Hippodrome Experts Panel: 2024 Predictions

Finopotamus has organized a panel of experts for a recurring series called The Hippodrome Experts Panel. Every month, the panel is presented with a pertinent technology question, and their insightful responses are shared. To start the new year, they reached out to our Co-founder and CRO, Barry Kirby, to get his 2024 fintech predictions, along with insights from several other industry experts.

Barry Kirby, Co-Founder & Chief Revenue Officer, Union Credit

Last year, as most credit unions prioritized deposits to offset shrinking margins, competitive fintechs were building their loan portfolios, filling a market void, and acquiring customers. This is another example of how credit unions’ conservatism is holding them back behind their competitors. To stay in the game, in 2024 credit unions need to consider the pace of change in today’s operating environment and keep an eye on the future. The next generation wants to connect, shop locally, and have trusted providers. The credit unions that can break through the old ways to meet consumers where they are, with the products and services that they truly want and need, will win lasting relationships within their communities.

 In 2024 the path to new member acquisition and growth includes addressing the aging membership challenge, shifting focus from large to small deposit acquisition and reviving lending. 

 Winning credit unions will address the aging membership challenge by investing in an embedded finance strategy to appeal to modern, young, and digital-savvy consumers. This approach integrates competitive offers directly into younger consumers’ everyday shopping interfaces, simplifying interactions and making it more convenient to engage with and join the institution. 

To attract younger demographics, credit unions will also shift their focus from deposit acquisition tactics that target high-income individuals, like Certificate of Deposits (CDs), to ones that appeal to a diverse customer base with modest deposits. This will build financially healthy behavior amongst younger members while driving growth and long-term engagement for the institution.

Lastly, credit unions will view lending as a long-term vision and a chance to make a meaningful impact on their communities. This approach may require a shift past traditional methods like indirect lending and into more targeted approaches for new prospects that will breathe life into the institution.