Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Who's applying for credit cards?

In talking to my friends and colleagues in the direct marketing industry, the story remains the same. We're all seeing a definite slow-down. Our clients aren't doing as much as last year. Coupled with declining marketing activity, the industry continues to consolidate (see last weeks' announcement of Acxiom purchasing ChoicePoint's Database Marketing unit which has caused a round of lay-offs).

The credit card industry typically relies heavily on direct marketing strategies to acquire new customers. I definitely think that today's banking issues (which I won't even attempt to get into here....) are a big part of what is hurting the DM industry. Found this research that shows how the mix of credit card applications has drastically changed since last year on the DMA's website.

Total Credit Card Applications Submitted Online

Date: Q1 2007 vs. Q1 2008

Total US – Home/Work/University Locations
Source: comScore Online Credit Card Acquisition Benchmarker

Number of Applications Submitted Online

Applicant Type*

Q1 2007

Q1 2008

Percent Change













*Subprime defined as individuals having the equivalent of a FICO score of 660 or less;

Prime defined as individuals having the equivalent of a FICO score greater than 660.

The research was conducted by ComScore, Inc., a leader in measuring the digital world.

The fact that the number of subprime apps submitted is rising and prime dramatically falling really is a sign of these scary economic times.

I welcome input on how your business is running. What are you doing to survive, and perhaps even thrive in this economy?

1 comment:

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