AmEx rewards Cardmembers for tweeting, and more
AmEx + Twitter = savings
On Mar. 6, American Express announced that it has launched a new Twitter promotion for its Cardmembers. If you register an eligible card, and then tweet using hashtags associated with certain special offers, “couponless savings are loaded directly to [your] synced Cards – no coupons, no print-outs,” according to a company press release. Confused? AmEx vice chairman Ed Gilligan explains:
American Express is turning Twitter content into commerce by connecting Cardmembers to merchants and delivering real world value to both. With the continued convergence of online and offline commerce, our closed loop continues to enable us to bring seamless, relevant ways to connect our Cardmembers and merchants on the most powerful social and digital platforms.
IPad app allows in-store credit card applications
Also on Mar. 6, U.S. Bank announced that it was trialing an iPad app that would allow shoppers to apply for its credit cards in stores. The bank provides merchants with the iPad and the app, and prospective customers can, according to a press release, “apply for and, if approved, receive on-the-spot credit to begin making purchases and earning rewards.” A trained store employee should be on hand to help technophobes with their applications.
Right now, the pilot only extends to Sport Chalet outlets, but could be rolled out if it proves a success.
Hyatt credit card with EMV chip launches
Those who travel a lot overseas and are fans of Hyatt Hotels are likely to love The Hyatt Credit Card, which is issued by Chase. Because it’s now the first among American hotel credit cards to come with an embedded EMV microprocessor (chip). The card retains its magnetic stripe so can still be used anywhere in this country, but that chip means that it should be accepted without problems anywhere in the world. Many US travelers have experienced issues when trying to swipe chipless cards overseas.
The product may be among the very best hotel credit cards for the right customer. It comes with a $75 annual fee, but offers generous rewards with no limit on the points that can be earned. As importantly for those who travel internationally, it charges zero foreign transaction fees.
MasterCard + mobile payments = the next billion customers?
MasterCard used the Mobile World Congress 2012 event in Barcelona, Spain to outline its vision for the future of mobile payments. And that vision includes a further billion customers. Sounds ambitious? Well, the company may have the building blocks in place already. In a press release, it revealed three existing programs in which it’s a partner:
- Wanda is set to deliver mobile payment solutions to 87 million South Americans.
- A partnership with Boku Inc. could allow those with MasterCard prepaid cards to “make payments, receive discounts and targeted offers, and monitor spending – all via their mobile phones anywhere MasterCard is accepted.”
- The company’s Mobile Money Partnership Program is intended to provide up to 2.5 billion of the unbanked around the world with the ability to access financial services through their mobile phones.
The times they are a-changin’ — for credit card companiesand their customers.
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