Bill My Parents and MasterCard are unveiling a new marketing program designed to help parents establish good spending habits while also monitoring their teen’s spending. The campaign, which has a rather long catchphrase, says it all: “Keeping track of your teen’s spending with the BillMyParnets SpendSmart MasterCard… Priceless.” But will that catchphrase catch on?
Anytime parents can keep a closer eye on what their teens are up to, where they’re spending money and how they’re spending it is usually a good thing. This, coupled with the ease in which parents can get money to their offspring with minutes sweetens the deal even more. The BillMyParents/MasterCard program makes it easy. Parents have many options, depending on how closely they wish to monitor those spending habits. They can set up alerts, such as anytime the card is used or when it hits a certain amount, that will notify parents via email or text messaging.
Further, they can instantly freeze or unfreeze the account, which is likely to cause the typical teen a lot of frustration if Mom and Dad use it as a way to control their teens’ whereabouts. Plus, a new iPhone was just unveiled, too -it’s a easy to manage program and is sure to be incorporated by those with an iPhone. This makes it even easier for both teens and parents. Finally, parents can set up “pay days” or allowance transfers for their teens. Money can be transferred instantly from Dad’s own accounts to the BillMyParents card once, twice or four times a month, much the way an employer would handle direct deposits.
For the younger generation, the technology built into the campaign makes it a great choice. That said, teens need to be aware that Mom and Dad can prevent the card being used to buy alcohol or cigarettes and they can also prevent the card from being used in say, casinos… or strip clubs. Once the teen knows where he can and can’t use his prepaid card, he will then be able to use it anywhere debit MasterCard is accepted. It can be used to fill the car with fuel before the weekend, to buy books on college campuses, enjoy a nice meal to celebrate the end of finals or splurge on that new handbag. Ideally, they’ll be able to sit down with their parents are regular intervals to see how their spending habits might influence them as an adult. They’ll be able to track their balances and knowing Mom can reload their cards in minutes is a reassuring bonus, too.
The goal is to first instill strong and responsible spending habits, and then to provide teens a way to experience a bit of freedom. Those teens that have part time jobs will be able to have their employers direct deposit their paychecks for an even greater sense of independence.
Finally, teens are given many options for the overall look of their card. It’s a great way to personalize their own credit card.
For Parents & Teens
As mentioned, this prepaid credit card allows golden opportunities for parents and their children to discuss the importance of good financial spending habits. The interactive website provides tips for both as they move forward. Teens are far better prepared for the adult world because of the efforts their parents made to instill those smart spending habits. With a page on the site dedicated to guidance, the lessons learned are perhaps the most “priceless” of the campaign. There are also calculators, too so that your teens can easily see the progress and how it’s made or lost. Grandma not sure what to get your teen for his birthday? The problem’s solved if she’d like to give cash.
So is the BillMyParents/MasterCard campaign right for your family? There don’t appear to be any downfalls to this program at all; in fact, the benefits are quite impressive. You’ll enjoy the same protections as every other MasterCard product, including zero fraud liability. The versatility of the program makes it a great choice and it’s a great way for parents and teens to negotiate responsibility as well as determining how tight the purse strings are based on how well a teen handles it. You can easily apply on line and setting up your account on the website is a breeze too. Be sure to review all the details associated with the offer and better still – have your teens review the details and the terms and conditions – it’s a great first step for both of you.
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