Social Media Spotlight … Man, Those Canadians Have Got It Workin’!

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The Partnership Symposium wrapped up last week in Indianapolis, and what a show it was! The folks at Forum Solutions (the Forum CUSO) and Trabian combined to produce a conference spotlighting current innovators and future trends in credit unions.

The contingent of credit union folks from Canada really grabbed a lot of attention during the symposium. Lydia Johnson of Vancity Credit Union did a terrific presentation on the credit union’s Statement of Values and Commitments, and how this document colors all the business decisions they make. Far from empty rhetoric … the values and commitments document shapes not only what products and services Vancity will offer … but also who they are willing to serve and do business with. (In other words … they say no to people and organizations that do not line up with Vancity’s values statement.)

Tim McAlpine of Currency Marketing also delivered the goods in his presentation. Tim announced a campaign he helped develop with Alberta’s Common Wealth CU. Dubbed Young & Free, the campaign is designed to promote Common Wealth’s free checking product while giving young people 19-25 a chance to get hired as a Common Wealth employee/blogger/vlogger/social gadfly for a year. (Edit to add: there’s excellent coverage on Tim and Y&F at the CUES Nexus blog, and at Currency’s CU Brand blog.)

Common Wealth CEO Jeff Mulligan is a blogging and vlogging actively on the site, and its clear from this video post that he is not afraid to poke fun at himself.

The Young & Free blogsite has the distinguishing characteristic of actually giving young people a voice. Kudos to Common Wealth, Tim and Currency for designing a campaign that will do its talking by listening. (And for a young adult audience, I have to believe that’s very refreshing.) I look forward to keeping up with this campaign!

There’s an old joke that says Canada is famous for cold fronts, hockey players and not much else. But the Partnership Symposium made it clear that Canada is exporting some real food for thought in the credit union industry.

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3 Responses

  1. What about curling? That was a great Symposium, there is nothing better than American hospitality!

  2. Gene – it was great to meet you last week! I really appreciate your take on small credit unions … and curling.

  3. Thanks for the kind words! I didn’t find this post until now. Y&F is going strong – the applications have been amazing. Top 3 coming next week!

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