Thing 19 of 30: Attract the next generation of credit union members

September is 30 things I would implement or consider implementing at my credit union if I was a credit union leader.

Thing 19: Attract the next generation of credit union members

You knew this had to be one of my 30 things! As you know, I've been yammering away (on my blog, at conferences and in magazine articles) about the need to attract new Generation Y members.

It's no secret that the median age of a North American is 35 and the median age of a credit union member is 47. This 12-year gap is a serious issue that needs to be attacked head-on or credit unions will find themselves going the way of the record stores (remember them?) and the daily newspaper publishers. Want more scary stats, check out one of my previous posts.

I am happy to say that the message is starting to get through. Thanks to heavyweights CUNA, Callahan & Associates, the Filene Research Institute, PSCU Financial Services and Brass Media, broader attention has been cast on this industry-wide issue.

In addition to our four active Young & Free programs, there are quite a few dedicated credit union Gen Y marketing initiatives up and running. This is a good start and it gets me excited to see that a number of credit unions are really taking this issue seriously. However, the 25 to 30 active initiatives that I follow are just scratching the surface. There are 9,000 credit unions in North America and only about 0.3% have committed to doing something. Yikes!

If I was a credit union leader I would make attracting the next generation of credit union members a major priority and I would plan to do something about it in 2010.

Tim