Wow, Talk About Member Experience!

Earlier this year, I bought a Volkswagen. We've been a Honda family for the past decade. I've driven a Honda Prelude and an Acura RSX and my wife has had a Honda Civic and Honda CR-V. However, loading two kids into a two-door sports car is just not that practical, so I decided it was time to grow up and get a sedan. I also wanted to branch out and try a different brand. After test driving a bunch of cars, I decided on a Jetta TDI. It's a turbo diesel that doesn't make me feel too much like an old man plus it gets about a thousand kilometers per fill up. 

Right from the initial test drive to the after-sales care, the service from my local dealership has been first class. Our Honda buying experiences were good too, but the total VW experience has been better and more personalized. Once I registered my car online, I've been getting lots of great email communication about my new car. I feel like I am a member of the Volkswagen tribe now.

About a month ago, I received an email invitation to attend an event called the Volkswagen Freedriving Tour. I was intrigued and decided to go. Watch the video to get a sense of what it's all about.

Series of emails including an invite, a confirmation and then a follow-up after the event.

Series of emails including an invite, a confirmation and then a follow-up after the event.

The event took place at a small airport not far from home. When we arrived, there was a personalized lanyard with a custom QR code ready for me. Throughout the exhibit, there were a bunch of iPod Touch scanning stations. Even the driving coach scanned my lanyard. Inside the car, they were using a mounted iPad to film the experience. All of the scanning was used to generate a custom webpage with my Freedriving experience. Finally, a compelling use case for QR codes!

If you want to see my mad driving skills, visit my page and watch the video. Three things:

  1. I thought my top speed was way higher than 84 km/h
  2. I realize that I have a very serious driving face
  3. It felt way more exhilarating than it appears
Personalized webpage generated after my driving experience.

Personalized webpage generated after my driving experience.

This was a very slick, highly branded, very personalized experience. I know it's just savvy marketing, but I don't care, I loved it and it really made me feel like I am part of an exclusive club.

This is obviously an international car manufacturer with deep pockets, but there are many things to take from this and apply to your credit union. Exclusive member appreciation events are powerful and can bring meaning to membership. The trick is to create a memorable experience with personalized touches. Our Young & Free credit unions have held a number of member-only events – everything from private concerts to bowling events – and the feedback has been really great.

What are you doing to make your members feel like they belong to a exclusive club?

Tim