Nearly irresistible interest rates, good for the life of the transferred balance, helped power TNB Card Services client credit unions to a highly successful balance transfer promotion, with impressive response rates and sizable movement of balances onto their credit union credit cards.
The recent promotion, in which 33 credit unions participated, reached out to qualified cardholding members, and yielded $5.3 million in transferred balances. That is a 35 percent increase over the total amount of balances transferred in a similar promotion in 2006. The average amount transferred per cardholder across all the participating credit unions was more than $4,300.
The TNB-managed promotion gave credit unions a choice of seven different annual percentage rates, from 0 to 5.9 percent, with the option to extend three of those rates – 1.9, 3.9, and 5.9 percent – over the life of the transferred balance. It was the life of balance option that had great appeal for cardholders, driving some of the highest response rates in the promotion.
Two of the credit unions that were top performers in the promotion were First Financial Federal Credit Union of Wall, New Jersey, and San Antonio City Employees Federal Credit Union of San Antonio, Texas.
For First Financial FCU, it was the first balance transfer promotion ever, since its former processor didn’t offer them, and its first promotion with TNB since moving its card processing to TNB in 2006. The credit union was thrilled with the positive response.
“It was fantastic,” said Jane Wittman-Roll, vice president of marketing for First Financial FCU. “We didn’t have any historical data to measure against, so we wanted to at least hit the industry average. We were hoping for a 1 percent to 1.5 percent response, and we far exceeded that.”
The credit union generated a response rate of 4.12 percent, with the average cardholder transferring $4,807. First Financial FCU offered a 5.9 percent life of balance rate, and saw a total transfer of more than $475,000.
“We attribute our success to the life of balance rate plus the fact we have been aggressively rebranding our credit union in the last year,” Wittman-Roll said. “We think our members are really starting to take notice of our products and services.”
First Financial FCU, a community credit union, serves Monmouth and Ocean counties in New Jersey through six branches. The 71-year-old institution changed its name from Mon-Oc FCU to First Financial in mid-2006, at the same time it moved its processing to TNB. The 32,000-member credit union has assets of $180 million.
San Antonio City Employees FCU generated an average response rate of 6.51 percent, with an average balance transfer of $5,985, for a total of more than $1.5 million transferred. It offered two rate choices – 3.9 percent life of balance and 5.9 percent life of balance. The response rate to the 3.9 percent offer was 8.97 percent, with an average transfer of $7,039. Response to the 5.9 percent offer was 4.03 percent, with an average transfer of $3,619.
“This promotion definitely exceeded our expectations,” said Tim F. Haegelin, president and CEO for San Antonio City Employees FCU. “The low rate incentives were a plus, and it was a timely promotion, since interest rates were starting to go up.”
San Antonio City Employees FCU, a longtime TNB processing client, serves anyone who lives, works, worships, or goes to school in Bexar County, Texas. It has 43,878 members and assets of $307 million.
About TNB Card Services
TNB Card Services, owned and directed by credit unions since 1976, provides electronic payments processing, as well as an agent issuing solution for credit unions nationwide. Serving more than 500 financial institutions and managing more than 1.8 million cards, Dallas-based TNB enables credit unions to enhance member loyalty through credit union-branded card products. For more information about TNB, go to HYPERLINK “www.tnbcard.com”_www.tnbcard.com_ or call Dusty Bowers at 1-800-422-0733 ext. 6555.