The evolution of rewards programs took another turn this week when US Bank announced its new partnership with FreeMonee. FreeMonee is designed to provide card issuers with “intelligent” rewards, like Cardlytics model, but without the need for consumers to go to online statements for discounts and deals. In this model, consumers sign up for the program through their bank, like US Bank, and are automatically offered “gifts” in the form of discounts at the POS. The promise is that over time, the FreeMonee system will become smarter about that consumer and increase the relevancy of the offers accordingly.
This system may have the advantage of begin operationally more efficient as well if all the issuer needs to do is provide a scrubbed file out and a credit file in, rather than building integration layers onto its online banking platform. The disadvantage is that the consumer isn’t encouraged to come back to the issuer-branded portal to get their deals. But the convenience factor could be a big plus.
U.S. Bancorp said Thursday it is offering customers a service from third-party vendor FreeMonee Network. The program generates what amounts to a gift card to be used at a participating merchant. When a consumer receives an offer, they can redeem it by using their existing U.S. Bank debit card at the retailer.
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