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Connexus : Issue 42
HOLIDAY COAST CREDIT UNION Marketing shi The $475 million Holiday Coast Credit Union (HCCU), based in Wauchope, NSW, is in the middle of a major marketing shift away from traditional media towards social media and direct marketing. Chief executive Neville Parsons says HCCU has traditionally relied on TV and radio to reach residents on the Holiday Coast and in the Hunter Valley. "Up to this year we were a major sponsor of online community ser vice announcements on local radio," he says. “But, with the rationalisation of radio stations, a lot of the opportunity to engage locally has been lost. I don’t think they've quite got it that rural communities and regional communities are very parochial.” Hence the transition to other forms of marketing. "We recently launched what we call the 'community engagement team' -- a group of younger staff with the challenge of supporting large, selected payroll groups and community groups in our area where we're taking the credit union to them face-to-face. I see the future being more about engaging far closer to our community and being there as support, but also being there to promote the credit union.” Strong ties with the community are reinforced in other ways too. By May, HCCU's community partnership grants program will have given back more than $1 million to community groups since it was formalised in 2005. Employees are encouraged to forge connections in the community through HCCU's offer to pay their membership fees if they join a ser vice club such as Rotary. To ensure that remuneration isn't a barrier, particularly when HCCU recruits senior and specialised staff, the organisation has a longstanding policy of adhering to the Hay remuneration scales for the fnance industry. In 2009 it engaged Dr Ian Brooks as a customer care adviser to make sure that "when a customer contacts us, we've actually delivered exactly what they've required, and then some”. Staff behaviour, adds Parsons, is now measured against an internal profle of the kind of staff member required to manage that sort of engagement with the customer. The Holiday Coast Credit Union team. www.abacus.org.au 23