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Tower Federal Credit Union’s MasterCard® Promotion Results in Substantial Increase in Transferred Balances

[Laurel, MD]— Tower Federal Credit Union’s MasterCard balance transfer promotion, which ran April 22, 2014 through August 8, 2014, resulted in a 75 percent increase in transferred balances over the same period in 2013.

During the 2014 promotional period, 921 Tower members transferred balances from other credit card companies to a Tower MasterCard. The number of transfers was 1,592—a 69 percent increase over the number of transfers during the same period in 2013. The total amount transferred topped $5.6 million.

Tower's balance transfer offer featured an introductory rate of 4.99% APR, good for 12 months from the date of the transfer, and no transfer fees. After 12 months, the rate converts to Tower's standard 10.9% APR. The promotion to members included targeted direct mails, e-mails and statement inserts, along with branch posters, on-hold phone messages, Web site banner ads, Home Banking login prompts and newsletter articles.

A large part of the promotion's success, says Jackie MacMannis, Tower's Product Planner for Lending, was Tower's MasterCard recapture program, which took place during the balance transfer promotion. Working in partnership with TransUnion, the recapture involved targeted marketing to over 36,000 Tower members. TransUnion selected the members based on creditworthiness and if they had a credit card with another financial institution. The target group received a letter from Tower that touted the balance transfer offer and the benefits of a Tower MasterCard. The letters were followed up with phone calls by branch and member service personnel.

The letters and calls netted over $2.6 million in transferred balances—nearly half of all balances transferred during the 3½ month promotional period.

The follow-up phone calls were key to the recapture program's success, MacMannis says. "Members who received a follow-up phone call after the mailing had a significantly higher response to the promotion than those who received only the mailing," she says. "Our members appreciated the personal touch of a phone call and realized the savings and value of transferring their high-rate balances to a Tower MasterCard for a lower interest rate and no transfer fees."

MacMannis says the balance transfer offer has been so popular with Tower members that it has been extended through the end of the year. Tower launched a second MasterCard recapture program of direct mailers and follow-up calls in mid-October.

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