Visa’s New Platform Gives Issuers A Marketing Boost

Visa wants to make it a bit easier for the smaller issuers to get their fair share in the consumer marketplace.

Visa announced yesterday (Oct. 21) the launch of a new platform designed to help small- and medium-sized card issuers market and grow their businesses from a marketing perspective.

Visa Integrated Marketing Solutions (VIMS) aims to help those card issuers leverage data and insights that help boost their performance and profitability. The VIMS platform also helps those issuers develop and employ marketing services for a customer’s lifecycle — which includes everything from acquiring new customers to retaining customers.

PYMNTS spoke with Jessica Graham, VP of Visa Performance Solutions, about the benefits for issuers that are engaged in the platform.

“The main opportunity on the business platform is to enable issuers to tap into a unique asset that Visa delivers, which is our data, and bring that to bear to really drive campaign results,” Graham said. “Targeting is really critical in terms of the results that you generate from all kinds of marketing. We wanted to enable them to gain more efficiency by tapping into the Visa data and being able to leverage it to its fullest extent in their marketing programs, thereby enabling them to do more.”

While Graham said there weren’t any specific timing considerations for launching the platform, it does fall just a few weeks after the EMV liability shift went into effect for merchants, and as issuers have experienced, replacing those payment cards comes at an expense to issue the cards and market why they are important. Graham pointed to how issuers are often bogged down with allocating resources, leaving the company with limited funds for marketing themselves.

“We also know that issuers, in particular, regional smaller issuers, really struggle with the resources to be able to do all the things that they want to do. EMV is a good example. A lot of our clients spent a decent amount of resources preparing for EMV and chip migration, and as a result were spread too thin when it came to really maximizing their ability to do marketing. This platform will serve them well during times when they have to reallocate resources to do other things. And we’ll be able to do marketing on their behalf,” she said.

Speaking toward the digital side, she also spoke to how the platform helps issuers factor in offers like Visa Checkout into their business initiatives.

“Digital top of wallet is definitely something we’ll be helping issuers achieve through the platform. It’s definitely a priority. This platform will also allow issuers to have access to channels that they normally wouldn’t ordinarily have access to. So we’ll allow them to test into, for example, digital channels, including email, social, search engine — marketing that perhaps they don’t have the resources or expertise, the data, or the ability to tap into outside of the platform.” 

Through VISM, its issuing clients can tap into its marketing capabilities to offer an end-to-end platform that is tailored to their own business needs. Card issuers and their partners can use Visa’s network data to gain insights from more than 100 billion transactions that flow through the Visa network annually, along with third-party data like lifestyle and economic stats from their clientele. Issuers who use the VISM receive detailed reporting and analysis that reflects their return on investment.

“This new offering leverages the power of the Visa network to enable our issuing partners to more effectively target and market to customers, members and prospects,” said Doug Leighton, head of community accounts at Visa. “With unique insights that only Visa can provide, we can help our clients identify the best customers, drive higher levels of engagement, drive loyalty with cardholders and deploy their marketing dollars more efficiently.”

Perks of VIMS, as pointed out by Visa, include: campaign design and strategy; targeting, segmentation and list development; offers and creative design; campaign execution across channels; and tracking/reporting of campaign results.

VIMS, which is available to any Visa issuer in the United States, launched its first campaign in late September. The platform will include expanded digital and social media marketing capabilities, and other new features including multi-lingual marketing in 2016.

“Visa is committed to helping improve performance and profitability of each of its financial institution partners,” said Hasan A. Malik, the global head of Visa Performance Solutions. “Our team draws upon Visa’s extensive payments industry experience and the latest marketing best practices to come up with solutions tailored to clients’ needs.”

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