Phased Introduction To Asian Pacific Markets
For the aim of the realizing the most efficient work plan for the Asian Pacific countries, the follwing is recommended that Citibank needs to enter international credit card markets via a phased plan. That plan is likely to define the credit card to the areas which are quessed to get the minimum amount of risk integrated with their economic sutiations, govermantal status and cultural rights of credit usage. When these implement, the benefit of the implementations will allow all above factors to help the success of the future expansions and provide a powerful competitor into the markets. Citibank may also enter the gold marketplace firstly, by providing a less volume, but high amount of product which lower-middle class customers will strive for and eventually have, in the Standard Card product. (Buencamino D. and Gorbunov, 2002)
The powerful points of entering the Asian market are to make a wider perspective for Citibank's view of the global market, the occasions retrived by a powerful economic growth area, the future expectations to cross-sell its whole product line.
The risks of entering the Asian marketplace are the political corruption, fraud, cultural differences, and government regulations. The potential rewards of being a fast follower to the Asian market outweigh the risk of the political corruption. Cultural differences and government regulations are known risks and each country will have a different plan to optimize its business in these differing environments. The concern between the mismatch of the targeted banking business and the traditional mass market credit card business is mitigated by taking a phased approach, where the credit cards are initially launched in upscale markets and over time are expanded to lower markets.
Marketing the Gold Card to Upscale Markets 对高端市场销售黄金卡
The majority of Asian markets see credit card ownership as a symbol of prestige and status. To continue Citibank's upscale image, Phase I would include offering a Gold credit card in the following countries to the more affluent population, Malaysia, Thailand, India and Singapore. The services that will be offered to all of the Gold Card markets are listed in Table 1. As can be seen, Citibank keeps its image as an upscale credit card company with superior services. (Buencamino D. and Gorbunov, 2002)#p#分页标题#e#
The pricing profiles for each country can be seen in Table 1. Customers will be enticed to own these credit cards because joining fees for all countries will be $0. This money will be recouped by offering higher annual fees. Annual fees are justified to the customers by the superior service that is offered.
Malaysia is the first country in which Citibank will expand its credit card operations because its economy is quickly growing, Malaysians are ok with revolving credit, and the market is not saturated. In addition, the political risk is lower in Malaysia than some of the other high growth countries, therefore, it is an ideal place to start the credit card expansion in Asia.
Thailand is the next country which Citibank should enter. It is one of Asia's rapidly developing countries, so there is a likelihood of high profits. In addition there is low credit card penetration and little competition in Thailand. Citibank can compete against the local banks because it has an upscale Visa and Mastercard, and prestige is important to their positioning. The political corruption in Thailand poses some risk, and is cause for concern.(Buencamino D. and Gorbunov, 2002)
India is a very high potential country for returns because there is low competition from American Express, Diners Club and local banks for the upscale market. It will need time to build more infrastructure, so large urban areas will be targeted. Because India has a culture where revolving credit is perceived as negative, annual fees will be higher than other countries. The risk to India is the political corruption and unstable federal government.
Singapore will be entered last because its credit card market is saturated and poses the least return. In addition, it will be the most difficult country to offer a differentiated product. Large international banks offering Visas and Mastercards were already established in Singapore had lower prestige than American Express but higher than the local banks.
Marketing the Standard Card to Regular Markets 对正规市场销售标准卡
Phase II includes moving down markets to reach the lower income market. A standard credit card will be rolled out to Australia, Taiwan, Indonesia, Philippines and Hong Kong. The services that will be offered to all of the Standard card markets are listed in Table 2. As can be seen, Citibank keeps its image as an upscale credit card company with superior services attracting customers who were not able to have this service before, and begins to move downstream to the regular markets with a different pricing model.
The pricing profiles for each country can be seen in Table 2. Customers will be enticed to own these credit cards because joining fees for all countries will be waived. In addition, the first annual payment will be paid by Citibank as a free gift for joining. This money will be recouped by offering higher annual fees than competing credit cards. The annual fee will have to be repaid by the customer if they cancel the credit card within the first year, adding to the retention rate. Annual fees are justified to the customers by the superior service that is offered, and the regular customers will feel like they are entering the upper class by having this superior service.(Jost and Sandhu, 2000)#p#分页标题#e#
Australia will be the first country entered with the standard credit card. Credit cards are already popular, but there is still some market share to be had in the lower income families. It is also a stable country and a low risk option for learning how to enter the lower income credit card market. Taiwan also is politically stable, so it will be the second country entered with the standard credit card. Due to the banking regulations in Taiwan, the banking industry was still in early stages of development, so it is a good country to enter early. As with India, revolving credit was not acceptable to the Taiwanese culture, therefore, a higher annual fee would be charged.(Jost and Sandhu, 2000)
Indonesia has a high possibility for growth in their middle class because of low credit card penetration. Therefore, it will be the next country to enter with the credit card business. Although it has higher prospects of return than Australia, it is risky due to the political corruption within the country. Therefore, it will be entered after Australia and Taiwan. Introducing the standard card in the Philippines is very risky due to political corruption and potential threats of Communist insurgency. It has high economic growth and low credit card penetration, so the profit is potentially quite high and Citibank could be richly rewarded for taking on the political risk. Hong Kong will be the last country to be entered with the standard card. Because Citibank already has a presence in Hong Kong they could slowly grow this business without targeting specific strategies. Once the other markets are up and running, they could switch focus to Hong Kong. (Jost and Sandhu, 2000)
Citibank's Branding Strategy:花旗银行品牌战略：
Citibank offers excellent customer service, and fosters growth and innovation among the credit card products and services provided.
