2017 Diamond Award Winners Honored at CUNA Council Conference

By CUNA Councils04.04.2017

BECU was awarded the Diamond Best of Show Award – the highest honor in the CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council’s Diamond Awards competition – during the Council’s 24th annual conference, March 29-April 1 in San Antonio, Texas.

This year’s Diamond Awards competition received 1,147 entries. Six credit unions won Best of Show Awards, 59 won Category’s Best Awards and 264 won Diamond Awards.

Diamond Best of Show Award: BECU in Tukwila, Washington was honored for their Early Saver video. BECU created the Early Saver, which is meant to educate youth on the importance of responsible financial habits. Early Saver wants to get children under the age of 17 in the habit of saving money early. They go about doing this through videos shared on social media, and the incentive that they will receive a premium interest rate of 6.17% APY on the first $500 deposited. Through both, they are hoping parents will open the Early Saver accounts for their children. The target demographic is parents with children under the age of 17 and kids between the ages of 6-12 years.

Other 2017 Best of Show honorees included:

Color Award for Brilliant Use of Art: Rocky Mountain CU in Helena, Montana, was awarded the Color Award for Brilliant Use of Art for their GEAR Loan Campaign. Rocky Mountain created a GEAR Loan, which was specifically targeted to members who would be purchasing outdoor gear. This could be college students, families and young professions who may want to purchase new gear, or update the outdoor gear they already own. Rocky Mountain spoke with members and realized there was a large untapped market of individuals who would find it useful to take out a loan to obtain the gear they wanted faster. The marketing messages imagery and focus shifted with the season to better fit the consumer need. The credit union had set a marketing goal of $1,055,000 to be made in six months. At the completion of the campaign, they made $1,708,901.02, which is 61.9% above their marketing goal.

Cut Award for Most Edgy: Listerhill CU in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, won for their Member or Trade Publication, SET Magazine. Listerhill created SET Magazine, which engages the younger generation in the community with a magazine written by fellow youth. The magazine is designed to engage youth, advocate for Listerhill and to join. Each month meetings are held to allow young people to express themselves, develop skills, build their portfolio and publish their work. Some of the categories include lifestyle, finance, technology and community. The credit union can communicate the value of their products and positively reinforce their brand and mission. In addition, it gives them opportunities to promote engaging contests to increase their social and online presence. This is distributed monthly to over 160 locations across Alabama and Tennessee. The main people they are hoping to reach would be local youth ranging from 15 – 29 years of age.

Clarity Award for Most Sentimental: BECU in Tukwila, Washington, won for their Sue Bird's Surprise Campaign. BECU created Sue Bird’s Surprise, which was a social content campaign highlighting the partnership with local WNBA Team, Seattle Storm. This campaign was designed to promote the BECU’s Early Savers program which promoted kids learning about saving money, spending responsibly and how interest rates work. The social content included videos, photos, GIFs and blog posts that focused on developing fundamental skills of succeeding in sports and adopting sound financial habits. The credit union partnered with Seattle Storm to help coach a youth team named The Lady Style. With this partnership, a three episode video series was created along with multi-media blog posts to show the experience and impact on the young female players. Each video showed unique footage ranging from being told they were chosen, the impact the personalized coaching made and how this positively impacted the young girl’s experience. In addition, twenty children were chosen to be Honorary Team Captains for games throughout Seattle Storm’s season. The goals of BECU were to earn 50,000 video views, 100 percent increase in post engagement and 4,109 account openings. They were able to surpass their goals by obtaining 200% increase in Facebook page likes, 195,00 plus video views, 651% increase in post engagement and 4,454 new accounts opened.

Carat Award for Greatest Impact: Georgia United CU in Duluth, Georgia, won for their School Crashers 2016 Campaign. Georgia United created Georgia United School Crashers 2016, which is an annual event that gives local schools a makeover. There is one grand prize winner along with deserving runner ups. The process includes nominating a deserving school, have each go through a judging process where the list is narrowed down to 20 finalists. From there, those schools are informed they are finalists and judging continues and breaks down to the main winner and runner ups. Georgia United works with various media partners and applies for donations to assist with the overall process. This event is known state wide, which reinforces the credit union’s commitment to supporting education. The main group of people this event is targeting is educators.

Best Use of Humor Award: Elevations CU in Boulder, Colorado, won for their Community Egg Lending video. To tell the lighter side of Elevations’ story, and to leverage their long history of fun, engaging videos that Elevations promotes through social media, they launched a new episodic video series called “Adventures in Localism”. The first video was called “Hey, Neighbor”, the second was “Community Egg Lending” and the series, which features their front line staff in humorous fictional situations (think “The Office” in a bank setting), emphasizes the value of localism and community. These videos were wildly successful with members and staff alike and the Egg Lending video had more than 100,000 (and counting) views on Facebook and YouTube, their most popular video ever.

“The credit union industry has no shortage of marketing and business development talent, but, as the name of the prize suggests, these professionals shine the brightest,” said Amber Scott, Chair of the CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council’s Diamond Awards Committee and VP Marketing & Communications at 1st MidAmerica CU. “Bold, inventive and fearless in the face of uncertainty, the 2017 Diamond Award winners inspire us to aim higher and try new approaches.”

The Diamond Awards, representing the pinnacle of credit union marketing and business development, honor credit unions in 30 categories, ranging from direct mail to website marketing to public relations to social media. Judges evaluated entries based on strategy, design, production, creative concept, copy, communication and results.

A complete list of award winners is available online at www.cunacouncils.org/awards.

About CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council

The CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council is a member-led community of marketing and business development professionals dedicated to providing relevant resources and tools essential for success to its members. The CUNA Marketing and Business Development Council is one of seven CUNA Councils, a network of thousands of credit union professionals nationwide. For more information, visit www.cunacouncils.org.

About CUNA Councils

The CUNA Councils are member-led organizations dedicated to connecting passionate people, great ideas, original content and relevant resources to find solutions and inspire achievement through the power of peer collaboration. The CUNA Councils serve thousands of members nationwide in seven areas of credit unions including CEO; lending; marketing and business development; finance and accounting; human resources and organizational development; technology; and operations, sales and service. For more information, visit www.cunacouncils.org.

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