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Key Opportunities for Issuers to Engage Consumers on EMV

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Building on the lesson that I wrote about last month about EMV migration (get the education piece right, and you’ll pave the way for a faster, smoother migration to EMV and contactless payments), I’d like to address an important set of players in the payment ecosystem: card issuers.

There are a few built-in touch points during a card lifecycle that provide issuers with terrific opportunities to engage consumers in the EMV conversation:

Acquiring a customer: Issuers continually pour resources into acquiring new customers, and savvy issuers are using these marketing efforts to highlight the innovative appeal of EMV cards.  For some consumers, the “new” factor and gadget-like appeal of chip cards means that the first EMV card to get into a consumer’s hand is likely to become top of wallet.  In fact, EMV cards may be the largest opportunity we’ve seen in years to win over new customers based on card innovation.

Issuing the card: The perfect moment to educate cardholders on EMV.  This is perhaps the most critical point in the consumer’s journey towards using EMV.  If a consumer doesn’t understand EMV or becomes skeptical of the card’s security, they may be hesitant to use it.  Make your cardholder confident in EMV, and you will not only head towards top-of-wallet, you’ll build trust and strengthen the relationship with your customer.

First use:  A chance to reward your customer for using their new EMV card, while ensuring that the experience was enjoyable and reinforcing EMV education.  Did the consumer use the card for a contact-only transaction?  Then this may be the right time to engage in a contactless conversation.

While all of the stakeholders in the U.S. will need to do their part to educate consumers, issuers have an immense opportunity to educate consumers before they hit the stores.  This could go a long way towards building enthusiasm for EMV and paving the way for a smooth and swift transition to contactless payments.

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