Westpac wants to reward you

19 November 2015
Westpac wants to reward you
‘Adapt or die’ is the zeitgeist for today. Where once, large corporates would use money and lobbying power to muscle out smaller players, digital disruption has levelled the playing field.

Companies that adopt what we call the Uber Model are clearly unencumbered by corporate process and are bold thinkers. But the financial sector is full of companies that are standing still while others race ahead. So I was particularly interested, when I recently used a Westpac ATM, to find that the bank has launched a pilot programme called Rewarded.

Rewarded, offers customers who use Westpac ATMs, vouchers/offers from participating retailers in the area. What’s interesting about this idea is that Westpac has come up with a solution to make the ATM more than just a cash machine, turning them into a channel for retailers to communicate with customers and for customers to be rewarded.

I spoke with head of Digital Ventures at Westpac, Lewis Billinghurst, who said they wanted to find another use for the ATM, one that would do more and deliver value for both customers and businesses. Much like a goods train, Westpac ATMs become the vehicle for retailers to communicate with their customers in a way that’s never been done in New Zealand before.

Here’s how it works:

Insert your card (yes a fee will apply if you’re not a Westpac customer)
Check your balance, deposit cash, withdraw cash and so on
Screen prompt asks if you would like to receive one of four offers (you can chose all four if you like – greedy sods)
Select one of the offers and a voucher is printed

Would I use a Westpac Rewarded ATM again? Yes, but only if the value of the voucher outweighed the cost of the transaction (I’m not a Westpac customer) and the discount or offer was relevant and enticing.

This last point is important because we’ve become fairly impervious to discounts and offers because we receive them on an almost daily basis. Why are they so prolific? Because brands often use a lazy ‘blanket’ approach to thanking customers for their business. ‘Thanks for being loyal, collect 30 more stamps and you’ll receive this amazing spoon.’

But back to me and what I value. To ensure Rewarded becomes a successful long-term business proposition, Westpac must analyse the data from the ATMs (50 million transactions p/a), then share the insights with the retailers so they can give me what I want – personalisation and relevance.

If you’re keen to be Rewarded, there’s a Westpac ATM in Takutai Square, Auckland Central.