Money Moves

Card brings new privileges for women customers

By Elaine Chow

This is a fortnightly series of articles focusing on the banking and financial industries

Vincent Chiang, head of cards and unsecured loans, DBS Bank Hong Kong
Photo: Edve Leung

One financial institution has clearly done some in-depth research into who does the shopping and controls the family budget in most Hong Kong households! DBS Bank has just launched a special credit card - the DBS Woman's Card - offering the premium services and exclusive privileges available only to platinum cardholders or selected banking clients.

Speaking about the strategy and reasons behind the launch, Vincent Chiang, head of cards and unsecured loans for DBS Bank Hong Kong, says it is not something new in the market, but more a way of helping users consolidate their spending. "Currently, only five percent of all cards issued in the market are exclusively for women, so there is still a large area of opportunity to explore," he explains.

He believes that the new product, with its additional benefits, will not only encourage users to consolidate their expenses on a single credit card, but also allow them to manage their monthly spending more effectively by seeing everything on one statement. Mr Chiang is confident that, once users appreciate these extra benefits, it will result in a lift in average spending of 25 to 35 percent.

A series of special promotions will be arranged to attract and reward new customers. There will be a lucky draw each month for a GIA certified diamond, and prizes of three Mini Coopers will be on offer as the marketing highlights of 2005. Cardholders will also be able to win free spa packages from the Oriental Spa if they spend over HK$30,000 in a year.

In addition to those incentives, cardholders will be entitled to an exclusive range of concierge services. By dialling just one number, they can make reservations for restaurants, spas and beauty treatments, and get information about housekeeping services, locksmiths and planning private parties. Previously these benefits were available exclusively with the most prestigious platinum cards.

For the first distinctive phase of the marketing campaign, the bank has appointed movie heartthrob Daniel Wu to appear in television and other advertising. The campaign has already kicked off on local TV and cable channels, in cinemas, newspapers and women's magazines, and on the promotional website Outdoor advertising is set to appear on cross-harbour buses and in prominent locations around Hong Kong.

The second stage of the campaign will involve a round of "midnight shopping" promotions for customers before the end of the first quarter. Privileges will be extended to cardholders during pre-sale periods, allowing them to shop by invitation at the best boutiques and high-end department stores in town.

With this new initiative, DBS Bank is aiming to issue 100,000 cards in 2005, with 60 to 70 percent to brand-new customers and the balance to existing cardholders. As the third largest issuer of cards in Hong Kong, with one million already "in the market", Mr Chiang believes the target is certainly achievable.

Taken from Career Times 28 January 2005, p. 2
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