The other day, while on a date with hubby, I was joking “A date with hubby, Priceless. For everything else, there is Mastercard”. It was a spontaneous sentence. That made me wonder at the power of Mastercard’s tagline! It is 20 years old but still as fresh in the mind.
So, this tempted me to work on marketing ideas for a campaign which is such an enduring success. Here goes…
Mastercard’s global chief marketing and communications officer, Raja Rajamannar, says… our brand positioning has moved from being transactional as “The best way to pay”, to more experiential “Connecting people to priceless possibilities”. With ‘marketing 4.0’ being our strategic framework, we evolved our brand’s role from observing ‘priceless’ moments to enabling priceless experiences. Based on research we identified nine key passion categories: shopping, sports, entertainment, culinary experiences, travel, philanthropy, music, arts & culture, and environment. To provide focus and maximise the return on our efforts, we created a simple and efficient architecture comprised of four platforms: ‘Priceless Cities’, ‘Priceless Surprises’, ‘Priceless Causes’ and ‘Priceless Specials’. Marketing WeekMasterCard is among the brands shifting traditional TV spend over to digital platforms, and has tripled its digital spend in the last two years.- Digiday
Mastercard’s recent marketing campaigns- an example
From May through October of last year, Mastercard also created its first restaurant installation in Milan called “Priceless Milano,” where each day 24 guests were able to have an exquisite dining experience designed by Michelin star chefs. The culinary experience was not free, but it was only available for Mastercard holders.“We didn’t start this restaurant to make money. Instead of spending millions of dollars on TV, this is how we create and curate an experience for our consumers,” said Rajamannar. “Once they have that experience, they will want Mastercard.”- Digiday
Based on this brand background,
if i were marketing @ Mastercard…
My marketing objective: I would align with the brand’s stated objective
“Our goal is to create an emotional bond with consumers and to deliver to them one-of-a-kind experiences they can only get with Mastercard.”- Forbes
My TG: Current Mastercard customers (because any experience offered to them will be magnified using digital and thus help, attract new customers).
Creative Marketing Ideas
Your biography by a bestselling author-
Select Mastercard holders will get the chance to have their biography written by a famous author! Mastercard can ask select customers to choose from a panel of best selling authors (each from a different genre). The experience of ‘being the star of the story’ will be priceless.
Just like the famous Swedish Ice Hotel, build an Ice Restaurant. But build it in a city which never gets snow or ice- like Las Vegas or Mumbai or Hong Kong etc. The restaurant will accept only Mastercard holders. The food should be special and the experience memorable. People would surely not mind paying for such a unique experience
The next iPhone or Samsung Galaxy that gets released (iPhone 8 or Samsung Galaxy 8 or any other highly anticipated model), if it can be made available first to Mastercard holders only and then open for sale to the rest of the world, that would be an extremely valuable offer.
Mount Everest Name Flag-
Some select customers can avail the offer of planting a flag with their name and country at the top of Mount Everest, the highest point on Earth. A lot of people scale the Mount Everest ever year. Mastercard can tie up with them for such an offer (assuming it is allowed).
Create an ecommerce site selling 100% authentic souvenirs from all across the world. Only Mastercard customers can purchase souvenirs from this site. This would be valuable for people since they get a chance to buy authentic country specialities right from their home. Evolved customers may want to decorate their houses with these souvenirs or gift them to others.
From a panel of world famous musicians/ music directors like AR Rahman, Usher, etc – you can choose one to create a signature tune for you. Customers login to a dedicated website, answer some questions about themselves and their personalities, pay a certain amount with their Mastercard and submit. Their chosen musician will create a special theme suited to them, ending with their name. It will be very unique and have a lot of brag value.
Uber/ Lyft surprise-
From those Uber/ Lyft customers who have saved their Mastercard details as payment method on Uber/ Lyft, choose some handful and give them a surprise. When they order a regular Uber/Lyft, send them a Limo or some super car like a Ferrari or a chopper at the same price. Yet again, a priceless experience.
Mastercard customers can submit their requests for any sort of product they can imagine. Mastercard will 3D print all those products that are doable from the submissions. Once the product is made, the card holder can purchase it using his Mastercard.
White Glove Service-
Tie up with the top restaurants in each city. Any Mastercard customer coming to that restaurant will be served by white-gloved staff appointed exclusively for Mastercard holders.
These were some unusual experiential marketing ideas for Mastercard. What is your take on these ideas? Would they succeed in creating Priceless memories for customers? Let me know in the comments…