:

 

http://www.clickz.com/clickz/column/2358030/5-myths-about-mobile-content-strategies-and-what-you-can-do-instead

Speak their language and their channel. 3 keys to Generational Marketing.

By Blog, Financial Marketing, Millennials

Generational MarketingLet’s open up with a big caveat. Grouping any person into a category can be dangerous. Broad conclusions like Millennials are glued to their phones, Boomers are brand loyal, and Gen Xers are cynical can lead to tired, stereotypical messaging.

There is some power that comes with focus. And breaking down your approach to fit your audience is just smart marketing. So let’s do just that. Here are three ways you can gain success through segmentation.

  1. Customize your offering to fit their lives.

Millennials are one of the more educated generations in recent history. As a credit union that means they’ll have more student loan debt than others. Educating them on how to deal with this and other debt will bring them closer to your brand.

Gen Xers can come to the party with a healthy amount of skepticism. An offer with a guarantee will build much-needed trust and show you’re communicating with transparency. Directness and honesty, a hallmark of all credit unions, will hold a lot of weight for this audience.

Baby boomers are often active and on the move. Pushing a loan application that’s fast and easy will be appealing to them. This ease of use can be a good rule of thumb while offering any product to this generation.

  1. Pick the right channel

Millennials are adept with their technology. An SMS or social media led campaign will hold a lot of traction for them. Email works as well but relying on one channel when reaching out to this or any audience is a no-no.

Gen Xers are easily reached through email. They will also frequently price check before making a decision so make your online offers easy to find and share. Surprisingly, direct mail also works for Gen Xers. A recent study shows that 74 percent of Generation X actively read and respond to direct mail.

Baby Boomers can surprise you to with their online media usage. Banner ads that lead to your website will gain you a successful response rate. Combine that with a strong print presence and you’ll pack a promising one-two media placement punch.

  1. Respond the way they’ll respond

Millennials feel most comfortable in the digital world. It’s not that they avoid human interaction, quite the contrary. They just want that interaction to be on their terms and through media that is most comfortable to them. Applying online or accepting a online chat with a loan officer to gain some more information will make for a very successful call to action.

Gen Xers often need research to validate their choices. Driving them to your website for more information will garner the best results. Granted, the sale won’t be as immediate but in the long run it will be more effective. Once they find the right information, they’ll commit with confidence.

Baby Boomers might start online and with print but their most effective call to action is by phone. They appreciate personal relationships and a direct conversation with an informed associate is the direct line for their business. Email is also an option with this generation who wants things quick and easy.

Let’s not blindly ignore the detractors.

Many pundits turn their nose up at marketing to specific generations. They claim that the definition of a Boomer or Gen Xer is constantly changing. Others would argue that these segments were created through shared experiences. In this new age of constant contact with the outside world they believe that everything is shared. And if everything is shared we all, in a sense, belong to one large diverse “generation”. Lastly, many remind us that age doesn’t necessarily dictate a life stage. Boomers can take out student loans and Millenials can research the difference between a traditional and Roth IRA. So see these options just as they are offered — as options.

If you choose to take these suggestions as potent generational rules, be sure to break them. While segmenting your marketing efforts by generation can garner results, there are rules that cross all generational lines.

When you have information readily accessible from multiple channels, when you seek to empower more than sell and when you reach your customer through their own self interests you’ll have marketing that works. And those practices will be effective no matter what you’re target’s age or affiliation.

 

Source:

http://thefinancialbrand.com/37695/credit-union-banking-marketing-millennial-members/

 

http://www.scotsmanguide.com/Residential/Articles/2012/03/4-Factors-of-Generational-Marketing/?pg=1

Using Technology to create better account holder experiences.

By Blog, Financial Marketing, Technology

Technology

The bar keeps getting set higher. The expectations for superior service continue to grow. An investment in the right technology will help you meet and exceed consumer expectations.

Consumers are more informed and more connected than ever. With the blinding speed of banking technology advancement and new online offerings, keeping consumers happy and engaged means you’ll need to find new ways to surprise and delight them. And leveraging technology to improve your relationship is vital in the online age.

