Despite supply issues and higher prices across the auto industry, car sales have continued to remain strong. As new and used vehicles continue to sell, financial institutions have had plenty of opportunities to make car loans and increase their share of the auto-lending market, but it hasn’t been easy for credit unions attempting to do so. Credit unions still make up only a small share of the auto loan market, but there are still plenty of opportunities to change that! On our most recent webinar, we talked with credit unions leaders on auto loan growth for credit unions and how Fetch Marketing from Ser Tech can help achieve this goal.
Auto Loan Sales and Shares
A Credit Union Times report from March found that new car sales were up 52.9% from March 2020, according to data from TrueCar Inc. Used vehicles sales went up 104% in the same time period. Unfortunately, credit union auto loans ended up stalling in January 2021. New car loans were down 6% as of Jan. 31 while used car loans saw a slight growth by 4.2%.
Credit unions’ also still have a relatively small share of the overall auto lending market. According to The Financial Brand, Experian data from March showed that credit union market share was only 10.21%. There’s plenty of room for credit unions to grow their share of the market, but how in this incredibly competitive environment?
Improve Growth With The Right Marketing
One of the best ways to generate interest in your credit union’s auto loan offerings is to raise awareness through proper, targeted marketing. Consider reaching out to borrowers as they are shopping for a car by offering pre-approvals. Pre-approvals that are trigger-based can work well when you have the right data and are executed at just the right time. You can also use this data to maximize the impact of any digital campaigns you decide to run. In some cases, a borrower is not looking to buy a new a car, but to refinance their existing one, and marketing to them can be another way to expand your lending portfolio.
Data-Driven and Targeted Marketing In Action
During our latest Ser Tech LIVE Session, executives from three credit unions shared how they have been implementing targeted marketing strategies to grow their auto lending portfolios.
Texas Trust CU: The VP of Marketing and PR Sidney Henderson shared how Texas Trust was able to offer a pre-approved refinance through a campaign with Ser Tech. She explained that one of the key parts to the campaign’s success was the partnership with internal departments to bolster results.
“One of the lessons that we learned as a credit union is that when we work together and bring in those other key stakeholders, we definitely get a lot more response.”
Excel FCU: This same spirit of collaboration is also prevalent at Excel Federal Credit Union. Marketing Director Britney Bailey told us the team worked together to do their best for their membership. Excel FCU’s partnership with Ser Tech and effective communication between the credit union’s other departments allowed the credit union to both focus on lending and better engagement with members. As a result, Excel FCU members have been able to lower their auto loan rates by as much as 9 percentage points!
“You have to work together, to collaborate, and to ensure that we are promoting the correct messaging that fits the needs of the membership.”
University of Nebraska FCU: Marketing products is not simply putting information out there and hoping for the best. As VP of Member Experience Dena Noe told us, it’s important to ensure a member needs the product before offering it, and that’s just what University of Nebraska FCU does. Using the insights gained from data, their targeted and trigger marketing campaigns allow them to meet consumers at the decision-making point and continuously check in with members at every stage of the auto loan process.
“We don’t do any marketing that just blankets the market without thinking about who that message is going to anymore. We are very targeted in who we’re approaching.”
Auto lending opportunities exist, and credit unions have the opportunity to grow their presence in the market if they take the right steps. With GDS Marketing Services by your credit union’s side, you can accomplish just that.