Marketing/Customer Acquisition Strategy:
The credit card launch in Hong Kong has given insight into many different marketing strategies. To expand its customer base, Citibank should analyze the customer and country demographics, and customize a multifaceted marketing strategy for each country within the Asia Pacific. The first marketing strategy to implement in all countries is the use of direct mail. Although direct mail is considered to be an expensive alternative, it offers the ability to target particular customer segments and reach a wide range of prospects.
The second marketing strategy recommended for use in all countries is take-ones which are applications distributed at in-store countertop displays. It is recommended to collect market intelligence to determine what stores the customers in the high end countries and low end low end countries shop at and distribute the take-ones accordingly.
The third marketing strategy should be to hire sales representatives to call potential customers. Like take-ones, it is an expensive option, but it is proven to be very successful. Citibank should use this strategy in all countries except Indonesia and the Philippines; in Indonesia, less than 1% of the population have telephones and in the Philippines, only 1% of the population have telephones . For these two countries there are better marketing strategies that offer a broader reach.#p#分页标题#e#
In addition to direct sales, Citibank should use bind-ins, which are inserts for newspapers and magazines in all countries except India, where the literacy rate is very low (see Table 4). It would be essential to research what publications the customers in the high end countries and low end countries prefer and target the bind-ins to these newspapers and magazines. (Siddiqui and Abrar, 2008)
Thematic television and commercials should be used in all countries with the exception of India, Indonesia, and the Philippines. In these three countries, there is a very low percentage of the population that owns a television (see Table 4). Similar to take-ones and bind-ins, it would be important to know what television stations and times are best suited to attract customers in the high end countries and the low end countries. (Siddiqui and Abrar, 2008)
Finally, Citibank should implement a marketing approach which was not used in Hong Kong, but will be highly effective; print advertising in the public transportation (e.g., billboards on highways, signage on buses or taxis, etc). The company would benefit from using this approach for all countries except in India because 80% of the country's population lives in rural areas.
To cross-sell the product line in Hong Kong, it is recommended that Citibank use three marketing approaches (see Table 5). The first approach would be to send direct mail to the current customers as there is a smaller chance they will discard the information. The second approach would be to feature take-ones in all of the current branch locations. The third approach would be to have sales representatives call current customers and talk to them about the other product and services offerings. (Siddiqui and Abrar, 2008)
Centralized vs. Local Data Processing 集中式与局部数据处理
Due to the complexity and high cost associated with coordinating, networking and building a centralized data processing center, Citibank should enter the market by using local centers. Furthermore, a phased approach will be used to expand throughout the Asian Pacific region and centralize the data center once best practices are well established and networking becomes easier to integrate with all of the satellite centers. (Siddiqui and Abrar, 2008)
Citibank's alternatives are to not enter the credit card business in Asia or to enter it in a different way than described above. The strengths of not entering the credit card business are keeping the focus on their banking business and not overstretching their current country bank managers, the reduced risk from not entering politically unstable countries, and not having to invest in new infrastructure.(Hill, Charles and Jones, 2007)
The weaknesses of not entering the Asian market though are the inconsistent message of its one marketplace global strategy, the loss of potentially large revenues, not having another channel to cross-sell its current products in the future, and simply being shortsighted.#p#分页标题#e#
Citibank could also take the strategy of entering all of the Asian countries at one time or entering all countries with the same product. The advantage of entering all countries at the same time is that the risk of any one market is reduced by entering multiple markets. However, the weakness is that one country cannot learn from the best practices of another and processes will not be refined for future countries. The strength of having the same product for all countries is the ease of management and possibility of easy centralization. However, the countries vary widely, so the weaknesses are that money could be left on the table for some markets and overpriced for others. Each culture must be taken into account.(Hill, Charles and Jones, 2007)
Citibank should invest in its future by investing in Asia and it should do so in a logical and culturally sensitive manner.
