Catering to the Hispanic consumer requires an appreciation of the many nuances that exist inside this fast-growing market. When broken into its many unique segments, the Hispanic market becomes fairly complex. This can be intimidating for short-staffed or resource-challenged financial institutions looking to adapt their products, services and operations to the service of this crucial demographic.
Part of the draw to serving Hispanic consumers – particularly for credit unions who struggle with aging memberships – is the unmatched youth of the U.S. Hispanic market. For this reason, targeting “second-generation” or children of Hispanic immigrants, is a smart strategy for credit union leaders who want to introduce their cooperative to the next generation of financial-service consumers. Beyond this target market’s youth, second-generation Hispanics generally have higher incomes, more degrees and own more homes, making them attractive financial clients.
Thankfully, Pew Research had studied this segment of the Hispanic market extensively and has recently published its findings in a new report, “Second-Generation Americans: A Portrait of the Adult Children of Immigrants.” Jam-packed with intell on this segment, the report includes several interesting guideposts for credit unions that are right now mapping out their Hispanic-outreach strategies. Chief among them are that second-generation Hispanics:
Credit union leaders should keep in mind that serving first-generation Hispanics can help credit unions attract the coveted second-generation Hispanics. The U.S. Census reveals that the more than 18 million foreign-born Hispanic immigrants living in the U.S. have a median age of 39 years old. These are the hard-working parents of these relatively young second-generation children. Courting the first generation will have a residual effect of creating trust and loyalty with the second generation of Hispanics.
Pew’s research includes findings on immigrant children from other influential minority groups, and it contains an extremely interesting set of information. As you and your teams sit down to strategize your outreach, be sure to take a read.Leave a comment
Many credit unions leaders know – either in their gut or in their strategic vision – that the Hispanic community will play a key role in the growth of their cooperative. Yet, they are challenged to get a true, focused and action-oriented initiative off the ground. Often this is because they aren’t confident they understand where they are at on the continuum of service to this crucial consumer segment.
That was exactly the trouble facing Guardian Credit Union, based in Milwaukee. The leadership understood how important increasing its Hispanic membership would become in the credit union’s near future, yet it needed a spark to ignite the passion needed from staff.
Enter the Hispanic Membership Analysis (HMA). Completed for Guardian CU by Coopera staff, the HMA allowed Guardian leadership to discover pertinent information about its members. The results of the analysis ultimately led to the development of Guardian’s Hispanic growth strategies to increase membership, revenue and loan volume.
“I believe that the HMA was the propellant that I needed to push this initiative forward,” said Christopher Plautz, Guardian CU’s VP of Strategic Research and Development. “It allowed my board to really engage in the details, to, in a concrete way, visualize the audience, the needs for this population and the opportunity for our credit union.”
Each HMA provides a picture of a credit union’s total membership, establishing a baseline of the Hispanics being served and their impact to the cooperative’s bottom line. It shows:
The HMA could be just the thing your credit union needs to transform gut instinct into action. Get in touch if we can tell you more.Leave a comment
Warren Morrow: July 26, 1977 – February 15, 2012
Born to an American father and Mexican mother in Mexico City, Coopera Founder Warren Morrow’s identity and love for his Latino community was shaped in part by his experiences as a young person assimilating into the U.S. culture; specifically by the lasting impression left on him as he watched his mother struggle in her transition to American life.
On February 15, 2012, Warren’s family, friends, coworkers, the credit union movement and the Latino community suffered an inexplicable tragedy when Warren passed away at the age of 34. As we remember the passing of Warren on this tragic date, there will be much sadness and disbelief relived by the many people Warren touched, but there will also be many things to reflect on and be thankful for as we look back on his immense impact.
Growing up, Warren came upon credit unions unintentionally, as many of us do. A Tucson-based credit union helped him and his father obtain a car loan when he was starting college. The loan paid for the car he would drive from Arizona to Iowa as he started attending Grinnell College.
In his 34 years, Warren was nothing short of amazing. He accomplished what many of us only dream of. Not only was Warren the founder and CEO of Coopera, he was a visionary leader with a selfless heart.
When Coopera was started, the concept was ahead of its time in the credit union industry; it was a progressive idea coming from progressive leaders in the state of Iowa. While Iowa isn’t typically thought of as a Hispanic mecca, it continues to be a gateway for Hispanic immigrants, similar to other Midwest states. Today, Coopera continues to pursue its mission of partnering with people, businesses and communities for new economic opportunity by helping credit unions across the nation serve the Latino community as an opportunity for growth.
Our late founder would be thrilled to witness Coopera’s growth, adding 12 new clients in as many months last year. He’d be inspired to see us chasing down our strategic objectives, knocking down hurdles and pursuing his vision with gusto. And he’d be humbled to know we have been joined in our mission by Gustavo Grüber as Coopera Vice President. I see many similarities between Gustavo and Warren, as both exude warmth, fire and a contagious “can do” spirit.
Warren was a proponent and a believer in working together for a common good. He catalyzed a spark within the credit union industry. He brought awareness and created momentum around the Hispanic market being a solution to the growth challenges of credit unions.
Warren once said, “Working to demonstrate the value of underserved and disenfranchised communities is a lifelong mission that will always motivate me.” His passion for serving the community certainly helped reinvigorate the unique credit union philosophy of ‘people helping people,’ and his work has left an indelible mark on the entire credit union movement.Leave a comment
Study after study indicates Hispanic consumers make up one of the most tech-savvy demographics in the U.S. A new survey goes a step further, however, indicating that Hispanic consumers’ comfort with technology may very well extend to mobile banking. The survey, conducted by the Federal Reserve, indicates that even though Hispanics make up 13 percent of all mobile phone users, they represent 17 percent of those using mobile banking.
Naturally, credit unions are particularly interested in this as they look to introduce – or in some cases, expand – services like mobile banking and digital wallets.
Although still in their infancy, mobile-payments services appear to be particularly appealing to this market. Of those who claimed frequent use of mobile-payment services, more than 20 percent identified themselves as Hispanic. When you consider that three-quarters of those identified by the Fed survey as mobile payment users were younger than 44, a clear picture of the mobile payments “early adopter” comes into focus.
Credit unions must remember, however, that service to the Hispanic market goes beyond simply making available a popular or emerging product. As your credit union rolls out mobile banking and payment services, understand that second generation Hispanics, although raised in the U.S. and fluent in the national language, still have unique needs and wants, driven by a deep connection to their culture. You must first understand and embrace this culture before you can truly win members from among this important and influential community.Leave a comment