Total System Services Inc. and Fair, Isaac & Co. are expanding a data base marketing alliance.
Since 1995, Total System has been selling a credit card marketing system, dbAdvantage, with Fair, Isaac's Dynamark Inc. subsidiary.
Under terms of their new agreement, Fair, Isaac will integrate its Triad software into the system, enabling card issuers served by Total System to measure the risks associated with aiming marketing programs at specific customers.
"Risk and marketing have sort of been separate, but we're seeing more and more issuers focusing on profitability," said Jim Lazos, manager of data base marketing consulting at St. Paul-based Dynamark.
Andy Marks, group vice president at Columbus, Ga.-based Total System, said, "We're just trying to give our clients more data so they can make more intelligent decisions. The better you know your client, the more likely you are to keep him as your client."
The new system is scheduled to be tested with an issuing bank in September. Company executives expect the software to be generally available by January.
The dbAdvantage system is based on a cardholder data base maintained by Dynamark and augmented by information from Total System's processing business.
Card issuers could use the data base to direct marketing strategies. Total System carries out the marketing plans on behalf of many of its issuers.
Incorporating Triad into the system lets issuers get more sophisticated about how and to whom they sell their products.
"We wanted to integrate the Triad product with the marketing product so that we could not only take care of marketing actions, but also have a much greater control over risk decisions," Mr. Marks said.
"Some of our small to medium-size issuers wouldn't have the skill or the finances to do this themselves."
Mr. Lazos added that the new system will "level the competitive playing field with monoline card issuers" that are noted for the sophistication of their data bases and analytic systems.