5 Ideas for Driving Credit Union Membership in 2023

By: Web Finance Direct

For credit unions, members are everything. From reduced risk exposure to an expanded impact on the community, the more diverse a credit union’s customer base is, the better its ability to see increased deposits and offer more loans will become. As a result, it is important to make sure your credit union is striving for new ways to find members while also keeping existing ones happy.


5 Ideas to Drive Credit Union Membership

Step One: Expand Marketing Efforts

To differentiate your credit union from your competitors, high-quality and intentional marketing is a great first step. At the end of the day, it is important to educate potential members about your offering. So, what are some of the major benefits of marketing for credit unions?

Credit Union Ad Examples

An example of a unique ad concept from Elevations Credit Union.

Top Benefits for Marketing Your Credit Union

Higher Awareness

The first benefit of marketing for credit unions is a raised level of awareness among potential members on the lookout for a new financial institution to join. They may not be familiar with your credit union. Effective marketing also helps to build awareness about credit unions as an alternative to traditional banks, highlighting unique advantages such as lower fees, better interest rates, and a focus on member service.

Better Trust

Think back to the last time you saw a commercial, paper advertisement, or social media post that stuck with you. It gave you a better picture of the business, right? In the financial sector, trust and credibility are essential for attracting and retaining members. Marketing for credit unions that emphasizes transparency, financial education, and community involvement can help credit unions establish themselves as trusted financial partners.

Better Promotion of Products, Services, & More

Credit unions need to effectively promote their products and services to both existing and potential members. Marketing for credit unions helps them to inform people about new offerings, special promotions, or changes to existing services, ensuring they are aware of and take advantage of the credit union’s full range of financial solutions.

Additionally, your marketing initiatives may shed light on your impact on the surrounding area, giving individuals more context into how your institution aims to better the community.

Step Two: Be Involved in the Community

The next idea to drive credit union membership is through community involvement. Not only is community engagement important for credit union members, but it can also be a major selling point for recruiting new employees too.

While supporting the local economy and strengthening the bonds with members, credit unions may also build partnerships with local businesses, non-profit organizations, and government agencies. These partnerships can lead to mutually beneficial collaborations such as joint marketing efforts, shared resources, or co-sponsored events, which can enhance the credit union’s reach and impact within the community.

Similar to marketing, community engagement also helps credit unions to build trustworthiness. Participating in initiatives, such as financial education programs, sponsorships, and charitable giving, demonstrates the credit union’s genuine interest in the welfare of the community.

Step Three: Harness the Potential of Indirect Lending

If you’re asking yourself how to grow membership at your credit union, the answer may lie with indirect lending. For credit unions, this type of lending can open up access to a wider range of applicants across multiple industries.

At Web Finance Direct, we specialize in helping credit unions and banks connect with qualified applicants. We do the hard work—including all administrative and closing tasks associated with loans—so you have more time to focus on giving your new members a positive experience. 


indirect lending credit union process


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Step Four: Invest in Tech

Whether through mobile applications, payment processing software, or even your website, convenience is king these days. Another idea for driving credit union membership is through an investment in up-to-date technology. By leveraging better technology and offering a user-friendly experience, credit unions can attract new members by meeting the increasing demand for ease of use, accessibility, and security.

The right technology can also be cost-saving. An advanced mobile app, for example, can reduce the need for in-person transactions at branches, helping credit unions save on operational costs. This, in turn, enables credit unions to offer more competitive rates and fees.

As we head further into 2023, the power of digital technology will surely continue to grow, especially in the financial sector.

Step Five: Incentivize Referrals

The final—and some may argue most important—idea for driving credit union membership is to provide current members with incentives for referrals. A compelling referral bonus, whether in cash or another reward, may drive them to bring friends and family along, increasing your overall membership and reach within the community.

Referral programs could be created to seamlessly track and measure success, allowing credit unions to assess the effectiveness of their campaigns, adjust their strategies, and optimize their efforts. Additionally, referral incentives could prove to be more cost-friendly than wider-facing marketing campaigns, as credit unions will only need to pay out when they finalize a new member.

To learn more about Web Finance Direct and how we can help your credit union grow your business, contact us to get in touch with our team of experts. You can also check out our blog to read up on the top trends in the financial world.

Credit Union Membership Growth FAQs

How do you attract people to join your credit union?

There are many ideas for driving credit union membership growth. Start with the right marketing, an investment in convenient technology, and even indirect lending with Web Finance Direct.

What are some unique ideas for credit union membership drives?

Apart from referral incentives, credit unions can turn to community events, whether by hosting or sponsoring, to get their brand in front of the eyes of potential members.

How can credit unions measure the success of their membership drives?

It depends on what the credit union’s ultimate goal is. You could measure success based on how many new members you attract or even how many people attend the event.

How can credit unions encourage current members to attend events?

The best way is to incentivize their attendance. Referral bonuses, such as cash or event tickets, for bringing friends and family to sign up can be effective.

What should credit unions include in their membership drive marketing materials?

The most important marketing for credit unions would give new members more information about the credit union, including its impact on the community, rates, special offers, and more.