If you’re not familiar, some of the credit card companies send out targeted credit card offers in the mail. Often these personalized bonuses are higher than the public miles/points sign up bonuses for the exact same cards.
When I started getting these years ago, I started wondering what were the elements that triggered me to be given this offer in the mail. What personal information did they use of mine to select me, and how did they get it? More what I’m interested in is how could I make sure I can get this again for different products, or how could others get the same offer?
This post is about four triggers that cause people to get targeted offers. Here are the stories of how I got these offers, what the offers were, and how you can get them too.
United 55k -> Have miles in a United account
Once upon a time I opened a United account in a fake name just to test something out.
There are a number of ways to earn small amounts of United miles whether it’s transfer miles from Chase, or take a survey. I was trying to credit miles to this random account in an experiment that worked. Now, this is a long time ago and the experiment is no longer relevant.
However, for the next years United has mailed offers for the 50,000 mile (+5,000 with authorized user) credit card to this random name that has just a tiny bit of United miles (instead of 30,000).
Last year I suggested in a newsletter taking a survey or transferring Chase points to your United account just so the balance is above zero, and many people reported getting targeted offers for the 55,000 mile offer in the mail in less than 3 weeks!
If your account has miles and doesn’t have the card, you will get the offer. I guarantee it.
IHG 80k -> Have Account/Points & Make A Booking
Nearly the same exact story as the United card…
An account with IHG points but no credit card tends to regularly get emails for the 80,000 point credit card (instead of the 60,000 point offer).
The thing unclear to me is whether or not you need points in your account. The account I have doesn’t have the credit card, but does have points in it. Maybe it’s worth transferring points in to get 20,000 more points, but maybe it’s not necessary.
I previously mentioned making a booking as a way to get these targeted offers, however I went to find an example and upon logging in, I saw it on IHG.com’s homepage, on the sliding banner. But it wasn’t seen on the home page of my account, which has the credit card.
Big Amex Offers -> Have A Business
Back when I first started this blog I had a bought the domain name for a different name as well, that I never used.
Before that domain expired a year later, I had gotten a ton of business credit card offers for that business name, which I never started.
At that time I figured they had some kind of partnership with GoDaddy, from whom I bought the domain. I assumed this because the website never was used at all.
Now I know that websites default to being publicly registered, and FrequentMiler recently suggested that publicly registered domains is how to receive targeted Amex Biz Offers. Exact same advise and experience, but more accurate conclusion.
Although the “how” doesn’t matter too much. Either way, a blank but registered website got mailings from Amex.
My advice is to hop on godaddy or another domain registrar and buy a cheap domain and make the organization your name. You could even make the website your name, if it’s available.
But make the organization your name and buy a cheap domain. Easy.
In fact, there are usually promotion codes for godaddy to make your first domain like a dollar or two.
Card Match Tool
Check out the CardMatch Tool here.
This is extremely hit/ miss. It won’t even show all their available cards for some people, but from time to time people find the big complimentary personal offers from the last method.
It does not put a hard pull on your credit score. It does use your personal info to figure out who you are and what cards you may be eligible for.
Again, this does not effect your credit score. But it seems to have ways of knowing roughly what score is yours and gives you the relevant offers. My guess is that the better your guessed credit score is, the better the offers you see will be.
Be a customer of companies that have co-branded credit cards. That seems to be the theme.
With IHG and United though, the other thing they have in common is that they both regularly change the bonus on their credit card. At least once a year, United bumps the publicly offered bonus up to 50,000 miles anyways.
So the companies that offer targeted bonuses to their customers often have bigger promotions on those cards anyways. These are offers that come and go but are hidden away and made known to the customers they target.