Here are a few ways we can make their lives better:

Polish your social skills.

Social networking has introduced us to the recommendation era. Consumers are online giving and receiving advice about everything from cars to ballpoint pens. Everyone has an opinion, and every opinion can be broadcast. This fact presents an unprecedented opportunity to join and shape the conversation. And that word “conversation” is key. Social networking is an amazing medium for two-way communication. We get to listen as much as talk, and we get to guide the conversation. So make your posts about “something that starts something.” Because once the conversation begins, the relationship deepens. It’s all part of a well planned social engagement strategy.

Branch out.

Today’s member needs to be connected to their money 24/7/365. Their laptop and their smartphone are their new branch. This fact doesn’t mean that the personal service and relationships are less important. The brick and mortar branch is still a vital part of your relationship. But it’s now simply one channel of a multipart network.

The complete relationship has extended to other options. It’s why mobile banking and mobile check deposits need to be more than technology. ..they need to be personalized. Make those features a positive experience by making your banking technology as easy and friendly as dealing with one of your very own representatives.

Crunch the numbers

The hyper-informed member can now easily shop around for the best rate on loans, deposit accounts, and credit cards. With smartphones, they can find a better offer while standing in your branch. In addition to price, the breadth of offerings and perceived stability are additional considerations for your member. Translation? The battle for their business is fierce. The personal relationship you have with your account holders will often give you the one competitive advantage that might make the difference in maintaining the account. Keep your rates competitive and easy to find to improve your chances of client retention.

Make a dynamic statement

The monthly banking statement is a tried and true facet of your relationship with your members. A jaw-dropping 95% of transactional statements are opened and read. Compare that to the open rate of promotional materials and you can see why this particular opportunity to deepen your relationship with your accounts holds some real promise.

Enter the Dynamic Statement.

Imagine the deepened appreciation that will come with an interactive, intuitive and inviting statement. Suddenly your account holders will become an engaged participant in their finances and you’ll get all the credit for helping them! The enhanced functionality allow users to be just a few clicks away from information that’s relevant to them. With access from any laptop, tablet or smartphone — they can personalize and customize their accounts.

Imagine users starting with the expected overview of financial data. With a simple click, they could analyze different charts and graphs and see more detailed information displayed in full-color down to the transaction in a particular month, week or even day. They could then sort their expenses by date, category or even amount spent.

As the definition of convenience shifts from the amount of traditional branches and ATMs to staying connected digitally to your money 24/7, the dynamic statement could change the way your accounts see their finances and their financial institution. It very well could redefine online banking.

Cultivate a deeper relationship

From digital banking to social networking to dynamic statements, every new advancement in technology is an opportunity to become a vital advocate in the lives of consumers. By being high tech and high touch, we can win loyalty and deepen trust. Technology is power. Harness it and you will have the competitive advantage needed to succeed in this new era.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

http://www.cutimes.com/2014/10/06/6-tips-to-manage-the-member-experience

 

https://www.cuinsight.com/an-enhanced-member-experience-can-start-with-the-statement.html

Using Digital Lending Solutions to Fuel Growth

By Blog

Originally posted on The Financial Brand

Advancements in digital lending technology are now available for banking organizations of all sizes, leveling the playing field in a marketplace crowded with new non-banking start-ups.  Want to learn more?  Check out the Loan Generator.

Financial startups built on digital platforms are leading the charge to democratize advanced technology and superior UI/UX for banks and credit unions. Asset size is no longer a limitation that holds back banks and credit unions from implementing advanced technology. If a $150 million asset-sized credit union can have a more advanced consumer lending platform by partnering with a start-up than the nation’s top banks, than any bank or credit union can. New partnerships between banks and credit unions have been plentiful for well over a decade.

According to McKinsey & Company, “Absent any mitigating actions by banks, in five major retail banking businesses – consumer finance, mortgages, lending to small and medium-size enterprises, retail payments, and wealth management—from 10 to 40% of bank revenues (depending on the business) could be at risk by 2025. Attackers are likely to force prices lower and cause margin compression.” While the hype has been focused on how new startups selling directly to consumers will disinter mediate banks, there are several examples of where innovation is being build with legacy banks and credit unions in mind.

