More Americans are familiar with 529 plans this year than last year, but three-quarters of them still do not know that the investment product funds college costs, according to a new survey by the College Savings Plans Network (CSPN), a national non-profit association headquartered in Washington, D.C.

Using Survey Monkey, Bozell recruited 2,034 respondents through social media invitations to take the CSPN National Awareness Benchmark Research Survey. Participants took the online survey in December.

One-third of respondents (35%) said they had heard of 529 plans, but only one in four knew that a 529 plan was related to education. Still, that percentage represents an increase of 4% since the launch of a national awareness campaign nine months ago, with the aim of making “529” a term as recognizable as “401(k),” CSPN said.

Despite the hurdle plan administrators face in raising public awareness of a financial product that can fund a child’s education, CSPN reported that last year, the total number of 529 accounts grew to 14.25 million, and the total amount invested increased 20% – a record amount.

“Even at a time like this, the growth in the college savings movement is worth celebrating," Young Boozer, chair of the campaign, said in a news release. “With so many families faced with a different economic reality now, this is the summer of ‘do what you can.’”