Hello and welcome to Finance Forum – a blog that is intended to build a bridge between users and providers of financial products. Banks are too often seen as castles. Money goes in and comes out, and no-one is too sure what happens in between. Bankers look out at a world which, they believe, persistently refuses to understand the logic of credit. They are criticised for obeying the basic axioms of their business and become as being vilified as politicians.
We are going to pull down that wall. As much as you love to hate it, your bank is an essential part of your life. As many stick and stones are landed on it by its customers, the bank wouldn’t exist without them. Banking relations have passed through an uncomfortable phase following the replacement of the bank manager with the call centre and the standard letter – worsening banking’s image as aloof and disengaged.
We believe that phase will come to an end with the Internet. People talk to each other every day on the Internet about their experiences with their banks. Banks can and will listen – and talk back. That’s why you will see a particular thread in the blog about how banks are – and, all too often, aren’t – using the Internet to communicate with their customers.
But that’s not all. Our ears will be permanently pricked for interesting ideas and information that might stimulate your private thoughts and plans, as well as your comments. Journalists, bankers and businessmen – as well as happy and unhappy customers – please hit the comment button to slap us on the backs or slap us down. We don’t claim to be right all the time. But we’re never going to know unless you tell us.
The blog is written under the auspices of Quirk eMarketing’s finance section, which has the misfortune to be based in Cape Town. So you will also see a strand reporting on developments in Southern African business and finance.
I love the look of the blog, it is very clean and not at all what you would expect from a financial blog.
Toby Guise is a WebPR Consultant in the field of financial services, having previously been an Account Director in corporate-banking public relations and a financial journalist. He lives in Cape Town, working for Quirk eMarketing in the area of Online Relationship Management for banks and other financial-service providers. This means facilitating communication between users and providers of financial products in the ‘Web2.0’ sphere – namely blogs, forums and personal home-pages.
There are only 4 posts at the moment (well, the blog was launched on the 1st of March) and I really enjoyed the post titled "Credit where credit’s due: South Africa’ National Credit Act" which takes a good look at South Africa’s National Credit Act. Not all the content on this site will have much relevance to the South African market because, as the "About" page suggests, this blog has a very British focus.