by Jac La Tour
Our blog team has been having a friendly debate this week about whether or what to write about “Bank Transfer Day.” If you’ve missed all the hype about this grassroots event, here’s a good explanation of how it got started from a thoughtful online article titled “Can Credit Unions Make a Success of Bank Transfer Day?”
After becoming increasingly frustrated with her bank’s poor service and expanding array of nickel-and-diming fees, 27-year-old Los Angeles gallery owner Kristen Christian went where many of her generation go when upset: Facebook. On Oct. 4, she created a Facebook event called “Bank Transfer Day,” which urged participants to move their money from banks to credit unions on Nov. 5, and sent out invitations to about 500 people.
For all kinds of reasons, Christian’s Facebook event caught on. Consider these stats:
- By October 31, 68,000 people responded saying they planned to attend.
- When the two-year-old Move Your Money project “got wind of Bank Transfer Day, it helped spread the word by alerting its network of more than 40,000 Facebook fans and 3,000 Twitter followers.”
More than a few credit unions have now joined in, which brings me back to our team’s friendly debate. Here’s the crux of it. If people are upset about things like high fees (or any fees) for some of their banking services, they should definitely check out credit unions. Here at ECCU, for example, you don’t pay a fee for your debit card and your checking account is free. But…and this is at the core of our debate…are these the best reasons to start banking with a credit union called Evangelical Christian Credit Union?
“Maybe” is one view. If people become members out of frustration and then discover the uniqueness of ECCU, that could be a very good thing. Another view is that, while we can “compete” on things like our fees and rates, those aren’t what make us unique.
Where we’ve found common ground in our debate is on what does make ECCU unique. When people (and ministries) join this particular credit union, they can be assured that their deposits are invested in ministry. For us bloggers, this is a big deal. And while we agree it’s the best reason to join ECCU, it’s just not the only one.
So hey, maybe you can settle this one for us. What do you think is the best reason to join ECCU?