Credit union marketing and branding insights from Dr. Seuss

first_img 23SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Mark Arnold Mark Arnold is an acclaimed speaker, brand expert and strategic planner helping businesses such as credit unions and banks achieve their goals with strategic marketing insights and energized training. Mark … Web: Details March of this year marks the 110th birthday of beloved children’s author Dr. Seuss (also known as Theodor Seuss Geisel). Dr. Seuss was a prolific author, penning nearly fifty children’s books. These books, such as Green Eggs and Ham, The Lorax and How the Grinch Stole Christmas! are now perennial favorites of both children and adults.Known for imaginative character names and outlandish rhyming, Dr. Seuss cornered the market on entertaining children with books replete with colorful illustrations and deeper messaging. Do some of these messages apply to the greater world of marketing and branding? Consider a few of the examples below.“The more that you read, the more things that you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” This line from I Can Read with My Eyes Shut! ought to be prominently displayed on the desk or wall of every marketing and branding professional. At the speed with which the economy and technology moves, no one can afford to remain complacent with the knowledge that he or she picked up right out of college or early in their career. Marketing professionals must avail themselves of opportunities to learn and grow, regardless of their age. Ways to do this include reading up on the latest business books, blogs and social media platforms — as well as following the musings of thought leaders such as Michael Hyatt, Michael Hudson and Jeffry Pilcher.“Today you are you, that is truer that true. There is no one alive who is youer than you.” From Happy Birthday to You!, This Dr. Seuss quote speaks directly to the importance of unique branding amongst credit unions. Far too often credit unions try to position themselves on the same old tired things, such as member service, friendliness and product offerings. Guess what? Every single credit union in the history of the world is absolutely convinced that they have great member service, are friendly and offer every product or service a member could need or want. Unfortunately, that’s often far from the case. Credit unions, to differentiate themselves in a hyper-competitive environment, must dig deep and find the one thing that truly sets them apart from the competition. Maybe you’re lucky and you actually are one of the ones who can truly claim to have exceptionally friendly service. More than likely — however — you’re going to have to dig deeper than that. Maybe its’s your electronic/digital product offerings. Maybe it’s the speed at which you turn around loan decisions. Heck, maybe it’s how clean your lobby bathrooms are. The point is – your credit union must be true to itself. Trying to copy the competition and be everything to everyone is a recipe for disaster.“Say! I do like green eggs and ham! I do! I like them, Sam-I-am! And I would eat them in a boat! And I would eat them with a goat. And I will eat them in the rain. And in the dark. And on a train. And in a car. And in a tree. They are so good so good you see!” Up to this point in the classic Green Eggs and Ham, Sam-I-am, the protagonist, has mercilessly hounded the unnamed second character about trying green eggs and ham. He berates him, he cajoles him, he asks him to try them in all sorts of places and with all sorts of characters. All to no avail. Eventually, however, the unnamed character breaks down and tries the green eggs and ham, which he finds delicious. What we learn from this line is that if your credit union actually offers a superior product or service, people will not only eventually try it but will become viral marketers of it for you. It took the Sam-I-am character a great deal of time to reach his target audience (and his browbeating methods of doing so are questionable in the credit union world) but eventually, he did get his man. And when that unnamed character actually tried the green eggs and ham and found that he enjoyed them, he was more than happy to eat them in a boat, with a goat, in the rain, in the dark, on a train, and a car and in a tree (and also with a fox and a mouse. It makes you wonder, ‘what did the fox say?’). In other words, he was ready and willing to share the good news about this terrific new dish with his friends and family. This type of marketing, invaluable to the culinary sales efforts of Sam-I-am, is just as important to your credit union. If you offer a genuinely superior product or service to your members, eventually they will pick up on that, use it, love it and share it with their friends and family.Sampling just a few books and lines out of the repertoire of Dr. Seuss is a daunting task. However, by examining just a few of the more poignant ones that apply more directly the marketing and branding, credit unions can learn some important lessons about who they are and how they interact with people. In the words of Oh, the Places You’ll Go!“You’re off to Great Places!Today is your day!Your mountain is waiting,So… get on your way!”last_img read more