Your members have blogs too

Apparently Queensland Teachers’ CU in Australia recently re-designed their home page.  Some of those changes included a welcome page, or splash page.  Hopefully QTCU is paying attention to the blogosphere and is aware that one of their members is voicing their concern.  I’d love to see QTCU comment on the author’s site about their new home page, but that could be wishfully thinking.  As I’m sure William can attest to, sometimes getting involved in the debate online can be risky.  Just a great reminder, members carry on conversations about CU all of the place.  Make sure you are paying attention!

What can credit unions learn from Facebook?

Facebook recently announced their move to translate the site into different languages for use all over the world.  Facebook, facing a massive translation project, did what any good web 2.0 company would do: make their users do it.

Facebook has created an app called Translations that lets users translate phrases and then vote on their accuracy.  What a great way to take on a large and normally internal project.

What could credit unions stand to learn from this?  What could we “outsource” to our members?  Product development comes to my mind first.  Let our members tell us what they want.

Source: Mashable

UPDATE:  The link in the Mashable article to the Facebook translations page doesn’t work.  It seems Mashable got a little ahead of themselves or Facebook had a slight leak.  Either way, the concept is still firm.  How could credit unions take advantage of this trend?

Free Blogs for the CU Industry!

Yup you read the title right.  Free blogs.  But wait, you can get free blogs just about anywhere you say.  While that it true, I’ve grown slightly tired of seeing credit unions attempting to get into blogging using free tools like Blogger or wordpress.com.  While both provide some basic functionality, neither are flexible enough to make great looking or feature-rich blogs.

I have setup cublogs.org to address just this issue.  Powered by WordPressMu, the multiple blog engine that wordpress.com is based on, anyone can sign-up instantly for a personal blog or a credit union blog.  One of the major differences between cublogs.org and wordpress.com is the ability to use plugins and have complete control of theme files of your site.  And obviously, there isn’t any software or servers for you to manage!

If you are a teller or the VP of Marketing and have been wanting to setup a blog about your CU, the CU industry, or just a personal  blog, stop by and set on up.  Play around it with it for a while and see if you like it!

I’m always looking for feedback, so comment on an article or drop me a line on the Contact page.  And if you are one of the 3000 or so CU’s without a homepage, drop me a line.  I would love the opportunity to help out any CU setup a free website!

CU Homepage on WordPress!

Just stumbled onto Mutual Savings CU’s website and it is done with WordPress.  And, I don’t know if sadly is the right word here, but it looks a lot better than many CU sites I’ve seen!  Very easy to navigate and very clean!  It is a great example of how WordPress doesn’t just have to be a blogging engine, but works great as a CMS as well.

I’m not sure about the name, but Banktastic looks cool!

My earlier post this week,  Making RSS Easy, stirred up a great pot.  Mark over at the Garland Group has been working on exactly what I was talking about.

Banktastic is, "A community helping bankers quickly find relevant, industry specific information and share it with others".  While I can pick on Mark about the name, the work they (he) has done to aggregate RSS feeds is awesome.  The page that lists all of the feeds is here.  This is the Credit Union Feed and this is the Master Feed.  I can’t wait to share this with my peers!

Making RSS easy

I’m continually finding myself talking to more executive level employees about ideas generated from the blogosphere (like Doug’s funeral plot lending) and the sources of the ideas.  Most of them are now familiar with the the term blog and kinda have a grasp of it, but now we need to make the information easy to consume.  Subscribing to RSS feeds is fairly easy to do with the appropriate tools (Google Reader, Outlook 2007, etc) however keeping tabs on all of the sources of information is challenging.  Open Source CU has a great blogroll that’s pretty inclusive, but doesn’t catch everything CU related, try as they might. 

So what I want to be able to do is provide one, or maybe two, feeds to c-level employees, or anyone else interested, to simplify their consumption of feeds as well as the management.  I’ve been looking everywhere for a community-like tool in which a group of people (myself, Trabian, Garland Group, Gene, Ron, etc) would be able to contribute and manage a list of RSS feeds that simply aggregate into one massive feed.  That way instead of trying to subscribe to the 50 CU-related feeds or 50 FI-related feeds the new user to RSS could simply pick one or two feeds and have their finger on the pulse of the whole industry.

So to sum it up, I’m first looking to see if there is a tool to aggregate RSS feeds into one simply syndication and if it can be setup to have a group of people manage it…