Banking executives have evaluated countless marketing campaigns to deploy each year to build trust and lasting relationships amongst existing customer bases and attract new customers. But what about evaluating the use of celebrities to build stronger relationships within ethnic communities? This is the focus of a recent American Banker article that examines how top credit card companies like MasterCard and Visa are leveraging celebrities to do just that.
So what celebrities have been brought into the fold? American Banker’s Andrew McKenna writes that Chris Gardner, whose life was played out on the silver screen by Will Smith in “The Pursuit of Happyness,” was tapped to begin conducting financial education seminars in African American communities throughout the country. Visa began using Mexican Soccer Star Claudio Suarez to MC financial literacy programs throughout the Hispanic community.
Why are companies taking these steps to build better relations to try and earn the trust of these customer segments? According to McKenna’s article, “Hispanics are 40 percent likelier than non-Hispanics to be uncomfortable entrusting their money to a bank, and more than a third of Hispanics in the U.S. pay bills with cash only, according to Mintel research.”
However, this is not the first effort credit card companies have made to engage with multicultural communities. McKenna references MasterCard’s efforts two years ago to create a partnership with Spanish media company, Univision, spurring a new Univision MasterCard pre-paid card.
Is your FI participating in any similar programs? Leave us a comment below.