The Mobile Branch

Banking is about relationships, and no one in banking is better at building relationships than credit unions. Everything about the way a credit union does business is relationship focused — right down to serving “members,” not “customers.” Furthermore, a credit union’s employees and leadership team are generally from the same community as the people they serve and so they understand their members at a deeper level than traditional banks.

Walk into a credit union and you see your neighbors, not a giant national corporation. The ability to build and cultivate relationships has enabled credit unions to thrive. But the rise of the mobile wallet, a growing millennial membership base, and the need to serve a greater geographical area have caused a dramatic downturn in the number of members visiting their brick-and-mortar credit union branch. In fact, according to research by CACI, consumer visits to retail branches are expected to drop 36% by 2022, and fewer members walking through the door means fewer opportunities to engage and build relationships. Add to it that millennials are two to three times more likely to switch banks than other generations, and your relationship problem becomes a retention problem.

In an increasingly digital world with fewer and fewer opportunities to actually see members, how can credit unions continue to effectively build relationships? Sure, an app can be user-friendly and convenient, but it doesn’t build a relationship between credit union and member. Only personal interaction can do that. Delivering a truly first-class omnichannel banking experience is imperative.

The good news is that the latest technologies offer many options for credit unions to leverage omnichannel strategies and provide additional avenues for personal interaction with members. By adopting mobile video banking, credit unions can continue to build member trust by providing face-to-face, personal service regardless of location.

We’ve seen this in action with Illinois-based Baxter Credit Union (BCU) and its implementation of video-only branches. BCU serves a wide geographical area, with more than 65% of its members not located near a branch. Using Vidyo’s next-generation video collaboration technology, BCU can bring the in-branch experience directly to a member’s home, office, or mobile device. The power of Vidyo allows BCU to increase member engagement and foster those valuable relationships with even its most distant members.

The power of a truly omnichannel approach is not only about distance or reaching millennials, it’s about bringing simplicity to members and efficiency to employees. Missouri-based BluCurrent Credit Union is seeing the benefits of face-to-face video collaboration inside physical branches. BluCurrent Credit Union serves 20,000 members across three branches and uses Vidyo to ensure that members can connect with subject-matter experts regardless of the branch they visit. With these face-to-face interactions, BluCurrent has seen their cross-sale rate increase by 20%, with 93% of users saying they would recommend the video banking service.

Banking is changing, but the value of relationships is as important as ever. Technology like Vidyo’s allows credit unions to build stronger relationships across their entire membership base, regardless of location or need.

If you’re a financial services professional and have experience using video banking, we’d like to hear from you! Give us your feedback on how engaging with customers and members using real-time communications is helping your business needs.

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