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What is in a name

August 12, 2012

I had one of those phone call interviews from a credit union magazine this afternoon. There is some hesitation to do these as a number of times in the past what has been said has sometimes been printed in a different fashion.

The question was about the use or non-use of the name credit union. This has been a long ongoing debate amongst credit unions in B.C One can understand, purely from a marketing sense, how removing ‘credit union” from you name can give you a stonger marketing differentiation. But in doing so it also can imply that those cooperative principles on which your financial cooperative follows are maybe not as important as they should be. I know that remark will bring some strong comments forward but much of who we are is in our name.

The key to me is that sometimes “credit union” as a name was changed because one hadn’t reflected or understood what it meant. The name was changed for marketing purposes, it did not change you as an institution necessarily. I think what was more a challenge was dropping the hands and globe logo from signage and printed material. That is the only real common identifier for credit unions worldwide so removing that could suggest some negative connotations.

What I am seeing now is a return, by some, to the credit union name and more usage of the hands and globe logo.

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