Credit Direct as a Social Enterprise… The Brand.. The Persona

Credit Direct as a Social Enterprise- The Brand, The Persona.

Human-to-human connections are the heart and soul of a business. Put simply, business occurs when an individual or group of people deliberately provide services that eases the life of another person in a profitable manner. A business is about solving problems, alleviating pain points, creating a rapport with consumers, and providing delightful customer experiences. Profit only comes when a sound business model is matched with a positive customer experience. At Credit Direct Limited, the knowledge of what business is truly about is what wakes us up daily, motivates us to join the early morning rush, sit in the road rage patiently with a simple purpose to arrive at the office as early as possible to serve our esteemed customers.

Our passion to serve is what propels the sales team to beat the torturous weathers of Sokoto, Gombe and Katsina States and meander through the slippery footpaths of riverine areas in Bayelsa and Rivers States in search of more Nigerians to solve their financial challenges. The joy and amazement on the faces of customers when they get credited with the requested loans within few hours is what motivates our management to workday and night strategizing new ways to make the business meet its promise and deliver a phenomenal experience to customers. Even though the Credit Direct team may get held up in traffic for long hours in Lagos, travel across the country to visit stakeholders or put themselves in harm’s way walking the streets up North seeking another customer to assist, our duty to serve and care for our customers brings fulfillment to everyone in our value chain.

At Credit Direct, we are a long chain of professionals, bond together by one mission – we enable Peace of Mind. The fact that majority of Nigerians still find it difficult to access credit at the point of emergencies motivates us to think deeply about how to solve this critical socio-economic problem. There are the loopholes to fill, there are openings to fix, there are needs to meet, and fortunately there is Credit Direct to meet those needs.

The Credit Direct Brand is all about meeting the needs of those who were uncared for and those with genuine need for money but could not be accommodated not because of any fault of theirs but because the neglect was widespread and deep, because the divide between the affluent and mass market was deliberate to ensure there is always a second class category whenever it is decision making time. Credit Direct continuously disrupt the space and does what a lot of people including experts believe and consider “IMPOSSIBLE” to achieve, what industry legends regarded as a definite loss of revenue and reputation if ventured into. In fact, when we started, 6 months our proposal stayed in the hands of top business executives and government officials and the verdict was “try this at your own peril” why was that the narrative and how did we change the narrative to a winning one? The answer is simple, because the idea was not for “profit” or “loss”. It was not set up for the Balance Sheet figures at the end of every financial year, it was not set up for big board meetings and extravagant Annual General Meetings, it was set up to put smiles on the faces of salaried employees who are real economic actors in the theatre called Nigeria. To bring peace and fulfilment to a father whose child laid on the sick bed and would not be attended to till he makes a deposit. For the mother who toils daily yet cannot afford to pay the fees of the child and he is driven from school on the first day of the third term examination just because her salary had not yet been paid. For the hardworking civil servant whose rent is due, and the landlord has pasted the eviction notice with a short timeline. Now those are the real heroes we were born to help, and yes, we have created a long list of promoters across territories who never knew their potentials till they got their loans on the same day and sometime instantly.

I can never forget the story of a dear customer who came into one of our branches in the North, crying and sobbing that his only son lies sick on the hospital bed and needs to make a payment for immediate surgery or else he would die, he begged and pleaded for a loan, we sat him down and comforted him, gave him a form to complete and requested a few documents to complete the loan request process which he hurriedly left to get the requested documents. He returned in 2 hours and after submission, he sat there waiting, obviously with tons of scenarios playing out in his mind, he paced all round the banking hall muttering prayers under his breathe and at about 3:45pm same day he got an alert, he screamed so loud it caused a stare and with a happy heart, he knelt down in appreciation. For us that was the goal, that is satisfaction. We had fulfilled our purpose that day.

Credit Direct went unchallenged in the unsecured consumer finance space for over 4 years (April 2007 to December 2011) and recognized as one of the best performing companies across all business performance indicators. This is a clear evidence to what a company that puts customer satisfaction before profit can achieve in a world of business previously considered to be a one-way ticket to bankruptcy. Our success has inspired others to follow in our footstep, increasing competition in the unsecured lending market. We encourage competition because for us the idea is not to monopolize the market but to solve a socio-economic need. So, while others try to outcompete us, we expand our customer base simply by caring and connecting deeper with our customers. We organized stakeholder’s forum, engagement sessions, understood our customers better and then made heavy investment in Corporate Social Responsibility. We upgraded schools and provided adequate learning tools for students, we provided free health checks for our customers, we trained our customers (Teachers and professionals) on entrepreneurial skills and service, we granted scholarships to students who excelled in their studies as a motivation to others to ensure that they level up and to show that there is reward for hardwork. We provided learning materials and sponsored people living with Disabilities in our own little ways. We sponsored events and projects that help create value for those who truly need our support. Doing all these bring smiles to our customers and we look forward to doing even more as each year pass by.

While we invest in our customers, we are also particular about our staff “our greatest assets” who ensure the brand is fully expressed along the fabric of the country from North to South, from East to West, through the shore lines of the Niger Delta to the Rocky terrains of the north. Indeed, we have the best team ever. The fact that you can leverage staff who are promoters to sell your products and exceed the needs of the customer gives you double assurance that you have built a business and a product that is wholesome.

Our unique way of doing business has endeared us to millions of customers around the country who are the heartbeat of the Credit Direct family. We have created a brand persona that resonates within the industry, we just don’t grant loans we enable PEACE OF MIND.

Our customers are the stars in our epic story, we are only the supporting character.

We are Credit Direct Limited, Nigeria’s Number One Unsecured Consumer Finance Lenders.

Joseph Osodi writes in from our Brand Marketing and Communications desk of Credit Direct Limited.

Do you need quick loans? Do you have an emergency and need a loan? Do you need online loans in Lagos? Call us today on 01 4482225 or send an email to CDLmarketing@fcmb.com.

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