The Customer Effect

Tearsheet’s top 5 stories of 1H 2018

  • 2018 has been an interesting year for technology and finance.
  • Here are our top stories so far.
Tearsheet’s top 5 stories of 1H 2018

I founded Tearsheet over 10 years ago with a simple mission: to become the most honest source of information for professionals juiced about the future of the financial and fintech industries.

Fast forward over a decade and we’re still keeping to our original mission. The names of the people and technologies may have changed but the financial industry is finding its footing when it comes to innovation.

We took a look back at the stories that shaped our coverage this half year, resonated with our readers, and impacted the work of financial and fintech professionals around the world.

Here are the five most popular top stories so far in 2018

5. How Capital One is rethinking its approach to products

For the past year, Capital One has been rethinking how it can get out of the too-common approach of “innovating” by layering new technology on top of an old product — it’s realized it needs to entirely reconsider the customer’s interaction with it. Here’s how Capital One avoids creating just another bolt-on innovation strategy.

4. Allstate is watching you: How the insurer uses social media to check claims

Insurers are trawling customers’ Facebook and Instagram profiles to detect fraud. Insurers employ these strategies but in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica brouhaha, they don’t talk a lot about them. But Allstate’s model seems to be working as we unpacked the tools and tactics the company uses to reduce fraud by tracking its policyholders’ social media behavior.

3. Chase is rolling out advice-driven ‘Express’ branches

Millennials prefer to have conversations about long term financial goals, so Chase is transforming previously transactional branches into dedicated spaces for advice. Earlier this year, the largest U.S. bank rolled out six “Everyday Express” branches with a Digital Advice Bar to help customers learn how to engage with Chase digital products and video conferencing to connect customers with companion branch bankers for more complex matters.

2. Affirm’s big business for 2018 is marketing

Affirm may identify as a lending startup and encroaching on the payments space, but its core business is all marketing. “We’re not worried about Amazon,” Ryan Metcalf, Affirm’s director of international markets, said. “We certainly watch what they do, but we look at ourselves as providing services for all the retailers that aren’t necessarily Amazon. In 2018, you’ll see us with big-box retailers fighting that out.” Yeah.

1. Goldman Sachs has hired a crypto trader

We broke this story amid the expectation that Goldman was staffing up a crypto desk (which the firm routinely denied). In the wake of the news that GS had hired Justin Schmidt to head digital asset markets, the firm admitted it was interested in giving its clients access to crypto trading.

I’m proud of the coverage our team produced so far this year. We’ll continue to find those stories that generate insight on the issues shaping the financial industry, shedding light onto unexplored corners of technology and finance.

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