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  • 5 Financial Preferences of Multicultural Consumers

    Posted by on June 4, 2018

    Recent research by CUNA Mutual Group’s TruStage reveals interesting insights about the unique makeup and preferences of Hispanics and other multicultural consumer groups. Below are some of the key findings from the What Matters Now research along with what they mean for credit unions seeking to establish more meaningful relationships with multicultural consumers.

    Multicultural consumers have significant buying power.

    Over the past five years, multicultural consumer groups have accounted for 100 percent of U.S. population growth and 61 percent of credit union growth. The annual spending growth rate for Hispanics is 4.1 percent, compared to 1.4 percent for Whites.

    What it means for credit unions: Credit unions desiring to grow their memberships, assets and loan balances should place a strategic focus on their outreach efforts to Hispanics and other multicultural consumer groups.

    Hispanic appreciation for apps over-indexes other groups.

    Hispanic consumers are almost two times more likely than Whites to research financial products and services using mobile apps. Additionally, 17 percent of Hispanics reported applying for financial accounts and products through an app, compared to only 9 percent of Whites.

    What it means for credit unions: To be relevant to Hispanic and other multicultural consumers, credit unions should be investing in mobile strategies. These cooperatives should ensure their mobile apps have a Spanish language option and the experiences are culturally relevant to Hispanic consumers.

    Business loans are a desired product.

    Hispanics are nine times more likely than Whites to take out a small business loan in the next five years.

    What it means for credit unions: Invest in products and resources to help Hispanic entrepreneurs, such as small business-friendly loans, microloans and small-business financial education. Also, consider partnering with organizations that offer small business assistance, such as local Hispanic chambers of commerce and small business incubators.

    Hispanics prioritize ease of use.

    Twenty-three percent of Hispanics look for convenience in financial products and services, even if it means higher rates or fees, compared to only 9 percent of Whites. Flexible payment schedules and speed of lending are also more important to Hispanics than other groups.

    What it means for credit unions: No two consumers are exactly alike. Providing a range of product options and fee structures will help you be relevant to a wider range of consumer segments. Offering instant online loan approvals is one way to meet a need for many Hispanic consumers.

    Hispanic consumers tend to worry about finances.

    Every expense category studied by CUNA Mutual causes Hispanic consumers concern — sometimes up to 20 percent more than other consumer groups. At the same time, Hispanics tend to have a stronger sense of generosity and community than other consumer groups.

    What it means for credit unions: Think about ways to help relieve concerns for Hispanic consumers through relevant financial education and resources. Also, be sure to educate local consumers on the credit union philosophy of “people helping people,” and share stories of how your credit union and members are improving the lives of individuals and families in your community.

    As you apply these findings to your credit union’s Hispanic outreach strategies, be careful not to over-simplify the data. “When examining the research findings, it’s important to remember a person is made up of many unique cultural aspects,” said Opal Tomashevska, manager, multicultural business strategy, CUNA Mutual Group. “Be careful not to over-generalize or create stereotypes from this information and apply it to all members of a certain group. The data shows trends and significant differences but does not attempt to speak for every individual.”

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    Whirlwind Awareness Tour at CUNA’s GAC

    Posted by on March 21, 2017

    We’re fresh off another exhilarating CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference. It was a terrific conference with what I believe was record attendance! While in the nation’s capital for the event, we were lucky enough to chat with several credit union leaders about the value and importance of serving the Hispanic financial consumer.

    As part of our whirlwind awareness tour, I got the chance to talk with CU Broadcast host Mike Lawson. We discussed quite a few things, including growth of the Hispanic population in places people may not expect. Credit unions in the Midwest, for example, are finding an explosion of the multi-faceted Hispanic communities in their areas to be a clear call to action.

    Take a listen to the conversation at CUBroadcast.com and download our white paper, “Hispanic Growth Strategies Not Just for ‘Gateway States’ Anymore.” Then, get in touch. I’d love to hear your impressions, as well as where your credit union is on its own path to better serving this influential and growing group of community members.

     

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    Think You Know the Hottest Consumer Market?

    Posted by on April 6, 2015

    The hottest market for credit unions just keeps heating up. Hispanics in America, both U.S. born and immigrant, are on the radar of more credit union CEOs, CMOs and board presidents than ever before. And rightly so. Just look at what’s happening with this critical consumer segment:



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    Appealing to the Children of Immigrants

    Posted by on February 26, 2013

    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:

    • place more importance than does the general public on hard work and career success
    • more likely to say their standard of living is higher than that of their parents
    • think of themselves as a “typical American”
    • have friends and spouses outside their ethnic or racial group

    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.

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    Hispanic Market is Ready for Mobile Banking, Payments

    Posted by on February 12, 2013

    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.

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