Many bank and credit union marketers are challenged with using marketing to originate loans. Historically, they only competed with other banks. Now they compete with marketplace lenders (MPLs). MPLs have even encroached on traditional bank marketing channels like direct mail. The inability of any marketing channels to reach consumers needing a loan at their zero moment of truth (ZMOT) is an additional impediment to a bank marketer’s ability to grow loan balances.

Financial technology start-ups are continuing to create exciting solutions to get funds into consumers’ hands. One example is Affirm, a company that currently offers installment loans to consumers at the point of sale. On the heels of raising $100 million in funding, they have plans to create more products and services that will be offered directly to consumers. Innovation in digital technology moves fast.

How fast? Two weeks after announcing their funding, Affirm announced their acquisition of PFM app Sweep. This type of competition will be a challenge for most banks to overcome as their traditional legacy products and services, user experiences, and technology can’t compete. Financial organizations and bank marketers need help.

Financial Technology + MarTech = Contextual Car Loans

The next big innovation in lending is contextual loan offers to car shoppers. The good news for banks and credit unions is that the company behind this innovation is CUneXus. CUneXus, a leader in omnichannel, application-free lending technology, has been delivering leading digital consumer lending solutions to banks and credit unions with asset sizes from $150 million to $10 billion for years. CUneXus has removed the biggest piece of friction in the consumer lending process: the application. In 2014, they launched their lending platform, cplXpress (Comprehensive Pre-Screened Lending Express) at Finovate Spring. This product is an always-on lending dashboard based on each partner financial institution’s existing lending criteria.

 

Picture2-530x600

The latest innovation from CUneXus is called AutoXpress. The platform gives banks and credit unions an end-to-end auto purchasing experience. CUneXus debuted this technology at Finovate Spring 2016, showcasing the integration with the DCU (Digital Credit Union) mobile app. DCU, with nearly $7 billion in assets, is the largest credit union based in New England. To build out this platform, CUneXus partnered with Edmunds.com.

AutoXpress is built directly into the cplXpress platform. This new capability shows the consumer their pre-approved car loan amount, term, and rate. The partnership with Edmunds adds the capability of providing 100% guaranteed pre-negotiated vehicle pricing of the car dealer’s inventory. This all happens within the partner bank or credit union’s mobile banking app.

Picture4-530x600Picture5-530x600

Edmunds has this capability with nearly 14,000 car dealers nationwide. Other partnerships will also provide a GAP policy and an array of competitive auto insurance quotes. CUneXus also partnered with the marketing technology provider, MobileRQ, a pioneer in contextual mobile marketing. MobileRQ’s technology drives the targeting and personalization capability of the platform, including location-awareness and the tailored notifications.

A customer can walk onto a car lot and MobileRQ’s geo-targeting technology enables a push notification to reach that customer’s smart phone, reminding them they have a pre-approved auto loan available. A link takes them to the mobile banking app, showing their loan options – amount, rate, term, etc. The financing is taken care of, they’re pre-approved and no application is necessary.

Picture1-530x600This end-to-end car shopping experience allows banks to provide value at or near a car buyer’s ZMOT. Traditional digital marketing could never do this. According to Tyler McKinley, CEO of MobileRQ, “Personalization and mobile are now critical for successful retail banking institutions. Data-driven, customer interactions within banks’ own mobile apps are the future of consumer lending. Combining CUneXus’ on-demand lending solutions with MobileRQ’s data-driven, mobile personalization platform enables banks to drive multi-product revenue growth and simply service their customers better.”

Using Loans to Acquire New to Bank Customers

CUneXus is not the only bank friendly digital loan solution company. Avoka, with their digital engagement platform “Avoka Transact for Financial Services,” is a frictionless sales platform for originating loans. They offer a great solution for acquiring new to bank loan customers.

