These days standing out in the mailbox requires an extra special touch of creativity, and that’s exactly what Discover is hoping will work with its newest credit card direct mail campaign. Starting last month, Discover began mailing Hallmark-branded greeting cards to prospects with offers for the Discover it credit card, but strategically positioned the mailing as a heart-felt correspondence.

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Not only do these offers come in brightly colored envelopes with hand-written looking fonts, but some even have stickers on the back across the seal. Multiple versions of these cards have been observed, but the general message within each card is an introduction to Discover, including the bank’s “generous cash back rewards and real human customer service.” While continuing to reference the bank’s “we treat you like you’d treat you” slogan, each card also includes a more unique message that relates to the card’s overall theme. Inside the card Discover has inserted additional information about the card offer and the required Schumer box.

This strategy is an innovative approach that aligns with a movement captured in Mintel Trend ‘Switch Off,’ which recognizes that consumers may be feeling overwhelmed by today’s hyper-connected society and they are looking for ways to temporarily disconnect. Discover’s greeting card approach responds to the desire many consumers have to disconnect from the digital world and engage with those around them. According to Mintel’s US report on family entertainment, two in five US consumers say that getting their family to spend time together is a struggle, and two in three Millennials say that they spend too much time “connected.”

Just one third of US financial services consumers feel like a valued customer.

In Mintel Comperemedia’s latest Discover Marketing Strategy Review, it’s noted that Discover is continuing to focus on growing its brand awareness and presenting itself as an outsider bank – a friend, not an institution. This comes at a very crucial time as we start to see other brands, such as SoFi, also differentiate themselves from the industry and create new reputations that differ from the stereotypical bank persona.

According to Mintel’s Consumers and the Economic Outlook report, three in five consumers are satisfied with their current financial institution; however, only a third feel valued as a customer. This illustrates a significant opportunity for brands to try to leverage that satisfaction and engage their customers in ways that will make them feel more valued, and really foster a long-term relationship.

Finding ways to generate interest at first glance is going to give a brand that extra advantage that it needs to cut through the clutter and truly stand out in the mailbox.

Lily Harder is the Vice President of Research for Mintel Comperemedia. Lily specializes in the financial services industry, researching and presenting on the latest industry trends, competitive intelligence insights and newsworthy developments.

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