Consumer Payment Card News

VISA's New College Website

Visa U.S.A. began its 1997 college marketing program with the debut last week of the RankIt web site – the new survey site for and about America’s college students. Students visiting the site can cast their votes on monthly questions pertaining to college life, sports, travel, television, books or film. Survey topics range from the serious, such as drug testing, to the less serious, like “Which city should have been disintegrated first in Independence Day?” The site can be found at: www.rankit.com

“RankIt is Visa’s first web site designed for the college market,” said Eric Kahn, vice president, Visa U.S.A. “It is our hope that the results generated on the site can provide Visa Members with valuable insight into the youth and college markets and make future Visa college outreach efforts more effective. Afterall, college students are the consumers of tomorrow.”

Visa member financial institutions will be able to have a presence on the site through RankIt’s Member links page – accessible to site visitors with the simple click of a mouse – thus enabling Members to target the youth and college markets in an entertaining, non-corporate setting.

The new site will also feature contest tie-ins, such as the UnVailed ’97 competition: an event sponsored by Sam Goody, Musicland and Visa U.S.A. that combines alternative music and snowboarding. At the end of this month, RankIt browsers can preview the music of four regional finalist banks from the contest and vote for their favorite banks on-line.

“Finally, there’s a web site that covers fun stuff that college students are interested in and gives them a forum to express their opinions,” continued Kahn. “It delivers the answers you always wanted to know but didn’t have the college audience to ask,” he said.

The site’s home page directs visitors to four areas of survey questions and result: Campus Culture, which surveys what college living is all about; Media Mix, which ranks the TV shows, books, films and personalities students love (or hate) most; Out Of Here, a focus on college student travel habits and tips; and Sports, a refuge for the casual sports enthusiast or participant.

Each section has multiple-choice “Q&A” topics to answer and a “Can We Talk?” section, which gives students a soapbox on hot issues ranging from affirmative action and athelete drug testing, to trivial forums such as must-read authors and road trips never to be taken again.

Though the site’s main function revolves around surveys, RankIt also contains:

Feature articles from publications like Spin and POV
A “Diversions” link that regularly offers up “quick, mindless activities” and giveaways. February’s giveaway is an electronic, customizable Valentine, complete with a choice of music to be played on delivery.
Visa is the world’s largest consumer payment system. It plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benegit its 20,000 member financial institutions, their cardholders, and the globaleconomy. Visa’s 510 millioncards are accepted at more than 13 million locations worldwide. The Visa Global ATM Network consists of more than 319,000 ATMs in 109 countries. For more infomration on Visa, visit Visa Expo at http://www.visa.com.

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