AT&T’s Home Page Spawns Account Online Service

AT&T's Universal Card Services (Jacksonville, Fla.), its calling card-credit card division, used extranet technology to launch "AT&T Universal Account Online." Anticipating that it had a customer base that would prefer to conduct business online, AT&T rapidly developed this site as an extension to its AT&T Web site (http://www.att.com) which promoted its card services on the Internet.

Targeting a small minority of its calling card/credit card accounts (less than 2 percent), AT&T marketers primarily used the home page to advertise the site, about a year ago. The effort was supplemented with a small direct mail campaign.

The home page was also used as a research engine. Marketers were able to capture consumer interest through e-mails that expressed their preference for conducting business online.

Culling the expertise AT&T had in-house, AT&T Universal Account Online was created with input from IT, corporate communications, marketing, customer service and management.

Unlike the launch of the home page, the primary objective for all of these departments was to build a site that could effectively execute customer account transactions. "When our home page was launched, we didn't know where it would go, but with the account online service we had to make sure it was done right," said Mitch Montagna, spokesperson for AT&T Universal Card Services.

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