How easy is their platform? Watch the Avoka Finovate Spring 2015 demo where they demonstrate filling out a mobile web browser optimized loan application to a non-bank customer in under five minutes.

The Marketplace Lending Opportunity

Many banks have begun to embrace working with marketplace lenders (MPLs). The most notable are core banking provider Jack Henry & Associates and Chase Bank, who have deals in place with OnDeck Capital. Other banks also work with one or more of the MPLs, and some banks have built their own competing platform.

CUneXus has partnered with the Crowdnetic Gateway to allow the integration of multiple marketplace lenders into the cplXpress platform. This optional capability will allow banks to be the true relationship manager for their clients.

Luan Cox, CEO of Crowdnetic, opines on their integration with CUneXus, “The demands of the financial services industry are evolving at a rapid pace. CUneXus provides exactly what banks and credit unions need to keep up with the changing demands of their customers. For most financial institutions (large and small), building innovative technology with the speed that is required today is simply not possible. We are incredibly excited to be partnered with CUneXus in combining our Marketplace Lending Gateway platform to help deliver innovative loan products from over 20 lending partners such as Lending Club, Marlette/Best Egg, Prosper, and OnDeck.”

Power of Partnerships

The hype around new start-ups and venture capital investment is huge. According to “The Pulse of Fintech, 2015 in Review” report by KPMG and CB Insights, VC’s funded $13.8 billion in FinTech globally in 2015 ($7.7 billion was invested in the US). Banks and credit unions have to remember that there are a lot of startups that are building technology solutions with partnerships in mind. These solutions allow for improved customer experiences, solve real problems, enhance marketing ROI, and help improve the profitability of a bank’s consumer loan portfolio.

They also allow a bank to use the advantage of its existing customer base to leverage exciting new technology to provide a superior experience that customers expect. Competing direct to consumer companies will have a hard time gaining scale compared to legacy banks who upgrade their data and digital capabilities and who partner with bank-friendly startups.

DCU and CUneXus to Launch Mobile Lending Platform that Delivers Pre-Approved, Personalized Loans

By Blog

Originally posted on PR Web here.

Westamerica and Digital Federal Credit Union

“We’re excited about this partnership that allows DCU to deliver a new level of mobility and convenience to their members.”

First phase of DCU’s mobile lending strategy allows it to offer “click to accept” loans to members based on each user’s location, actions, and credit

CUneXus Solutions, a leader in omni-channel, application-free lending technology, announced that it has partnered with DCU (Digital Federal Credit Union) to integrate the company’s cplXpress “click to accept” lending platform with DCU’s mobile lending platform. The partnership allows DCU to deliver personalized pre-approved loan offers to their members based on location, behavior, credit, and on DCU’s lending criteria for each member.

“The CUneXus solution will help us enhance our mobile lending strategy and support our long term vision that all members achieve their financial goals as well,” says DCU senior vice president of Retail Lending Craig Roy. “It gives us the ability to underwrite, close, and fund loans quickly and efficiently, as well as deliver an easy to use front end that members will love.”

DCU is the largest credit union based in New England, with nearly $7 billion in assets and more than 550,000 members nationwide.

CUneXus has also partnered with mobile personalization platform maker MobileRQ to add geo-targeting and contextual content delivery to DCU’s mobile lending solution. MobileRQ helps companies enable their mobile applications to serve highly personalized in-app content and messages to customers based on behavioral, time, and geographic triggers.

“We are proud to partner with CUneXus and their pioneering consumer lending solutions,” says MobileRQ CEO Tyler McKinley. “Data-driven, customer interactions within credit union and banks’ own mobile apps are the future of consumer lending. Combining the CUneXus on-demand lending solution with MobileRQ’s data-driven, mobile personalization platform enables financial institutions to drive multi-product revenue growth and to simply service their customers and members better.”

CUneXus’ comprehensive pre-screened lending technology cplXpress, combined with MobileRQ’s advanced mobile content and messaging capabilities, will allow DCU to tailor loan offers to their members based on their borrowing capacity and the credit union’s lending criteria, and then push the offers to members as they live, work and shop. For example, a member entering an auto dealership might receive a notification from DCU that he or she is already pre-approved for a $50,000 loan, with the terms outlined. Acceptance is now only a click away.

