KeyBank Expands Customer Rewards Program

New KeyBank Relationship Rewards Program Offers Greater Benefits for Customers While Competitors Scale Back Their Offerings in New Regulatory Environment

Sep 21, 2011, 08:00 ET from KeyCorp

CLEVELAND, Sept. 20, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- At a time when many competitors are eliminating or de-emphasizing their customer rewards programs, KeyBank (NYSE: KEY) is launching a new and expanded program that will reward customers for taking advantage of Key's full range of services.

Beginning September 17, 2011, KeyBank Relationship Rewards will be Key's exclusive customer rewards program, replacing the existing KeyBank Rewards and Key Miles programs. The expanded program will reward customers for using a variety of services from debit card payments to automated bill paying.

"Above all else, Key is a relationship bank, and we want our customers to view Key as their primary bank," said Bill Koehler, president, Key Community Banking. "To fulfill that role, we offer the product variety and flexibility to meet a wide range of our customers' needs, and we will now reward our best customers for using those services. KeyBank Relationship Rewards focuses on the total relationship rather than just a single activity such as debit card spending. This differentiates Key from many of our competitors who are scaling back their rewards programs."

Banks Respond to New Fee Limits

To help offset the impact of new federal regulations that limit the fee income banks can receive from debit card transactions, 81 percent of banks polled by the American Bankers Association said they are planning to cut their debit card rewards programs in addition to raising fees and other actions. The regulations limiting debit fee income stem from the Durbin Amendment to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which was signed into law on July 21, 2010.

Key's approach, on the other hand, has been to create a more compelling value proposition and reward customer relationships by offering new products, greater flexibility and expanded benefits. The newly enhanced rewards program is the latest example of Key's effort to promote growth in its relationships as the primary bank for its customers. Last year, Key rolled out a variety of new checking account products to offer more options and flexibility within the changing regulatory landscape.

A Complete Rewards Program

Under the KeyBank Relationship Rewards program, customers will earn rewards for a broad range of activities including:

  • Using a debit card
  • Paying bills online
  • Making deposits at an ATM
  • Receiving statements electronically
  • Setting up direct deposit of a paycheck
  • Opening new savings or lending accounts (effective 12/9/2011)

After accumulating points through these activities, customers will be able to redeem their points for a wide variety of rewards ranging from retail gift cards, electronics and accessories, to airline, hotel, rental car, theme park and cruise discounts. For more, go to

For videos of customer examples, visit  

All Key Miles participants and certain KeyBank Rewards participants will automatically be upgraded to the new Relationship Rewards program; other KeyBank Rewards participants will need to visit a branch to enroll in the new program. Customers participating in the existing programs have been notified of the changes.

"The KeyBank Relationship Rewards program reflects our commitment to listen to customers and take their feedback into account in developing products and services that best match their changing banking needs," Koehler said. "Our enhanced rewards program will allow us to provide additional value and sharpen our focus on serving as our customers' primary bank."

About KeyCorp Cleveland-based KeyCorp (NYSE: KEY) is one of the nation's largest bank-based financial services companies, with assets of approximately $90 billion. Key companies provide investment management, retail and commercial banking, consumer finance, and investment banking products and services to individuals and companies throughout the United States and, for certain businesses, internationally. For more information, visit KeyBank is Member FDIC.