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Wanted: Vice President of Unbanking

Connex Credit Union in Connecticut, whose slogan is “Unbank With Us,” is hosting a contest for a paid internship with a grand title, “Vice President of Unbanking.”

Amy Stanton, AVP/Marketing at Connex, said the role is “essentially a snazzy name for a marketing intern who will represent all things Connex in the young community around our branches.”

An attractive, one-page microsite provides a simple and excellent overview of the position’s selection process and what candidates need to do for consideration.

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Applicants who feel they would be a dynamic, outgoing Gen-Y spokesperson should send their resume along with a brief video explaining why they think they would be the Vice President of Unbanking. To stimulate ideas and provide some degree of strategic direction for applicants, Connex makes the following suggestions:

“What is it about traditional banking you don’t like? What makes credit unions different than banks? Would you rather share your profits with shareholders, or have a say in how your money is managed? These are a few ideas to get you started. Get our attention and remember, be creative and have fun with it. Best of luck — we can’t wait to see it!”

The successful candidate will get unique experience in a real marketing environment while getting paid and earning college credits. The VP of Unbanking will help “tell the world all of the great things about Connex and what it means to ‘Unbank.’” The duration of the internship is not specified.

“It’s one of the biggest elements of my work and projects over the next several months and ties in precisely with my task of increasing awareness of ‘Unbanking,’” Stanton continued.

This brief video, starring the credit union’s current Gen-Y spokesperson,
outlines the basics of the Connex “Vice President of Unbanking” recruitment promotion.

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Paul Stull, SVP at Arizona State CU, points out one big snag with contests requiring video submissions: a candidate’s success is often defined by the amount of video production skills they have. “While many contests are designed to pick spokesters or high-profile talent, it seems that a large number of people with great skills may be left behind,” Stull told The Financial Brand.

“It just seems that if you’ve been to film school you have a much better chance at winning,” Stull continued. “This rules out a number of talented people who just don’t know how to express themselves using video.”

“These contests capture the flash, but not the substance,” he said.

This candidate may be very well suited for the position, but you’d never be able to tell based on his video entry. He seems like a nice kid, but his video is super boring. Does this mean style supersedes substance?

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  1. I second Paul’s thoughts about the challenges with video contests. While they may look cool and have a lot of buzz to begin with, they really offer high barriers to entry as everyone can not/does not want to take the time to produce something. Ask yourself, would you shoot, produce, edit and post a 1 to 2 minute video to win $500.

    One thing we have seen more success with is when contest are based around sharing stories in simple written word or even uploading a photo. While it may not be as glamorous as a video contest, you may be surprised at how many more entries you will get.

  2. I like the sentiment behind this, but feel that calling an internship “VP of Unbanking” actually belittles the gist of the effort. I fear that calling an intern a “VP of Unbanking” sends the message “this is just a fun marketing campaign–we don’t really take it seriously as a business initiative.”

  3. Ahhhh…”unbanking” — first made popular some 20+ years ago as the tagline for what is now Harborstone Credit Union (the old McChord Air Force Base CU just outside of Seattle).

    Totally agree with you Paul and James — as prolific as we’ve become with video these days, those with the biggest and best toys will typically shine brightest, be the most impactful to judges who can’t put that part of it aside and judge the people for who they are not how cool there video is.

    Now Paul — tell me again how much you love kids accounts and those fabulous mascots (two new ones of which I saw at booths at the CUNA 1 Conference). Geesh.

  4. I agree with Jeff. If Connex Credit Union really wanted to demonstrate a commitment to the “Unbank” position, and really promote this effort as a serious business initiative, the Vice President of Unbanking job position would actually be a Vice President, not an intern. If not that route, then I think a more appropriate title for the internship (i.e. Unbanking Evangelist) would make this effort a little easier to completely understand.

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