The result is more transparency, convenience and purchasing power for the member and an opportunity for the credit union to make its loan offer available before the member enters the showroom.

“DCU has grown to be the largest credit union in New England by offering great products and great service,” said Dave Buerger, co-founder, and CEO of CUneXus. “We’re excited about this partnership that allows DCU to deliver a new level of mobility and convenience to their members.”

DCU will also be the first to roll-out CUneXus’ latest product, AutoXpress. The result of a partnership between CUneXus and Edmunds.com, AutoXpress enables a complete end-to-end auto purchasing experience within the lender’s existing online and mobile banking platforms. Buyers can browse local dealership inventory in real-time, view pre-negotiated pricing, select from pre-approved loan options, review payment scenarios, and complete their vehicle purchase from anywhere with just a few clicks. Slated for general availability mid-summer, the company will demo this new solution at FinovateSpring, in San Jose on May 10th.

About CUneXus
Founded in 2007, CUneXus is focused on data-driven consumer lending solutions that help financial institutions maximize the potential of valuable customer relationships. Their pioneering technologies are at the forefront of the transition to a new era of responsible on-demand lending and borrowing. The company’s revolutionary cplXpress product suite is currently being utilized by dozens of financial institutions and has generated hundreds of millions of dollars in consumer loan volume. CUneXus has presented the cplXpress product line at Finovate, the Innotribe Startup Challenge, Bank Innovation, NetFinance Interactive, and more. The startup was also named one of just ten startups to watch on KPMG’s global report of “The 50 Best Fintech Innovators of 2014,” and selected to participate in the Silicon Valley’s renowned Plug & Play Fintech accelerator. Visit the CUneXus website for more information: https://cunexusonline.com/

About DCU
Digital Federal Credit Union, better known as DCU, is a not-for-profit financial cooperative owned by and operated for its members. DCU was chartered in October of 1979. Since then, DCU has been chosen as the credit union for more than 700 companies and organizations. DCU serves more than 550,000 members and their families in all 50 states. With headquarters in Marlborough, Massachusetts, DCU is the largest credit union headquartered in New England as measured by assets..

About MobileRQ
MobileRQ is a pioneer in contextual mobile marketing. Our mission is to help our enterprise customers drive loyalty and revenue by creating the most engaging and relevant mobile experiences for their customers and then instantly measure results. The RQ in MobileRQ stands for the Relevance Quotient. Many messages and in-app content will match a user’s context, but mobile devices only have a limited amount of screen real estate to display them. Using intelligent analysis of the content, the user, the user’s context, and previous in-app behavior, MobileRQ assigns a Relevance Quotient to the app content. The higher the RQ, the more likely the person will find this content to be relevant and engaging thereby delivering the most personalized experience for each user.
###

‘Sail Away’ Credit Union Campaign

By Blog
Originally posted by Storyboard.

If you’re like most people, you have a handful of credit and debit cards. So, short of your bank bribing you, what would make you reach for one card rather than the other?

Direct Mail
Mobile
Web

That was the challenge faced by South Carolina Federal Credit Union (SCFCU), which wanted to stand out in a crowded market. Read More

10 Commandments of Typography

By Blog

Originally posted by Fontyou.

Credit to Diane Pellotieri for illustrations, writer Valentine Proust, and Fontyou

HOMEPIC_10CommandmentsofTypo
Typography needs moral but mostly aesthetic instructions. Here is a list of 10 Commandments of Typography, rules to follow and tips to know to be a better person, or at least a better graphic designer!

1. You shall not deform

commandements-changemnts0
There are so many font families with several weights and styles, so why do you persist in bolding, condensing or small-capsing by hand, guys?

