JP Morgan Chase Goes After Campus Market

This is from Rob Walker at the NY Times Magazine a few weeks back. A story on how JP Morgan Chase is using facebook in order to get student customers for its credit cards. Their +1 program offers credit course (which you get ‘karma’ points for taking) and ‘karma’ points for paying on time. Moreover, “these points can be disposed of only within Facebook: either spent at a special store (White Stripes’ “Icky Thump”: 10 points; Ticketmaster gift card: 35 points; Facebook T-shirt: 10 points), donated to one of several designated charities or given to other Facebook members.”

Here are some stats on one element of the campus as market, “by one count, more than 75 percent of undergraduates wind up having at least one credit card. And those young cardholders, on average, carry an estimated balance of more than $2,100 each — which, along with stacks of direct-mail solicitations, may explain why card issuers have a campus credibility problem. Nevertheless, a year after its debut, the Chase +1 Facebook group has nearly 34,000 members. This puts it in the upper ranks of the 190 or so “sponsored” groups, in the company of American Eagle and the Dave Matthews Band Summer Tour.”


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