Monthly Archives: January 2011

My Loveletter to Bank Simple

Not long ago I read about an engineer from twitter that left to start a bank. So i visited Bank Simple’s website and signed up to be a beta-user. I immediately received an automated response from their Creative Director to field suggestions and understand more about me (their prospective user). Here’s what I wrote:

Hi Bill,

I’m an interactive designer and spend a lot of time consulting brand and service design. I’ve worked for large financial institutions and am continually astonished at two main things:

1) how siloed their business units are which leads to dysfunction and lack of synergy across their entire service offering (to be fair, sometimes they need to be due to govt. regulation).

2) how diametrically opposed to their “friendly” branding the people who actually run things are. If banks were run like Netflix, Zappos or twitter the world would be a better place.

This is where you all (hopefully) come in :)

I’m totally psyched to see how you’ll (hopefully) use digital tools, LBS and a no-bullshit approach to make “banking” [and by banking I mean access to cash, checking services, PFM, small-time investments, lines of credit, etc.] an integrated, painless, cheap(er) and seamless part of my life.

I’d also like to see how peer-to-peer money-lending services can be brought to bear to make the lender frequent and small investments and offer the borrower a choice-filled marketplace to decide what rates/payment structures work best for them. I think connecting people and their personal stories to each other will help humanize the borrowing experience and provide behavioral feedback for people to make better spending decisions.

I’m probably coming across really passionate about banking, but the truth is I’m not. I just see this as an industry so ready to take a giant leap forward that I want it to happen already! I also live in the NYC-area and find high-flying i-bankers obnoxious.

Good luck with this venture and I hope I can be a part of it.


It’s about time for this, isn’t it?