Direct Marketing, Mail Order, and E-commerce News from the National Mail Order Association

Direct Marketing and Mail Order Association
                                        Newsletter Sponsor
Shopping Cart, Advertising Management and Affiliate Tracking System

Credit Card Companies Change their Direct Mail Strategy

Credit card companies want people to spend more, do more with cards they already have

CHICAGO--Credit card issuers are changing their tune. Instead of using direct mail just to lure in new customersas has been done in the pastthey have begun using it more to connect with current cardholders.

Mintel Comperemedia reports that the number of credit card direct mailings sent to non-customers dropped 11% from 2006 to 2007. However, loyalty credit card offers, sent only to current customers, increased 16% during that time. Loyalty credit card offers encourage cardholders to use their cards by advertising services and benefits such as balance transfers, convenience checks and bonus rewards.

With direct mail response rates stagnant and the credit market under pressure, credit card companies are realizing that blanketing Americans with unsolicited offers wont work, comments Lisa Hronek, senior research analyst at Mintel. Leading issuers are restrategizing and looking back to customers theyve already won. Theyre getting more specific with direct mail offers and focusing on what their clients actually want from their cards.

As companies look into what makes people spend on their credit cards, they have changed the focus of their loyalty mailings. In 2005, the majority (56%) of credit card offers sent to current cardholders advertised balance transfers or convenience checks. But by 2007, these types of offers lost out to direct mail pieces promoting non-card products, such as bonus points or rewards. In 2007, 57% of direct mail sent to current customers advertised such non-card products.

Both balance transfers/convenience checks and non-card promotions can get cardholders spending to accrue a balance. However, the transactions for balance transfers and convenience checks are a one-time deal; they may not encourage the cardholder to keep spending. Much more effective at increasing usage are non-card promotions such as bonus points or online incentives. These encourage cardholders to use their cards repeatedly to achieve a desired reward.

Credit card companies have realized they must constantly engage cardholders to keep them loyal and interested, states Hronek. By truly focusing on clients needs and desires, issuers can almost ensure greater card usage. Emphasizing loyalty over acquisition is a new frontier for credit card direct mail marketing, but it will prove profitable in the competitive market environment.

About Mintel

Mintel is a leading global supplier of consumer, product and media intelligence. For more than 35 years, Mintel has provided insight into key worldwide trends, offering unique data that directly impacts client success. Mintel Comperemedia is a competitive media monitoring service that analyzes direct mail, email and print advertising trends. With offices in Chicago, London, Belfast, Sydney and Shanghai, Mintel has forged a unique reputation as a world-renowned business brand. For more information on Mintel, please visit

Newsletter Sponsors

Email Marketing Management Software Wholesale Color Printing and Mailing Marketing Management Tools for Small Business Direct Mail Advertising and Mailing Lists Live Chat for Websites
Marketing with articles the easy way

Useful Direct Marketing and Mail Order Links.

Advertising- Bridal Market Advertising Guide

Advertising- Christian Market Advertising Guide

Advertising- Hispanic/Latino Market Advertising Guide

Advertising- Hispanic/Latino Market Advertising Guide- Master Series

Advertising- Home Furnishing and Decor Advertising Guide

Advertising- Home Gardening Advertising Guide

Advertising- Parenting Market Advertising Guide

Advertising-Pet Market Advertising Guide

Advertising- Woman's Market Advertising Guide

Advertising- How to Create Great Small Business Advertising

Call Centers- Telephone Order Taking Services

Catalogs- Catalog and E-commerce Benchmarks

Catalogs- The Catalog Strategists Toolkit

Catalogs- Directory of Mail Order Catalogs

Catalogs- Top 150 Catalogs in the United States

Classified Advertising- How to Market using Classified Ads

Direct Mail- Copywriters and Creative Services Guide

Direct Mail- Directory of Major Direct Mailers

Direct Mail- Inside Direct Mail Newsletter

Direct Marketing- Direct Marketing Seminars and Events

Direct Marketing- Direct Marketing Statistics

Direct Marketing- Direct Marketing Response Rates

Direct Marketing- Direct Marketing Toolkit

Direct Marketing- Industry Contact Directory

Direct Marketing- Direct Marketing Speakers

Fulfillment- Warehouse and Order Fulfillment Centers

Mailing Lists- Direct Mail and E-mail Lists

New Products for Direct Marketers to Sell

Product Marketing- Promote your Product to Catalog and Direct Marketing Companies.

Product Marketing- How to Market a Product for Under $500

Start a Home Based Mail Order Business- Direct Marketing Toolkit

Wholesale and Drop Shipping- Professional Wholesale Resource Guide

Wholesale Search Engine

Direct Marketing and Mail Order Bookstore

National Mail Order Association Home

Direct Marketing Article Archive