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Is the UPS Guy Your Competition?

One of my favorite CU blogs is Modern Marketing, written by Denise Wymore. Denise’s latest post deals with old marketing versus modern marketing.   

Denise and Andy Goodman, one of my favorite cause communicators, must be writing in parallel universes lately. Goodman assists cause communicators in non-profit agencies across the country. Each month, I look forward to getting my consistently awesome copy of Andy’s newsletter Free Range Thinking.  The November edition was an eye-popper, and relates well to Denise’s post.

Andy’s overall point was that everyone who provides a service to consumers and businesses (or in our case members and potential members) is a competitor. 

The businesses and people who provide the best customer service go to the front of the line, and everyone else is, well, everyone else.

A couple of central paragraphs from Andy’s message ….

“Right now, your cause is battling for share of mind, and your opposition is not just other nonprofits in your field, nor is it limited to good causes in general. It’s everyone who’s competing for the public’s attention. And today’s information-saturated public doesn’t have time to differentiate among the competitors or to cut special breaks for good causes just because you have less money to spend. You may be trading in ideas, but you still get lumped together with all the other vendors, just like my former self and the UPS guy.    

“So in those rare moments when you do have someone’s attention — whether they’re reading your direct mail, scanning your web site, or just talking to one of your canvassers — you have to make the most of that opportunity. At the very least, you have to meet the standards set by other web sites, direct mail and other face-to-face communicators. Too often we’re not, and that’s the problem.”  

Andy wraps it up by saying (and I think this definitely applies to many credit unions) … “How you look in print and on the web, how you answer the phone and speak in public, even how you dress and observe such niceties as showing up on time — it all says something about about your organization and your cause.”

Credit unions instinctively view banks as the competition (and other credit unions, in reality), but Andy’s point is that earning share of mind is really about your service culture and how it compares to everyone else. So what do you think – is credit union competition limited to just the Bank of Massive Fee Income Opportunity, or is it Nordstrom’s, Apple and the UPS guy as well?  

To read Andy’s newsletter article, titled Sometimes, It Is About Us, please click here.


2 Responses

  1. Hey Communicator,

    Thanks for the plug. It’s an honor to be compared to Andy.

  2. I agree with the idea that we’re competing for mind market share. It’s kind of like being a good neighbor too. You want to promote a good image for the benefit of people who don’t even know you or haven’t been introduced to you yet. Recently when a neighbor of mine showed incredibly poor judgment and brandished his firearm to scare off a little dog in the neighborhood it spoke volumes to me about him! (As far as I know everyone on my street is armed.)

    We should definitely poise ourselves to take advantage of every opportunity that arises. We need to be who we are at all times, not just when we’re trying to impress someone.

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