Pitch Perfect Every Time: New & Improved Catholic United Compelling Story 

In the Spring of 2021, Catholic United embarked on getting its story straight. Not that it was wrong or didn’t make sense, it just wasn’t being shared or repeated the same way—everyone in the organization had their own spin. This is natural and to be expected. In the marketing world, this “story” has many names: an elevator pitch, elevator speech, defining statement, legacy statement, first pitch. The Catholic United marketing team decided to tell the story of our organization by surveying everyone in it. They gathered more than 90 responses, and each story was different.

“There were themes, but every respondent had their own unique story,” said Steve Wendorf, Marketing Director. “There was some passion behind their stories–and, believe me, everyone thought theirs was the best. We had a huge challenge on our hands.”

How Do You Combine 90 Stories into One Repeatable Message?

Just like a choir at church, Catholic United wants everyone singing off the same sheet of music so they can be pitch perfect.

“We have an exceptional story to tell, we just need everyone telling the exact same story over and over again,” stated Mike Ahles, President and CEO. “We kid around that we should buy a national ad for the big game and reach millions with one message, one time. Unfortunately, it is just a tad out of our price range. Instead, we think we can get it done by enlisting our members, vendors, employees, family and friends to spread the word. It can be done one-on-one or on social media to accomplish the same thing with better, more personalized results, and it won’t cost us $5 million dollars.”

Perfecting the Pitch

The marketing department at Catholic United teamed up with Bonsai, our sales and marketing consultant firm, and started the winnowing process by combining themes, key words and messages. They then added insights from research conducted by the American Fraternal Alliance, our trade industry organization. The Alliance had done some consumer research on what words resonated with our key audiences. Words and themes like “not-for-profit, giving back, and member-owned” are more valued and create a meaningful connection with people. We’re happy with the result but we need your help. See below.


Catholic United is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial services company, connecting people of faith, protecting their future and generously impacting parishes, schools and communities.


How Can You Help?

Memorize the story. Repeat the story and help us live the story—every day. Give an MVP type effort not once but over and over to your friends, family, even pets! Share on social media and more. When we band together, we can do remarkable things.