It is better to use a planned business strategy and detailed market options; and also concentrate on comsumer profile.
Entering to Australia, India, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Malaysia, India, and Indonesia markets; making more developments in Hong Kong market; Entering Korea when laws allow this.
Using different implementation, value creations and prepositions: in India, Indonesia, Taiwan, Thailand, Malaysia emphasize status; targeting upper and upper-middle class; using Citibank and Dinners database to qualify customers and minimize credit risk.
Many of the countries are emerging markets or markets with large population, steady economic growth, and great market potential in the near future. AMEX's early entrance in Hong Kong and Singapore allowed the company to maintain its leadership in the credit card business in these countries, something Citibank should do for the entire region. When Citicorp credit card is successfully launched, it brings a huge amount of input, by taking into account the volume of the market and in some situations such as there is not many competitors in the market. The other situation that I support is the process is a winner is the fact that Citibank has already found itself as a well-known, consumer-based international bank. The bank's 11 years in the market, to a great degree minimizes a major backdrop associated with emerging economies, the lack of reliable credit information in the consumer sector. In some countries, there are no established credit-reporting systems, while in others the information provided by the credit-reporting agencies is unreliable. Citibank by now should have generated a signifiacant customers' database, and it will easily identify credit-worthy customers to minimize the credit risk. At the moment, Citibank has offers substantial credit in the form of mortgages and car financing to some clients. Citibank customers has an average income several times higher than the one in the particular country. It has a Citigold club with clients with substantial purchase powe. Citicorp does not need to compee on price instead it should charge the highest prices in each market. The launch of the Citicorp credit card operation is less risky because the Asia Pacific is a well-established market for the company and the concept of credit offers is not new for the bank. Even more the company's Dinner Club cards and the Hong Kong credit card operation will provide more relevant point of reference to create a winning strategy. The plan allows Citicorp to increase its distribution to customers in locations that currently it is impossible as a result of government regulations. This is a legitimate way of overcoming restrictions and growing the existing business. Cross-selling is a major benefit which will be difficult to monitor.#p#分页标题#e#
Organizational Change: Because they don't want to take risks which may cause future losses of their business. Therefore, Citibank has to change the organization: first credit card team of Asia Pacific should be in place and it should be responsible for building strategies for entire markets. And this team should work closely with regional offices. So-called matrix organization should be implemented. Specifically, the team will use current customer base of each country and establish most suitable marketing mix for each country under the cooperation with regional offices.
Marketing: In order to keep brand equity of Citibank, Citibank cannot conduct mass-marketing but more pinpointed marketing for target customers. Therefore, Citibank should not use Bind-Ins method. Also, to achieve effective marketing, Citibank should not use Direct Mail in this case. Consequently, Take-Ones and Direct Sales should be used to acquire new customers. However, location of Take-Ones is very important to access upper and upper-middle class people and high quality of Direct Sales are also mandatory for its success, because Citibank targets not only customers outside its branch business but also cross-selling other Citibank products and services to these customers.
Strategic shift from developed countries to emerging countries: Citibank should start from strengthen its business in Hong Kong then launch credit card business in Australia and Singapore. Because Citibank can use stable infrastructure for the operation of credit card business in these countries and access large number of upper and upper-middle class people.
New team can attract more current upper class customers for the credit cards then expand new customers from upper-middle class by offering Gold Card and middle class by offering Classic Card without deterioration of brand equity through right marketing mix mentioned above. In addition, Citibank should introduce Platinum Card for super upper class people, which may add more brand image for Citibank and also prevent from the cannibalization of current Dinner Card holders.
Expansion for Emerging Markets: Considering the long-term growth prospects, Citibank should start credit card business in emerging markets like India. Poor infrastructure for the operation might be some troubles in the process of the operation, but future profit as the first mover in these countries will overcome these problems. In order to capture increasing number of upper-middle class people in emerging markets, similar strategy should be applied in these countries. They are hungry for a better quality of life and are ready to spend. Another important factor to be successful in these countries, Citibank should rethink the cost structure and redesign the products to fit their requirements.
Product Differentiation: In addition to offer Platinum Card for super rich people, Citibank has offer more advanced services and products. First, Citibank can consider to issue Cathey-Pacific Citibank Card in Hong Kong and Philippine, SingaporeAirline Citibank Card in Singapore, etc. in order to obtain business executives who currently use Amex for their business trips. Second, Citibank can offer the credit card with card holder's face picture for the identification. Third, Citibank can issue cooperate cards through strategic alliances with prestigious companies such as Hutchson in Hong Kong, Singapore Telecom in Singapore and Tata-group even in India. As a result, Citibank can obtain more business executives as their new customers.#p#分页标题#e#