Credit union marketers are excited about CUNA’s Credit Union Awareness Initiative.

After seeing some early creative work stemming from the initiative, hundreds of marketing professionals burst into applause at the CUNA Marketing & Business Development Council Conference in San Francisco this week.

“If all credit unions speak with one voice, consumers will get the message a lot better,” Parrish says.

CUNA’s new brand platform and awareness creative—known as “Open Your Eyes”—aims to shake up the industry, says Michelle Hunter, senior vice president of Credit Union of Southern California, Anaheim. Calif.

“We rely on messages that we have used for years, and years, and years because they resonate with us,” but not necessarily consumers, says Hunter, who introduced the initiative at the conference.

It’s time to break free of that cycle with the new, research-backed brand platform and creative, Hunter says.

“I am very excited about it,” says Nancy Howard, marketing specialist for Coca-Cola Credit Union in Atlanta.

People are aware of credit unions but aren’t jumping on board, or seeing their full value and capabilities, Howard says.

The awareness campaign, she says, could boost membership by making credit unions more relevant and personal to consumers.

“This is for folks who don’t know yet how awesome we are,” Hunter says.

CUNA encourages credit unions interested in getting involved with the initiative to email and to review a research-backed messaging guide at (password: openyoureyes).