Peek Inside: Sound Credit Union’s Marketing Department

Assets: $1.03 Billion
Area served: Puget Sound Area, Washington State

Number of members: 110,000

Number of branches: 21
Members per branch: 5,238

Number of total employees: 210
Ratio of members to employees: 524:1

Top marketing executive: Robyn LaChance, VP/CMO
Number of employees in marketing department:
Seven (3.3% of total workforce)

  • One VP/CMO
  • One Manager
  • Four Coordinators
  • One Assistant

Number of campaigns run every year: 7-10 major product campaigns

URL for Facebook page: n/a
URL for Twitter account: n/a
URL for YouTube channel: n/a

Systems & Tools

Have Now Don’t Have Not Yet,
But Plan To
Formal written marketing plan X
Brand standards manual (for design) X
Brand guidelines book (for staff) X
CRM system X
MCIF system X
Onboarding program X
Matrix mail program X
Social media strategy X
In-branch video merchandising system X
Formal SEO strategy X

In-House vs. Vendor

In-House Vendor Both
Advertising X
Design X
Media buying X
Direct mail X
Email marketing X
Web design/development X
Online advertising/marketing X
Social media X
Promotional items, giveaways X
Sales collateral, brochures X
Public relations X
Community relations/events X


Marketing Channels Deployed

Using Now Don’t Use Not Yet,
But Plan To
Direct mail X
Print ads X
TV ads X
Radio ads X
Billboards/outdoor X
Ads within online banking X
Paid banner ad placements X
Search engine marketing (e.g., Adwords) X
Microsites X
Email marketing X
eStatement ads X
QR codes X
SEO strategy X
Facebook X
Twitter X
YouTube X
LinkedIn X
Foursquare X
Blog X
Online forum X

Favorite Campaign

That’s a tough one, but two campaigns come to mind. First, from a sheer results standpoint, we recently introduced a re-purposed home equity product as a no-fee, mortgage refinance option. The target audience was people who had about 15 years or less left on their mortgage, who wanted to take advantage of this current low rate environment but didn’t want to pay closing costs. We received excellent responses from members and non-members alike.

The second was a lighthearted branch relocation campaign. The new location was placed on the corner of two of the busiest streets in our capital city, Martin Way and Lily Road. To draw attention to the new address, the campaign graphically positioned “Martin + Lily” as sweethearts, depicting the names carved into a tree trunk surrounded by a heart. We had terrific feedback from the community, our own employees, and enjoyed many new members/accounts as a result.

The Biggest Challenges Over the Next 12-24 Months

We just merged a similar sized credit union into our ours. We are integrating systems in the Spring, and entering a completely new market as a result. Our challenge will be to gain market awareness and retain members from the merging credit union. A few short months before the merger integration we are converting online banking, online bill pay and mobile banking platforms for our legacy members.

Critical Products to Market This Year

Loans, loans, and more loans. And Checking.

Social Media Strategy

N/A – Currently under development.

How Do You Track ROI?

New members, new accounts, increased portfolio balances, all the usual. We generate reports from our MCIF as well as our core processing system.

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