Your Vendor’s Website: A Treasure Trove of Information

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I’m going to start by making a major generalization: most people don’t comb through their vendor’s website with a fine-toothed comb. When I buy a product or service, I don’t immediately go to that company’s website and read up everything I possibly can on that company and its product.

I might go there if I need help with something specific, but otherwise it’s just kinda… there. And while this might be a perfectly fine policy for my new pair of shoes, maybe it isn’t when it comes to the vendors we buy from in business. You may be getting plenty out of the product or service you’ve paid for, but are you getting the most out of it? When’s the last time you did comb through your vendor’s site to see if there were any nuggets of wisdom out there for you to implement?

Taking a look at the CU*Answers website, there’s a wealth of information out there that may help your credit union take your operations to the next level. But this goes beyond just my organization’s available materials—all your vendors are likely to have valuable information out there to help you get to the next level. Here are a few things to be on the lookout for:

Consultations

Chances are your vendor provides some excellent resources for learning about the product or service you’ve purchased. Reference materials, best practices, tips and tricks—these are all meant to help you learn on your own. But what about consultations?

Consultations, like a tune-up to your car, give you an expert’s opinion to ensure everything’s working properly. Does your vendor offer a similar service, where a tune-up or consultation involves taking a look at a particular area for your credit union and reviewing with you and your staff?

Having done a few of these meetings myself, I can attest to their effectiveness. Credit unions often discover a few tools they didn’t realize were available, such as dashboards, which can help analyze the credit union’s health, address some possible marketing strategies, and help find ways to help bring members back to the credit union.

Just remember, don’t rely too heavily on consultations! They’re also learning opportunities.

Resources

Have you ever felt stumped on an area within software and weren’t quite sure where to go next? Need help configuring a new product? Well, many vendors have resources available within their site that will become your new best friend – trust me. Here, you’ll discover educational tools, booklets, and even marketing materials that could be very beneficial.

They also may take a wide variety of forms, such as basic reference materials, online help, best practices, tips and tricks, and more. Keep an eye out for all the ways you can learn and grow.

Educational Videos

Video is becoming the go to source for education. With the prevalence of YouTube and video tutorials for just about everything, there’s a good chance your vendor is doing something with video too.

Within your vendor’s site, you may find instructional and marketing videos that you can use, whether it be for your staff or your members. It’s not all just about documents! You can even find sneak previews and recordings of exclusive training sessions. Couldn’t make a webinar? Chances are you’ll find a recording online. Videos make learning not only helpful, but also enjoyable.

I could talk forever about the great things your vendors’ websites might have to offer, but I feel I may start losing you towards the end. So take a look! Explore your vendors’ sites – they’re tools not just meant to sell, but to help.

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