NACHA Launches Y2K Mailing to Prevent Direct Deposit Drop Out

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The National Automated Clearinghouse Association, Herndon, VA, will drop a direct mail consumer education campaign this week targeting the financial institutions and corporations it represents. The program addresses the reliability and Y2K readiness of direct deposit payment systems.

More than 75,000 pieces will go out to large financial institutions and corporations throughout the country, with 60 percent of the mailings going to corporations such as Visa and MasterCard. Financial institutions and corporations represented by the American Payroll Associations and the American Bankers Association also will receive the mailing.

"The goal of the campaign is try to get people to keep their money in the direct deposit system," said Ned Shannon, vice president of Marketing General, Alexandria, VA, the direct response agency managing the campaign for NACHA. "We want consumers to have a comfort level and let them know that their money will be in their bank account Jan. 2. What a lot of these banks are looking to do is avoid the headache of having to take these people out of the system and then put them back in a few weeks later."

According to Shannon, many of the institutions have yet to notice that consumers are taking their money out of direct deposit systems. Yet research done by NACHA has revealed that a large percentage of consumers are planning on removing themselves from direct deposit right after Thanksgiving and then putting themselves back into it after the new year begins.

Two separate pieces will be mailed to banks and corporations, and additional promotional materials will be sent to both so that they can then distribute them to their customers. The products, including brochures, pamphlets, statement stuffers, space ads, self-mailers and table cards will contain answers to the most frequently asked questions about the Y2K readiness of direct deposit systems.

"We are looking to start the campaign as early as possible so that the materials can be dispersed to consumers and corporations before the start of Fall," Shannon said.

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