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First USA, New York Life Go Platinum, Credit Card Gives Insurance Compan Access to Customers !

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By Mark McLaughlin One of the nation's largest credit card issuers has expanded its partnership relationship by introducing a platinum card with one of the world's largest insurance companies. The New ork Life !latinum "isa #ard$ issued by %irst &'($ is being offered to a segment of the company's life insurance policy holders solely through direct marketing. ( direct mail effort dropped in late )ecember$ and the card will be promoted on the New ork Life corporate *eb site at +*e ha,e launched with a preappro,ed offer$+ said Thomas Nowlin$ senior ,ice president for financial institutions marketing at %irst &'($ *ilmington$ )-. +( credit card opportunity allows New ork Life to communicate on a monthly basis with policy holders$ which they're not doing. .t can also cross/promote their other products.'' New ork Life corporate ,ice president Mark Lonnegren said the company will market products and ser,ices to its policy holders through messaging in monthly statements and special inserts. +*e're excited to increase brand recognition$'' Lonnegren said. +( billboard in people's wallets will be beneficial to our business. .t should generate goodwill among policy holders.'' New ork Life has offered a "isa card to its policy holders since 0122$ but the new platinum card is considered an upgrade to a higher le,el of ser,ice. The no/annual fee card will feature a low introductory annual percentage rate of 3.1 for fi,e months and then go to a standard (!4 of 05.11. (ll current card holders will automatically recei,e the platinum card as a replacement. .n addition$ using the New ork Life file$ %irst &'( conducts credit re,iews and mails out preappro,ed applications to other 6ualified policy holders as well. %or the New ork Life account$ %irst &'( contracted out the list to database manager )atabase (merica$ Mont,ale$ N7$ and handled the design and printing of the application package in/house. +*e're ,iewing it as a sign of loyalty to our current 8policy holders9$'' Lonnegren said. #ertain future policy holders also could be selected to recei,e the offer. %irst &'($ an affiliate of Banc One #orp.$ #olumbus$ O:$ is the third largest pro,ider of "isa$ Master#ard and pri,ate label credit cards in the &nited 'tates with 3;.3 million cards issued and <52.1 billion in outstanding loans. !artnerships with financial institutions are a huge part of their business. The creditor began forming partnerships in 012= and now has more than 0$>;; agreements$ which make up 5; to 3; percent of the company's new business. %irst &'( issues credit cards on behalf of ?;; retail banks and has partnerships with in,estment banks Merrill Lynch and -dward 7ones and mortgage lenders #ountrywide :ome Loans$ :omeside Lending and #apstead Mortgage. +%or all of our partners$ an excellent credit offer is a nice ,alue/added offer that they won't recei,e from anyone else$'' Nowlin said. +(nd again when it comes from New ork Life$ it enhances ,alue perception policy holders ha,e with them.'' These partnerships$ which also include agreements with (merica Online$ 'outhwest (irlines$ :oliday @.nnA :ospitality$ ((4! and :onda Motorcycle$ are the cornerstone of the strategy of segmentation that %irst &'( uses to target and attract new cardholders. +The primary benefit is to le,erage the brand e6uity of a product name$'' Nowlin said. +The extent of additional segmentation certainly enhances the o,erall marketing effort$ but with insurance companies 8like New ork Life9 it's more difficult to obtain this information.'' Lonnegren said the card will not be used to prospect for customers. That traditional function will be left to New ork Life agents
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