CUs Seek ‘Holy Grail’ Of Indirect Lending


SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif.—Four credit unions that use the CU Direct platform have signed on with Intuvo in an effort to deepen relationships with members who have joined via an indirect auto loan.

The Ontario, Calif.-based CU Direct announced at its annual meeting in Las Vegas earlier this year that it had made a majority investment in Intuvo, a provider of an automated software platform for personalized marketing via e-mail, direct mail and sales force automation. Intuvo’s product previously has been successfully used for mortgage lending and is expanding now into auto lending.

“We’re seeking to get to the ‘Holy Grail’ of new membership, helping credit unions get members who have come on board via the indirect loan to become engaged with the credit union,” said Intuvo CEO Jeff Shood.

The CUs currently piloting the program that will expand are the $2.6-billion Redwood CU in Santa Rosa, Calif., $933-million Xceed FCU in El Segundo, Calif., $822-million Financial Partners CU in Downey, Calif., and $394-million Kauai Community FCU in Lihue, Hawaii.

Shood reminded that deepening relationships with new members is even more critical now with the recent growth in CU membership. Analysts have stated that many of the new members being turned away by banks are not profitable, and unless CUs get them engaged with the credit union they will drag down the bottom lines at their new lenders, as well.

“Once you get someone hooked to the credit union you have them hooked,” said Shood, who said the opportunity to engage the indirect loan member is 90 days from the point the loan is funded.

Automated Process

Intuvo’s product integrates with the CU’s consumer loan origination system, determines immediate cross-sell opportunities, and then automates all of the marketing.

“The system’s goal is to understand what is going on with every member and send out highly targeted marketing and member communications,” explained Shood. “To make it happen we provide a web-based app.”

Intuvo centralizes member data into one location and then analytics determine what messages should reach each member and when.

“We prebuilt all the e-mail, direct mail, call scripts for loan officers side . . . and built those into campaigns that are then tied to member data,” said Shood. “The only thing the credit union marketing department has to do is approve what we have created and then hit the button to launch the program. Intuvo takes it from there.”

For example, the automated system, based on the person’s credit, might offer the new member with the indirect loan a credit card that delivers 2% cash back for gas. The program also has a series of onboarding messages.


Jeff Shood, Intuvo

Need Sales Culture

Keys to the program are that it accesses real-time member data and ties in the system’s marketing efforts with those of the sales team said Shood.

“We are coordinating sales staff activity with marketing activity,” said Shood. “Automated marketing is great, but if you don’t have the sales culture to back it up you will only get half the results.”

Shood said it is too soon to gauge results at CUs using Intuvo with indirect lending, but said that the program has performed very well on the mortgage side. Caleb Cook, VP of mortgage lending for the $6.4-billion Digital Credit Union in Marlborough, Mass., said his organization has used Intuvo for six months.

“Our pull-through rate on mortgage preapprovals has doubled,” said Cook.

In addition to deepening relationships with members, Cook said that is happening without adding staff, which he said Digital would have had to do to get the same results without Intuvo.

“And this program keeps everyone informed throughout the process, including the realtors who get milestone updates such as appraisals ordered and documents sent to closing. I compare it to the Amazon experience—you do not need to talk with anyone and you know where your order is at through the entire process based on e-mail updates,” said Cook. 

Patelco Using Intuvo For 4 Years

In Pleasanton, Calif., the $4.4-billion Patelco CU has used Intuvo for two years.

“Intuvo has allowed us to reach and support more members,” said Vince Salinas VP of home loans. “These members are often just starting the home-buying process and are looking for information to help them make informed decisions. Intuvo allows us to share information consistently and regularly. It’s a new, novel approach to the ‘soft sale.’”

Salinas added that too often credit unions reach out to members before they are ready to take on another product.

“Sometimes we are ‘pulling’ members that may not be in the purchasing phase or we are ‘pushing’ products and services to a member when they are still in the information gathering phase and only trying to deepen their knowledge,” said Salinas. “More consumers are seeking control over the buying process. The Intuvo tools deliver offers to members at the pace they want while keeping Patelco front and center when the time comes to buy.”

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Copyright Year: 2019
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