Happenings, Insights, Thought Leadership
FCC Services’ Passkey Program, formerly known as the National Discount Program, delivers exclusive savings and offers from nationally-known brands. These brands, referred to as “Partners” in the Passkey Program, offer a wide variety of personal and business services. Recruiting and onboarding Partners is a strategic process. It’s critical to align Passkey’s offerings with what’s most in demand from our Members. We train and educate the Partners about the unique aspects of the Program’s membership base.
One key way that potential new Partners are identified is through the Passkey Advisory Council, formed last year by Passkey Program Manager Heather Tseng. The 10-member Advisory Council includes representatives from different organizations across our business members and from different departments within those organizations. It effectively operates as a focus group, with the members volunteering their time and opinions regarding potential additions to Passkey.
In addition to their own suggestions, ideas vetted by the Advisory Council also come from FCC Services’ research and insight into shared business needs, from referrals received from Farm Credit and cooperative organizations, from survey data, and in some cases from vendor outreach. As an example, AgFirst research identified that people enjoy spending time with friends and family, traveling and enjoying entertainment together, so Passkey added Ticket Monster Perks to its lineup. Through its young professionals group, CoBank identified student debt as a broad challenge, and after further joint investigation, Passkey added SoFi to the program.
“To deliver more value to our Members, we’ve gotten more proactive in identifying individual and business needs that Passkey can help solve,” says Heather. “In our decisions, we consider a potential Partner's reputation and scope, and especially for enterprise solutions, lean heavily on recommendations from Farm Credit organizations.”
Once the contracting process is complete, new Partners are formally onboarded: educated about Farm Credit’s structure and the cooperative nature of its member organizations. “We’ve recognized that when our Partners understand the uniqueness of Farm Credit and cooperatives, they can meet their needs more effectively,” says Stephanie Barton, FCC Services’ Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Account Management. “Our onboarding process has been very successful in positioning new Partners to deliver value to our Members.”
A comprehensive launch plan is also enacted to introduce new Partners to the Passkey audience. Covering several months, the launch plan ensures that Partners get repeated exposure to the appropriate audience through targeted emails: more broadly for personal products and services, to smaller groups based on professional role for enterprise solutions. Quarterly business reviews with Partners ensures continued alignment, and ongoing reporting reveals how well the Partner is engaging with Members.
“The premise of Passkey is to deliver value to Members and also to Partners,” says Heather. “Keeping track of how a Partner is growing through Passkey helps us hone our communications so we can ensure that this value is optimized.”
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