Communication is the key in any relationship—personal and business alike. Fortunately, available research in the business world can help make communication between consumers and merchants more effective. These insights are likely the reason the EMV® migration has been so effective, particularly for certain groups.
Issuance does not equal communication
Organizations such as the Smart Card Alliance formed groups like the EMV Migration Forum (EMF), where volunteers evaluated and developed the standards for EMV along with the best methods for communicating the EMV shift to cardholders.
Regardless of the available communication resources, even the issuers with the most EMV chip cards in the market find that many cardholders have never used their new cards and don’t know why they need them. Meanwhile, smaller regional institutions may have a lower penetration, but a higher percentage of cardholders who know what EMV is and how to use their cards.
What is the cause of the difference?
The discrepancy is a result of the types of interactions issuers have with their cardholders. The issuers with more interactive and engaging communication through mobile banking, websites, in-branch teller communication, and—interestingly enough—text messaging, were more successful than those who only educated their customers through their card carriers.
This makes sense. Research shows that people need constant, and relevant, reminders for messages to really break through.
The EMF has developed a best practice communication strategy to use with cardholders during the migration. The organization recommends rolling out three specific communication rounds as the implementation progresses: the pre-issuance phase (about six months before issuing EMV cards), the during-issuance phase, and the post-issuance phase.
What is just as important as when
Keep in mind that cardholders are a wide variety of people—from tech savvy 20-somethings to grandparents who need a bit more handholding to acclimate to technology shifts.
It is important to explain the benefits of the new cards and the reasons behind the switch, as well as how to use the card in ways each demographic understands in order to educate consumers and ease any anxieties.
Watch Card Chat: EMV® Communication Best Practices to learn more about a successful EMV migration.
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