A new partnership between the New York Credit Union Association and MEA Financial Enterprises will help New York’s credit unions move their member communications into the digital age. Through the partnership, MEA will offer New York’s credit unions a secure two-way texting tool designed to enhance the way credit unions interact with their members.

“Texting is unquestionably the preferred method of communication for a large number of Americans, and it only makes sense that credit unions capitalize on this growing channel,” said NYCUA President and CEO William J. Mellin. “We’re excited about the Text Concierge service and its potential to help credit unions engage their members.”

MEA’s Text Concierge product, which supports both long-code and short-code messages, will allow New York credit union members to send questions or request information from the institution via text message. In turn, the tool will help credit unions manage the inquiries, set automated replies and respond to specific requests from the member.

“Text Concierge provides New York’s credit unions with a unique way of connecting with the nearly 5.4 million credit union members in the state,” said Ed Rhea, CEO of MEA Financial. “Research shows that 97 percent of Americans text daily on their mobile devices—with the average millennial texting 67 times a day—so credit unions are well-positioned to take advantage of this technology.”

In addition to the texting components, Text Concierge also includes Facebook Messenger and chatbot integration, text-enabled direct-dial extensions, a mobile app for credit union staff, and a loan transparency tool.

“MEA has been an invaluable strategic partner of the Oswego County FCU. For the past 13 years, we have trusted them to keep us ahead of the curve and ahead of the competition,” said Bill Carhart, CEO of the Oswego New York-based Oswego County Federal Credit Union. “Their latest innovation, Text Concierge, has allowed us to communicate with our members on their terms and their schedule.”