ICYMI (In Case You Missed It)

In Case You Missed It – 1.24.24

Boomers and booms, brands that x-ed out, a different type of Visa, and why you might be able to afford your very own influencer after all. Oh, and a tiny bit of bragging on our part. Here’s what we’ve seen lately, in case you missed it:

Congrats, it’s a bouncing baby website!

We don’t usually use this space to do a lot of horn-tooting, but we’re just too proud. We recently built and launched this spiffy new website for Minnesota Valley Federal Credit Union in Mankato. Congratulations to the MNVFCU team! Want to know more? Here’s how we build great credit union websites.

Okay, Boomer, when’s the next housing boom?

According to a recent report, empty-nest baby boomers own 28% of the nation’s large homes (3BR or more), while millennials with kids own just 14%. Ten years ago, those percentages were almost equal. Of course, boomers with paid off mortgages or low interest loans don’t have a lot of incentive to sell, and higher prices and mortgage rates make it harder for millennials to even consider owning a home. But what happens when the market changes? CUs should be planning ahead. (BTW, I was actually surprised to see Indy as having the highest percentage of millennial ownership.)

Consumer spending is certainly booming right now.

In one pre-order weekend, Apple may have sold 16,000-18,000 Vision Pro headsets, their new “mixed-reality” “spatial computing” devices, likely selling out their production inventory. While those numbers may not sound unusual for a new Apple product, and some experts say those numbers are low (160K out of Apple’s 1.2 billion active users), you gotta remember that Vision Pros were selling for $3499 each. I realize that Apple has their super fans, but consumers are certainly spending right now, so you might want to restart those loan promotions.

How did “X” become a branding go-to?

Whether or not Elon Musk is willing to admit it, “X” has been a shorthand for decades, with companies often using it to name experimental and innovative projects. In 1947, the Marine Corps started the helicopter marine experiment, HMX-1, as a way to use passenger helicopters for military use. Ten years later, HMX-1 became part of the President’s security detail and transport. For a while, “X” was used to describe something as generic. Then there’s ExxonMobil, Xerox, Xfinity, the XBox, Nissan’s Xterra, and the XFiles series, just to name a few that came before the Twitter rebrand. Sorry, Elon, but you weren’t very original after all.

How does anyone make a living as an “Influencer”?

Neil Patel interviewed almost 6K influencers and content creators and discovered their average monthly income was only $323.19. Even those that had more than a million followers only averaged around $6K/month. Mostly because too many Influencers are creating content for the masses, not building a community around something specific. But Patel also points out that connecting with an Influencer might not be as expensive as you think. They aren’t exactly rolling in money, so they might be a cheaper way for you to connect with a specific audience. As long as the content is fresh of course.

Freelancers and nomads need Visas

I’ll admit that I completely misunderstood the type of “Freelance Visa” in this article from Exploding Topics. They’re not referring to a credit card. They’re talking about the legal document that allows people to travel to, and work in, foreign countries. But on second thought… a “Freelance Visa” credit card also makes a lot of sense, especially since more than one in three workers is now a freelancer. Does your credit union have the flexibility and policies in place to serve, say, an animator or web developer who bounces around the globe and works wherever they find decent wifi? Or, what can you offer people who WFH or freelance from home and need to remodel their office or buy some equipment? More broadly, this is why CU marketers need to be deeply involved with product innovation, design, and policies.

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