The Zimbabwean Perspective

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So can we just agree that BancABC is doing almost everything right at the moment?

If you’re a Nostro/VISA user at least..

BancABC  for the past year has been one of the best performing banks in the country, especially when it comes to customer service, but in the past few months it’s move to promote its VISA cards and get more customers have gone from slightly tempting to outright impressive. From it’s initial DialAVisa program, to this past month’s two promotions for clientele that would use said VISA cards, we’ve pretty much agreed on the following, BancABC is looking pretty good at the moment.

So just to backtrack again, almost a year ago BancABC’s DialAVisa program became a flagship program to get their new prepaid VISA cards in customers’ hands. It was a novel, enjoyable, and seemingly quite effective as the program is still around and picking up more customers by the day. It makes sense too, after all NOSTRO FCA customers are a big grab for every bank in the country, and considering how Zimbabweans are less willing to part with their USD especially in the case of banks, it definitely means banks have to be willing to sweeten the deal as much as possible for customers. And well, BancABC seems to have this idea nailed down. In fact, from the DialAVisa program from last year, this year they introduced their prepaid visa for USD $20 with a promotion that will give you literally an extra $20 or equivalent to spend. Simply put, free money. Now whether this card is worthwhile in the long run is another story entirely, but that’s not the point here, the point is again BancABC pinpointed the right way to “sweeten the pot” for consumers, and whether consumers get onto the program or not, they’ve probably heard about the promotion and have BancABC on their list of options for when they do need a prepaid VISA. Not only is the company offering tempting services, they’re getting themselves some pretty great free publicity as well. And to be fair, this marketing and these promotions aren’t for every Zimbabwean, not even the majority considering most people’s financial situations. Instead it seems the quite specific young adult with a relative amount of USD to spend and a need to pay for or buy things online or even when they travel (because even in these conditions they might be able to) and in need of a VISA/Mastercard and Nostro account with good enough rates and even a few extra incentives. That’s why the latest promotions seem even more tailored for this demographic: free music streaming, Netflix and even DSTV for at least an extra month and at most an extra few months. Simply put, pay for your Netflix, Apple Music, Spotify or DSTV with your BancABC VISA, and they’ll pay a month for DSTV and three months for the streaming services. That’s a tempting offer no matter which kind of entertainment you prefer, and even extends the appeal to older demographics as well. Simply put, they have the promotions game locked down, and considering the attention they’re getting, we’re willing to reckon they’ve gotten a few customers along the way too.

So what can we extract from all this? Or more importantly, what should other banks learn from this? Well, simple put: go after your customers and engage them where they are. And once you have them, give them more and more reason to jump into your services and give you money. It’s not that hard when you think about it, yet other banks are only sort of picking up on it. Well hopefully BancABC’s actions have the intended effect we want on this market, and that’s just basic competition, being the shot in the arm banks need in Zimbabwe to do better. Steward Bank already seems to be trying to follow suit on the delivering a card front, we’ll see if anyone else follows suit. For now, well done BancABC, keep at it.

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