Chase offers new 'Ink' cards to connect with small businesses

WILMINGTON, DE: Chase Card Services has introduced a suite of cards, "Ink from Chase," and a marketing campaign targeting small businesses.

WILMINGTON, DE: Chase Card Services has introduced a suite of cards, "Ink from Chase," and a marketing campaign targeting small businesses.

The four new cards were unveiled on September 23 at the Inc 500/5000 Conference and Awards Ceremony, a gathering of entrepreneurs that have appeared in the magazine's rankings, which highlight America's fastest growing, private companies.

Laura Rossi, VP of external affairs for Chase Card Services, noted that although the bank has offered small business-specific products for decades, it hoped this brand would further cement those relationships.

“Ink was developed specifically to highlight Chase's commitment to the small business market with a brand uniquely their own,” she said.

In order to raise awareness for the new brand, Chase secured embargoed launch-day stories in The Wall Street Journal and Reuters. Other Ink-related stories also appeared on the AP, Reuters, and other media outlets in the days following. The media relations efforts, which is being handled by Chase PR partner Ketchum, also includes an RMT, an ANR, and broadcast outreach, that Rossi said will include a story on ABC News Now.

In addition, a microsite, www.inkfromchase.com, accompanied the launch, and Ink has a presence on LinkedIn and Facebook. Advertising, appearing in print, online, and on broadcast media began on October 1.

The suite of cards includes Ink Bold as Chase's first pay-in-full charge card and the first for Visa and Mastercard. The Ink, Ink Plus, and Ink Cash cards function as more traditional credit cards.

While a sponsor of the Inc magazine event, Rossi said the company used its interactive booth to gather anecdotes from the small business owners in attendance, which it plans to add to the microsite. Chase also conducted a pre-conference online survey of companies appearing on the Inc 500/5000 ranking that was used in the media outreach effort.

Media attention has focused on credit cards in recent months as issues concerning fees and consumer protection were taken up by legislators.

PRWeek also reported recently on Chase's efforts to help consumers manage their credit card debt via the new Blueprint features (which are available on the more traditional Ink cards); Chase has also launched other programs this year: Ultimate Rewards and Sapphire. And the Amex/NBC Universal initiative, “Shine A Light,” which launched recently, also focuses on small businesses.

“Credit cards are part of every consumer's financial plan at this point,” said Rossi. “Chase is doing its best to offer the best product to the right person, be that a small business owner or consumers.”

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