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How to Find (and Attract) Users Outside of Your Target Demographic

As a financial organization, it is likely you have branded yourself via user demographics and are attracting a specific type of audience. While not necessarily a critical problem, diversifying your reach and using messaging that speaks to an array of prospective users will ultimately benefit your credit union or digital bank. That involves creating a specific consumer acquisition strategy. 

Identifying What Narrows Your Reach

Every financial institution wants to extend its user base. Without such extension, you cannot increase your revenues. If you are not attracting sufficient new users, or new users are part of your current demographic, it is crucial to analyze why your reach is relatively narrow.

Perhaps your consumer base consists primarily of baby boomers or Gen-Xers. If you are not attracting millennials and users of Generation Z (those born in the 20th century), your growth options are limited. In the world of fintech and robo-advisors, financial institutions might seem a bit old-fashioned to these generations. The right approach will change that, because they still need solid financial advice and products.

Take an in-depth look at your website. Does your site feature people of various ages and backgrounds, or is it geared — consciously or not — to only one certain type of consumer? People highlighted on your site should reflect the diversity you seek in your user base. Otherwise, anyone outside your current user demographic gets the message, overtly or subliminally, that your organization is not for them.

Increasingly, many consumers speak a language other than English at home. Businesses offering services in the most commonly used languages in your area via bilingual staff and website access can attract new users. For example, if demographic surveys show that 20 percent of your area’s residents primarily speak Spanish, your credit union or bank can potentially gain many new users if offering bilingual options. Even people who speak English fairly well are more comfortable discussing financial issues in their native language. Whether taking out a loan or making an investment, people want to ensure they understand all the nuances of the transaction.

Crafting a Customer Acquisition Strategy

Developing a customer acquisition strategy starts by knowing what appeals to that particular demographic. First, keep in mind that millennials tend to conduct their own research before making financial decisions. They want convenience, and if your site is not convenient, they will look elsewhere. This tech-savvy generation expects first-rate mobile banking ability, so if your mobile infrastructure is not as strong as it should be, beefing it up is vital.

Note also that millennials, unlike boomers and Gen-Xers, are less likely to make a phone call for a customer service issue than text or online chat — or use social media. Twitter and Facebook are good, inexpensive ways to publicize your financial institution products and acquire new users. Social media marketing is invaluable for these purposes. Making it easier to conduct all business online goes a long way in attracting new users.

Launching the Right Campaign

Acquiring new users means conducting the right kind of campaign and messaging. For younger generations, the most-attractive messaging may include:

  • Financial literacy — offering educational information, such as how to improve a credit score
  • Online budgeting tools
  • Personal guidance — one-on-one conversations about down payment savings, retirement planning and more
  • Serving the local community

The personalized service that your organization can offer over larger, more impersonal competitors has always been an advantage. Millennials want such personalization even more than previous generations.

Gen Z is still in the credit-establishing process. Emphasizing that your organization can help them in this endeavor is a valuable campaign tool. Helping young people establish credit can make them longtime, even lifetime, consumers.

Contact Us 

At Lumin Digital, our platform allows credit unions and digital banks to innovate quickly, and with minimal risk. We offer a cloud-native platform that allows your organization to create personalized user experiences — to provide them with information and guidance specific to their needs. By designing a completely personalized journey, Lumin Digital redefines user engagement.

Jane Meggitt’s work has appeared in dozens of publications, including USA Today, Zack’s, Financial Advisor,, the Houston Chronicle and the Nest. She is a graduate of New York University.