2021 Credit Card Marketing Trends: Three Ways to Reach the Modern Consumer

September 15, 2021 by Theresa Nguyen

The accelerated shift to digital brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic has made a tremendous impact on consumer preferences and behaviors. Consumers have increased their online shopping due to the speed, ease, and convenience of contactless payments, and according to Jeff Metcalf, Senior Product Manager of Prospecting Solutions at Experian, are now expecting to interact with brands digitally. As a result, the battle to capture and engage consumers is growing fiercely competitive among credit card marketers.

Based on a recent report by Comperemedia Direct, credit card marketing activity experienced a significant decline at the beginning of the pandemic, averaging at around 55 million acquisition mailings compared to the pre-pandemic average of 300 million. Despite this decrease in marketing activity, the estimated volume of acquisition mailings climbed back up to pre-pandemic levels over the past year. According to Andrew Davidson, SVP, Chief Insights Officer of Comperemedia, we should anticipate this pace of credit card marketing to continue to accelerate.

As we enter an intense period of credit card marketing activity, major credit card issuers, such as American Express, Capital One, and Chase, have repositioned their products to align with the changing needs and lifestyles of their target audiences. From amplifying digital features in their card positioning to promoting partnerships and incentives through personalized messaging, credit card brands have made creative pivots to their marketing strategies to redefine their product differentiators and capture today’s consumer.

What does this aggressive period of credit card marketing mean for financial institutions? How can these institutions stand out in an increasingly crowded, competitive market?

To target and acquire the right consumers, here are three strategies financial institutions should consider:

  1. Maximize share of voice through targeted approaches

Because today’s consumers are now expecting to engage digitally with brands, it’s important for financial institutions to not only be seen and mentioned on the right digital channels, but to deliver content that will resonate with their specific audiences. By following this targeted, customer-centric approach, financial institutions can increase their share of voice and stand out from competitors.

  1. Seek new opportunities to provide value to customers

Changes in consumer needs and lifestyles provide great opportunities to deliver value to customers. Financial institutions that are open to pivoting their strategies to adapt to these changes are those that will succeed in attracting new customers and maintaining long-lasting relationships with existing ones.

  1. Amplify points of differentiation in their products and marketing

Before buying a product, consumers likely want to know more about the items they are purchasing and how they compare to different players in the market. To help set their products apart from other offerings, financial institutions should define their product’s key differentiators and convey them in a personalized and compelling manner.

Watch the 2021 Credit Marketing Trends webinar for a close look at successful credit card marketing campaigns and strategies to help improve your marketing ROI.

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