CINCINNATI-Credit unions should continue to look for ways to improve their data-mining capabilities as they head into 2013, while also working to capitalize on the current "daily deals" craze.

"There's a very, very rich opportunity right now for understanding what your consumers are doing, how they're behaving and what local establishments they may be patronizing," said Royal Cole, president of Financial Institution Services at Vantiv. "That creates an opportunity for more target marketing campaigns and potential partnerships built on a localized basis."

Cole stressed the importance of segmentation as a way to understand a cardholder base and thus market more effectively "so that they're squeezing every valuable drop out of every dollar they're investing in their marketing and member-satisfaction programs."

Some CUs have already entered into the daily deals space, forming partnerships with local businesses, and Cole said there's no reason not to expect that to continue.

"I do think you'll see more of a proliferation around the daily deals space, and also around merchant-funded loyalty programs over time, and credit unions being able to take advantage of those opportunities for their members, as well as the non-interest income opportunities they're creating out of those transactions."

Cole added that some of the major strategic issues of past years are still of prime importance, including mobile (along with mobile wallet). "With mobile, every institution is different about what is right for their membership; mobile is the strategy, and are you going to offer a mobile wallet for your members or take advantage of publically available mobile wallets that will be available as marketed by outside vendors?"

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