I’d suggest you check with Starling to see whether they’ll ever notify you about an opportunity that you have to save money.
Both banks have such rich data that identifying this type of insight is straightforward in some cases. And I’m not sure how many users would thank their bank if it was at least 51% sure (100% sure in some cases) that the user could save money, by using a different product / provider & didn’t let them know…
So Starling would be crazy not to do this too.
Also, I personally don’t care whether users want to call this advertising or something else, it’s semantics, what matters is the outcome.
But I do know that advertising is a loaded term & you’re assuming that it means one thing whereas Monzo’s solution will clearly be different. So I’m not sure how helpful it is for the debate to call this advertising right now. You’ll be complaining about something different than what Monzo will do.
It doesn’t matter whether the blog post’s description sounds similar to advertising either. Until we experience the finished implementation, we won’t know how it’s different.
Starling’s blog post, which I quoted above, specifically says they won’t. Maybe they’ll change their minds at some point, which would also make me sad. Oh well, I’m sure NatWest will have me back.
True, I’m probably in the minority. I think if there were too many ‘money saving opportunities’ (there, I’ve stopped calling them ads ), people would get sick of them, but my threshold is 1, where as most peoples’ will be higher.
If they publish a blog post outlining their plans, I think it’s reasonable to make judgements based on that. The entire purpose of publishing it is to give people an idea of the direction they’re taking - I’m not sure what the point of it is if people aren’t supposed to use it to make decisions about the product/company. Some people will read it, love the product direction, and sign up for a Monzo account. Others will read it, dislike the product direction, and move on somewhere else. Both seem like reasonable reactions to me.
Maybe I have, but there’s no point in arguing about that. It’s beside the point. I’m not trying to promote Starling as the saviour of banks. Whatever Starling do (or anyone else for that matter), it doesn’t affect my opinion on Monzo’s direction.
Anyway, I’m going to bow out. I’m sad about this, as I do like Monzo, but it seems they’re set on it, so I’ll leave the feedback to people who will use the product and can help make it better.
The most important thing here for me, is the extent to which Monzo demand partner companies share their values. If there is any shady companies in there, it’s a big loss for me. However, Monzo is probably one of the few companies at the moment that I would trust to pull this off in a manner that really is best for the customer.
I would also love to see some element of the Monzo community being able to weigh in, rate, review, vote on what the best providers are. For example, if a lot of Monzo users find a certain insurance company are particular good, fair and open, they should be able to shout about it to other users.
I read the Starling quote saying they “won’t be pushy”. That could mean they won’t use notifications (if that’s the specific point you’re sad about) but it’s far from clear that’s that what it means. It all depends on whether a one-off notification is interpreted as “pushy”. YMMV.
Monzo have said from the start that this side of life will very much be “opt-in” (or maybe opt-out on first exposure) so, if we hold them to that, you should still get the experience you want.
I am not sure Monzo have specifically said that there will be an option to completely opt-out of all marketplace offers. Again it remains to be seen how Monzo are going to implement this only then we can make an informed judgement. I am going to wait and see but a bit like @podgib I have a lot of reservations.
one of the very first posts by head of marketing talking about the bulb offering -
“We sent the offer via a feed item as that was the easiest way to send to people rather than creating a separate section of the app … but the long-term plan will probably be to have a separate section of the app for offers like this (although we may still use the feed to surface them, depending on the feedback we get) - we’ll see how it evolves! If you find this spammy and don’t want to receive future offers, there’s an easy way in the flow today to opt out of future offers.”
lets just wait and see whats on offer before we all start saying I don’t want this I don’t want that - Im leaving Monzo because of what people that use Monzo are speculating on as a service won’t suit me , and it hasn’t even arrived yet , but Im off … patience then criticise
and one more - which is actually worth reading more when considering what Monzo are trying to do here , wait and see what the offer is , do you want to receive these offers ? , will these offers benefit me financially ? - nope, don’t like “spam”, not what I signed up for , I just want free FX Im off
“If we make changes to it that are clearly in your favour, we’ll tell you once they’ve been made. Otherwise we will give you two months’ notice.”
Also as currently set-up, the bit you cite exists within the T&C for the pre-paid account but does not appear in V2.0 of the current account T&C (which is very very brief)
Now I suspect that everything that applies to the pre-paid card should apply to the current account but as currently set up I’m not sure that’s clear and Monzo might want to reorganise that page before it causes them legal problems.
Hoping that you will use the power on this online community to see what products and brands we all use or would like to use.
If you could say to a company ‘we have a few hundred thousand people that would by your travel insurance/credit card/mortgage product if you did xyz’ - that’s powerful.
Make it easy to switch energy suppliers and save money-grubbing fantastic. Use Monzo to enter in meter readings and tell you when it’s cheaper to switch energy suppliers? Wow- that’s disruptive. All sorts of potential using the power of you customer base and platform as leverage.
I’m the Product Manager on the Partnerships team. I’ll try and address some of the concerns I’ve read in the comments - please shout if in any way I didn’t fully respond!
I think it’ll be key for us to keep the same level of transparency as we’ve always had. Moreover, given the marketplace will involve building partnerships with 3rd parties, we’ll make sure that whoever we partner with is fully aligned with our values - that’s going to be key to build successful partnerships!
It’s worth bearing in mind that tests are very different from the type of customer journeys we have in mind for all these products. The Bulb test was very much a “Switch to Bulb, save money and get £x to switch”. That does sound like an ad that Bulb would put in the tube. However, what we can do (and what Phil mentioned in the post) is that we can create new journeys from relevant places in the app. For example, “Switch energy provider” could be in the Transaction Details screen of your energy direct debit. In our view, this feels much more like a relevant place to help you “manage your finances” rather than the feed.
I totally see your points and I partially agree with it. However, you can argue that if we did that it would be like building a small moneysupermarket.com in the Monzo app. That feels like it could easily fall in the trap of being an “offers dump”. I don’t see these as “offers” but rather new products that you can access through Monzo. We want to help you manage your financial life like a ninja and any product we add to our offering, whether through partnerships or built internally, needs to feel like relevant. Again, we might be completely wrong and we’ll do as much user testing / community outreach as we can to validate our hypothesis. We’ll definitely start with small scale tests across the product lines and iterate on them based on your feedback.
You should 100% be able to opt-out from any unsolicited offerings from Monzo. Just like you can opt out from marketing emails, if you wish to.
This is an interesting point. I don’t think we’d hide it in that case. Just like you wouldn’t be able to opt-out of an “Apply for an overdraft” button even if you’re not interested in an overdraft. What you should be able to opt-out of is being the recipient of targeted offers or new products, as in this case they are unsolicited. Does that sound sensible?