Mobile banking technology company Monitise is attempting to make account alerts two-way conversations, with an eye on marketing and security capabilities for payments applications.

Called Alerting+, the product can combine messaging about pending or due payments—or new payment options—with marketing, special offers or actionable information about security risks.

"Alerts are very much the next part of mobile commerce," says Marc Winitz, senior vice president of marketing at Monitise. "This is how you can deliver slick real-time offers based on information from the bank's CRM system."

Banks deliver the alerts through SMS text messages, email and push notifications. Financial institutions can use the two-way alerts to warn consumers about unusual transaction activity or potential fraud with the option to take immediate action on their account by responding to a series of choices presented in the alert.

"In the example of the Target breach, interactive alerts could have been used to communicate information about the breach to consumers, and give the consumers the ability to go directly to their financial institution to take action through the alert process," Winitz says.

The marketing options are available via an integration with a financial institution's business processes and customer data systems.

"The bank can look at transaction activity for an account holder and map that back to an offer in the context of that transaction, and ask them in the alert if the want to accept the offer," Winitz says.

Monitise, which has recently expanded its reach in the Middle East and Asia, released its new account alerts March 11. Webster Bank is among the early adopters, Monitise says in a press release.

Other targeted offer systems ask consumers to redeem offers by selecting the offer online or within an app, or by swiping a specific card at the point of sale. Many payments companies also use Bluetooth beacons to detect a customer's presence in a store to pitch an offer based on the nature of that visit.

In such an environment, alerts add another option for banks and consumers, Winitz says. "It's all with the idea of reconnecting with the consumer and allowing the bank to seek other ways to communicate," he says.

Banks thus far have missed the opportunity presented by alerting, says Zil Bareisis, a senior analyst at Celent. "While many banks allow customers to set up basic alerts, this new generation of enterprise alerting platforms allow a completely different model of customer engagement," he says. "The customers can manage alerts across channels, have more flexibility in setting them up and, most importantly, be able to act on them."

Subscribe Now

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the payments industry

14-Day Free Trial

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the industry