Friday, May 12, 2006


So I was working on my proposal for a future Pay By Touch Stored-Value Check Cashing/Bill Paying Card and it dawned on me that we would need a good name for it. So I started thinking about what a good name might be. It would obviously be ideal for the "name" to have both branding power and market segment appeal.

I concluded that since this particular card would be specifically targeting "unbanked" and "underbanked Hispanics, so it was crucial to use a name that they understood and recognized as positive. At the same time it needed to have appeal and apply to the product itself. According to a report by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, many hispanics have negative perceptions about financial insitutions, and everyone agrees that
building trust is a critical first step. Therefore I was faced with the additional challenge of coming up with a name that instilled trust as well (tambien)

o I played around with the English to Spanish Dictionary and entered "credit" because helping them build credit is the fundamental underlying impetus behind my proposed program. These were the results:

English - "credit"
Spanish - credito, bonificar, haber, bancos

My attention immediately focused on bonificar. So I did a reverse search and here are some of the Spanish to English Translation results...

Spanish to English

Bonficar - take into account, credit
Bonificar - refund,
discount reimburse
Bonificar - to give a bonus to
Bonificar - ameliorate, receive a premium, to improve,
Bonificar - act of goodness, reclamation, to make better, bonafide

Sounded like a translations with a lot of positive words, words that instill loyalty, trust, and desire to participate.

Because my proposal:

* results in a "discount" on their check cashing fees
* "gives them a bonus" (as they vest 3 months at a time for credit rewards)
* "reimburses"
them for their loyalty with credit rewards
* allows them to "re-fund" their stored value card with every payroll check
* Provides opportunity to "receive a premium" of credit rewards
* Affords us "bonfide" head start on helping secure the unbanked sector

The naming of the card seemed now seemed obvious (almost too easy) as everything seemingly fell into place. All I needed to do was just add a "d" at the end of bonificar and we've got:

I took the liberty to reserve "" for Pay By Touch to use should they decide to embark on a quest to help improve the process of building trust and reaching out to both the unbanked and underbanked hispanic marketplace. Click the picture entitled "The Industry" and it will enlarge and you can read that although banks are doing their best, success has remains elusive.

One of the problems with prepaid cards is the regulatory environment, especially state to state. However, the regulatory environment is largely supportive of bank efforts to attract immigrant customers.

The pictures come from a 107 page report that came out Wednesday from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago entitled:

Financial Access for Immigrants - Lessons from Diverse Perspectives.

I'm in the midst of poring it over but based on what I've put together thus far, the merits of my proposal seem to be strengthening, which of course is better than the alternative.

The Discover/Pay By Touch "BonifiCard" is a reloadable check cashing card that doubles as an ATM and Debit card while building credit rewards. It requires them to make at least one bill payment per month with it.

To read the entire prepaid proposal click the link: Discover the Prepaid Touch

P.S: I also reserved to use as a marketing platform for the non-hispanic unbanked or those who don't currently qualify for a credit card... (are they called non-credibles?)