Card Loyalty Programs Lag at Credit Unions
A white paper published by Card Services for Credit Unions reported that only 50% of credit unions have loyalty or rewards programs attached to the credit or debit cards.
CSCU is the association of credit unions that process card transactions with FIS and actively promotes FIS' rewards program called ScoreCard. But Bill Lehman, FIS vice president for portfolio consulting, said the white paper was directed at the topic of loyalty rewards and the fact that too many credit unions still do not use them.
“Points can be used to help drive all sorts of things,” Lehman said. “One thousand points can increase card activation or initial card use or balance transfers.” And the days when points can be redeemed for only merchandise or miles or cash have passed, he added. Now rewards programs can be set up to allow members to redeem points for lower interest rates on loans or other services as well as to reward other sorts of behaviors, such as making loan payments on time or using a website to make payments rather than the branch or checks.
These sorts of relationship rewards, like all rewards programs, are fairly inexpensive to implement, but can take additional time that other rewards programs do not.