Credit card direct mail volumes are on the rise and taking charge of the mailbox once again.
There was a 15% increase in credit card direct mail offers from the first six months of 2012 to the same period in 2013 according to market research firm Mintel Comperemedia. The top six credit card mailers during the first half of 2013 included American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, Citibank, and Discover. These companies mailed more than 2.4 billion direct mail packages combined. Each mailed more than 225 million direct mail packages during that time.
Credit card companies are also increasing their incentives to entice new customers. According to a recent article in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the best rewards are reserved not only for customers with good to excellent credit, but also for customers who use their cards a lot. The transaction fees for heavy users are attractive to card issuers.
Curtis Arnold, founder of the credit card website Cardratings.com, recommends the following advice to consumers: “Start looking at the offers …chances are there are much better cards out there than the one you have. If you can get a no-fee offer with zero percent interest for 12 months, jump on that because it’s pretty rare.” Other credit card offer trends include $100 checks, bonus miles and zero percent balance transfer offers.
A recent article in the Wall Street Journal entitled, “Zero Worship: Credit-Card Firms Compete With No-Interest Transfers,” talked about the increase in balance transfer offers from major credit card companies. As Americans pay down their credit card debt, issuers are looking to Balance Transfers (BTs) as an alternative way to generate revenue. Supporting this finding, Comperemedia data shows a 28% year-over-year increase in BT offers.
Consumers will be comparing credit card offers, so consider the following incentives to increase your credit card direct mail response rates:
- Get your mail piece noticed by affixing a card with an incentive like zero percent interest for 12 months. Remember to include your phone number or website as a call to action. To further increase response rates and ROI, personalize the card specifically to the intended prospect so he or she feels a special offer is in hand.
- Use an eye-catching check format such as a “pre-approved” or “pre-qualified” check in the dollar amount of the potential balance transfer. Like a personalized card, the call to action is important. A phone number, email address and/or website – even a personalized URL (PURL) – all make it quick and easy for potential customers to get in touch or learn more about the offer.
- Engage in cross-channel marketing. This can be done in a variety of ways, but it’s important to identify how your potential customers want to receive or request information. Some may want a phone conversation, while others will prefer online/social media interaction. Regardless of channel, multiple touch points are always a good strategy.
Follow our recommended best practices and use a trending incentive to take charge of your credit card direct mail offers.
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