The appeal of charity-linked cards

  • By Christine St Anne

A number of banks have introduced card offerings with charity links and the initiative could resonate with people, particularly the younger cohort. 

Recently Defence Bank launched a credit card that would give back to Veterans and support better mental health

Defence Bank will donate half of the annual fee of the $45 to the Defence Bank Foundation. 

The foundation supports the Defence Community Dogs program which provides assistance dogs at no cost to Veterans. 

Under the program, rescue and re-homed dogs are trained in correctional facilities before being presented to veterans, and supports them with their mental health.

Funds from the credit card annual fee will ramp up our program for Veterans and families in need

ME Bank has also secured a partnership with the National Breast Cancer Foundation. 

To date, customers of ME Bank’s pink everyday transaction account have donated over $1 million with industry research revealing consumer appeal for such initiatives.  

Branded as ME Bank’s Pink ‘Buck’ card, whenever a customer pays with the pink debit card, ME Bank will quadruple a customer’s one cent donation to The National Breast Cancer Foundation. 

Already, one million has been raised. The card was launched in 2011.  

RFi Group data shows that there is a growing trend towards consumers agreeing that their main bank is a brand that aligns with their values and beliefs, and this is particularly prevalent for younger consumers, with those aged 18-24 the most likely to feel that their main bank is aligned with their values and beliefs.

RFi Group data shows that just under 2 in 5 (39 per cent) consumers see appeal in a transaction account or debit card being partnered with a charity where for each purchase, a small amount of money is donated.  

This trend suggests that having a bank that aligns with personal values is becoming increasingly important, and initiatives such as charity partnerships and donations linked to consumer purchases could help drive positive sentiment towards banks.

“This idea resonates more strongly with younger consumers, particularly those aged 25” RFi Group manager of client insights Anna Shaw said. 

However, Shaw said that while charity partnerships are seen to be appealing, other inclusions and features such as no monthly account fee, no ATM fees or cashback offers exhibit higher levels of appeal, suggesting that product features are more likely to drive acquisition. 

“In saying this, given the appeal of charity partnerships, this is likely something that customers value that could help drive customer retention” Shaw added.