To celebrate its redesigned website’s first anniversary, Belvoir Federal Credit Union ($270 million; 30,000 members; Woodbridge, VA) was looking for an effective promotion tool to help build brand awareness to its members and attract prospects. Leveraging its new website, Belvior Federal used an online, interactive marketing game that, in the end, far exceeded its expectations.
From March 30 to May 14, 2010, Belvoir Federal used an interactive online scavenger hunt game called CU Web Hunt (http://www.codegreen.org/cuwebhunt) created by Code Green. In doing so, Belvoir Federal exceeded its member participation goal by nearly 400 percent, having approximately 1,120 members participate from its more than 30,000 membership.
Website as a “game board”
CU Web Hunt system works by using a credit union’s entire website as the “game board” for a site-wide interactive treasure hunt. A Web Hunt campaign provides incentives for members to explore all around a credit union’s website in search of interactive game piece icons, all the while exploring the credit union’s great rates, services, and strategic pages.
Belvoir Federal, for example, incorporated the Web Hunt to engage members to surf the credit union’s website, reviewing its various products and services pages as a brand awareness campaign. Each member who participated in the online hunt could locate nine “slices of life” icons in the shape of pie slices. As each game piece was discovered, it was added to the member’s virtual game card, showing their progress through the web hunt. Once all the slices were found, completing the pie, participants were entered into a drawing for a variety of prizes.
“This campaign was a brand awareness effort to show how our products and services relate to their life stages – resulting in the ‘slices of life’ focus,” explains Belvoir Federal’s Amy Shanks. “As a result, our expectations were greatly exceeded when we saw the final numbers. We definitely know our members are aware of what products and services we have now.”
The 134,380 online users who visited the site during the 45-day Web Hunt campaign were an increase of almost 40,000 over the initial launch of the redesigned website the previous year. In fact, these individuals viewed 255,284 pages throughout the course of the Web Hunt, which almost doubled the number of page views in the first month of the redesign launch in 2009.
Another disparate before-and-after statistic shows visitors tallying up 1,525 page views at the “Having a Baby” life stage portion of Belvoir Federal’s website during the Web Hunt campaign. In comparison, there were only 11 page views during the 45 days prior to the campaign (February 1 to March 29). “That’s obviously an enormous difference that shows the effectiveness of the game,” Shanks adds.
Another intriguing statistic occurred on the campaign’s opening day when 95 visitors clicked on the Web Hunt game banner to enter the game. These visitors spent more than 12 minutes on the Web Hunt site searching. “That’s a very sticky website for us,” she says.
Belvoir Federal awarded 10 winners with prizes ranging from a 5 percent one-year certificate, two Washington Nationals first-baseline major league baseball tickets with parking, two VIP season passes to Kings Dominion amusement park, and family four-pack AMC movie tickets with a concession gift card.
“This is the second time Belvoir Federal has used Web Hunt and each time the success has been big,” says Jason Green, CEO and founder of Code Green, developer of CU Web Hunt. “The numbers are just amazing. I think as we get more and more used to social and gaming interactivity on the web, campaigns like this will become more and more successful.
Code Green’s CU Web Hunt has helped other credit unions have success. For instance, Atlantic Financial Federal Credit Union won the 2010 NAFCU Best Promotional Campaign Award for the Web Hunt campaign and the The Maryland/DC Credit Union Association Trailblazer Award for Marketing Excellence – Best Special Project 2010. During the 90-day campaign in the summer of 2009, Atlantic Financial’s credit union website page views soared, increasing in range from 102% to 921%, depending on the page – which in turn helped the credit union experience a rise in loan applications and new members.
Atlantic Financial’s increased numbers for membership and loans included a 68% increase in new members for July-September 2009 over the same two months in 2008. There was a 66% increase in new loan dollars for July-September 2009 over the same two months in 2008, resulting in $2,785,000 more in loans for the campaign months in 2009 than 2008.
Over the years CU Web Hunt has also won a CUES Golden Mirror, a CUNA Diamond, and a CU Journal Best Practices.