CUSO MAGAZINE: We are joined by Esteban Camargo, Manager of Communications and Content Marketing for CU*Answers, to learn more about his and his team’s role. Esteban, can you tell me about what you do here at CU*Answers?
ESTEBAN: Sure. As you mentioned, I am the Manager of Communications and Content Marketing for CU*Answers, and basically what that means is I have a few different responsibilities. Organizationally, the focus is on our written content; so our website content, our blogs, our brochures, and our press release program. Anything that’s written that’s not documentation or online help, that’s my area of expertise. I help maintain our content strategy and help to ensure that website content is up-to-date and informative, and then help with our whole blog strategy, and editorials, and all that. So, part of my job is what’s being exposed to our credit unions and then the other part is what’s going out to our industry.
CUSO MAGAZINE: That’s a lot of content for you to cover, isn’t it?
I don’t apologize for the amount of content we create, because I think it is one of our organization’s biggest strengths. I don’t think you see as much of this from other organizations and I think it’s very valuable in terms of the amount of information, the amount of knowledge, etc. We just we want to share, we want to help educate, and we want to make it easier for credit unions to do their jobs every day. Part of that strategy is our brochures, where and how we let credit unions know about new products and services, and asking if they are going to understand the information when they open up that pamphlet, so there’s a lot to it. The blogs are another dimension.
CUSO MAGAZINE: Do you assist credit unions at all?
ESTEBAN: I have assisted credit unions in the past with writing their board reports or starting their annual business plans. Recently, I helped another credit union start their own press release program. They reached out to me hoping I could take a look and give them some tips on what I thought they could do that to get that program off the ground.
CUSO MAGAZINE: Let’s suppose a credit union is creating a new brochure and they’re just not sure where to start or that it’s communicating their culture appropriately, is that something you can help with?
ESTEBAN: I’m absolutely happy to volunteer my time! It’s not something that I’ve developed into a service, I just enjoy helping credit unions. When I’ve helped in the past, it was because we wanted to work together–I learned something from them, they got some value back. Whether it’s an annual business plan, press release strategy, or some other marketing piece, that’s an opportunity for us to interact, to learn a little bit together, and to develop our skills. I welcome people reaching out to me if they need help.
CUSO MAGAZINE: You’re also a part of the Creative Council, correct? What is this council for?
ESTEBAN: The Creative Council is composed of our CEO, COO, CFO, some of our Executive Vice Presidents, our Marketing Team, and our Vice President of Creative Design. We meet to discuss how we’re developing the CU*Answers brand and image and how we’re presenting that out. Whether it’s working on strategies and planning, a design for something like our Leadership Conference, or it’s a strategy for a new means of communicating to our credit unions, that’s where the Creative Council works as a team to decide what is best for the organization.
CUSO MAGAZINE: How might credit unions apply that to their own strategy?
ESTEBAN: I think the value something like this would create for them is that it would get more people involved. Again, it’s building skills together, you get other people giving their voice, sharing their opinions, learning to be more outspoken, and you build this image together. You also get more buy-in in terms of loyalty to the organization, whether it’s a council or some other focus group at the organization, it gives those people involved a chance to learn and to become more invested.
CUSO MAGAZINE: Tell us about the Marketing Team.
ESTEBAN: The Marketing Team works hand-in-hand with our Web Services team, and we offer not only the internal CU*Answers marketing services, but we do a lot of marketing services for credit unions, whether that’s newsletters, statement inserts, or building a website and designing that. Visit the Marketing team and the online store to learn a little bit more about the different services we offer.
CUSO MAGAZINE: You mentioned interacting with various teams, how do you fit into all that?
ESTEBAN: I am on the Marketing team, but because content is king and everywhere in our organization, I fit in everywhere and I’ve made it very clear that if somebody needs help with their written content, I’m ready to jump in and give a hand. I like teaching people and helping them become better writers and generate better content.
CUSO MAGAZINE: You have a lot of knowledge about credit unions, what would you suggest to someone if they want to learn more or teach their staff more about credit unions?
ESTEBAN: When I first started here at CU*Answers, I admit that though I had been a credit union member, I didn’t really know what that meant. So, when I first started here, I just did a lot of reading. It’s something I have a passion for. I would suggest you just go out and do more reading and read some of the industry publications.
You can learn a lot from reading about credit unions, but you can also learn a lot of skills by doing. So if there’s something you want to do and be better at, just go after it. If you want to get involved, just raise your hand and put yourself out there.
CUSO MAGAZINE: What does it mean to be part of credit unions to you?
ESTEBAN: I’ve been at CU*Answers for 12 years now, but I didn’t know anything about credit unions when I started. The reason I’m still here is because I bought into the passion credit unions have. It’s not just about doing business, making money, and growing. It really is about fostering community and building these connections with real people, real members. It’s a very encouraging thing from a worldview standpoint to see that cooperation, to see the compassion that credit unions have for their members and for each other. It’s invigorating, and that’s why I stuck around because that’s more important to me than chasing the almighty buck.
CUSO MAGAZINE: Thanks for joining us today! We just have one last question, what’s your favorite word?
ESTEBAN: My favorite word is antidisestablishmentarianism. I couldn’t even give you a full definition, I just like it because it’s really long word.
To get connected with Esteban, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Marketing Team’s website.