Strategic Link Announces SimplyCredit, a New Business Solution for CUs

According to the Federal Reserve Bank, Americans owe more than $1 trillion in credit card debt, the highest level since the Great Recession.

The lion’s share of balances revolve month-to-month, which points to an oddity. Even as consumers increase their card usage, they feel little loyalty to national brand card issuers. That lack of loyalty is apparent according to Net Promoter Score, which ranks card companies near the bottom of all industries. While consumers are reluctant to promote their card services, they still use them, in part, because of the richness of card rewards programs. In 2016, rewards spending was a whopping $22 billion. That’s just one reason credit unions have a hard time competing in the space.

The credit card business requires scale and, in addition to rewards spending, entrenched credit card service companies pay out hundreds of millions of dollars each year to promote their brands. So, what can a credit union do? Your Association’s Strategic Link has partnered with the fintech company, SimplyCredit, as a superior way to attract high-quality loan balances. SimplyCredit’s message to credit union members speaks to its intriguing business model: Don’t bank with national card issuers when you can sweep current balances to a credit union.

It may sound like a once-and-done debt consolidation, but SimplyCredit offers more than that. The company provides a seamless web and mobile experience that enables consumers to enroll high-cost credit cards and auto-sweep the balances to partnering credit unions on a dynamic ongoing basis. In many cases, members save thousands of dollars a year and make only one convenient payment each month. After evaluating SimplyCredit’s systems and processes, Strategic Link believes the company can help member credit unions modernize and grow.

“SimplyCredit offers digital tools and support you can’t find elsewhere,” says Jason Smith, NWCUA’s Vice President of Strategic Resources. “They represent a highly automated answer to the challenges of loan and membership growth.”

Yet, online tools are just one aspect of the support, says Alan Bahr, Senior Vice President of SimplyCredit. “Our data scientists provide sophisticated analytics to target the right people at the right time, and our marketing efforts drive prospects to a co-branded online application. The services have resulted in application rates approaching 6 percent, and it doesn’t cost our credit union partners anything upfront.”

Considering the debt consolidation offers coming from digital lenders, this service could be an important tool for credit unions.

“Members are being targeted by fintech companies,” Smith says, “and the disruption typically begins with consolidation offers and invitations to apply through automation tools. We think SimplyCredit represents a way to turn the tables and disrupt the disruptors.”

Questions about SimplyCredit and how it can help? Contact NWCUA’s Strategic Partnerships Manager Corina Ruiz at cruiz@nwcua.org to learn more.