If you need something bold or light, choose a font with several weights, but please don’t just add an outline, you have 99,9% chance to damage the letter design (counterforms, serifs, endings etc).

commandements-changemnts02
Same things about widths. We know that designers use to change width manually to save some space (don’t play the innocent). Why don’t you choose a condensed or ultra condensed font? If you simply reduce the width, contrats between verticals and horizontals will be ugly. See it by yourself :

commandements-changemnts03

If you didn’t know, a real small-cap has a specific design, it’s not only an uppercase which have been reduced. If you shrink an uppercase to fit with the x-height, you’ll damage contrasts (so choose a font with small caps). See how it hurts :

commandements-changemnts04

2. No more than 2 fonts family you shall combine

commandements-changemnts05
Ideally, combine 2 typefaces, (maximum 3) and enjoy all their styles and variations to create contrasts.

For example, choose a serif font and a sans serif font and play with weights, italics, small caps etc.

Avoid to combine two fonts of the same family, and always remember that contrast is the key.

commandements-changemnts061

commandements-changemnts071

3. Too short or too long lines you shall avoid

commandements08

The lines lenght considerably influences the reading and the understanding of the meaning itself. Short lines will provoque a jerky reading while too long ones will strain your eyes.

Too short:

commandements-changemnts010

Too long:

commandements-changemnts09

A simple way to calculate the justification is to use the method of Robert Bringhurst, which multiplies the font size by 30. If the font size is 10px, multiply it by 30 gives you a justification for 300px or about 65 characters per line.

commandements0122

4. Good rules of composition you shall apply

commandements-changemnts011

The automatic justification of a text can generate some composition aberrations (unequal spaces between words, rhythm problems, unbalanced typographic color…).

So you’ll have to change some settings to get a better color of text.

Justification is about the letters distribution on the lines. You can adjust the space between words and between letters. Hyphenation is about if, how and when words can be hyphenated.

Here are some basic settings for optimized composition (Valentine’s habits, but everyone has its favorite ;). Ideally you have to adjust the settings for each font, depending on its width:

hyphenation

justification_illuss

Line breaks are essential too for a good composition.

commandements013

If you choose to compose a left justified text, you should shape your lines in order to have a beautiful text color. Avoid too short lines and provoque line breaks. Be aware of widows and orphans (see definitions below).

commandements0121

5. Of fake friends you shall beware

commandements-changemnts015apostrophe

The apostrophe should not be confused with the prime symbol (minute). You can get the “real apostrophe” with [Alt Shift 4].

The double quote mark should not be confused with the double prime (second). You can get “english” quote marks with [Alt 3] and [Alt Shift 3]. And «french» quote marks with [Alt 7] and [Alt Shift 7].

As for the ellipsis, you can get it with [Alt .], and not “dot dot dot”!

There are also keyboard shortcuts for œ [Alt o] and æ [Alt a].

raccourcis_claviers

6. Accents on uppercases you shall put

commandements-changemnts017

We already talked about this here, but the topic is so important that it needs to be part of the top 10 of Type Commandments. Actually no accents on uppercases, it’s like … no accents on lowercases. We don’t need metaphor, we need comprehension!

commandements-changemnts018

7. Abbreviations you shall learn

commandements-changemnts019

Abbreviations are cute little and practical things to know. Here is a table that shows some English and French practical abbreviations. There are of course many others, that I invite you to learn by heart asap :).

commandements020

And MM. is not for Mickey Mouse but for Messieurs (and so M. for Monsieur).

8. Spaces you shall respect

commandements-changemnts021

In French, there is a thin space (espace fine insécable) before every punctuation composed of 2 signs

(?!; etc).

commandements-changemnts022

Good to know too:

com23

In English, there are no spaces before punctuation. Easy!

9. Fonts you shall respect

com26

Fonts are like baby animals, rare pearls and protected natural species, you must take care of them and show them some r-e-s-p-e-c-t. There are people in the world who spend their days (and often their nights, week-ends, family holidays…) to think, draw, and make fonts. Think of them, respect their work (and lives). And there are fonts on the world wide web that you can buy or get for free, licenses are the keys of possession. Fonts are precious, but not in a Gollum way.

10. This fonts you shall never use

commandements-changemnts025

This is not an order, this is just a best friend advice!

Illustrations by Diane Pellotieri.