Launching Betterment Everyday

To say that fintech is booming may be an understatement. The market is predicted to grow 74 percent between 2019 and 2025, according to recent forecasts, as earlier entrants in the space mature and new startups emerge to make financial services digitally accessible and easier to use.

Betterment, a model of fintech success, is a smart money manager that helps consumers plan for retirement, invest for the future and put their money to work — all at a much lower cost than a traditional advisor. Since the beginning of our partnership in 2016, Mission North has helped to turn the company into a renowned consumer financial investment brand.

2019 brought a new communications challenge. Our overall goal was to help evolve Betterment’s brand from a “robo-advisor” to a money management platform for every part of consumers’ financial lives. In advance of the launch of a new checking and savings product in July, Mision North planned to prime audiences for future product news and set the foundation for stories focused on Betterment’s consumer-first ethos through a series of data-rich stories tied to industry milestones. 

This strategy came to life with a series of creative data campaigns. By analyzing the impact of the gig economy on Americans’ retirement plans, Betterment saw coverage in the Washington Post, AARP, TIME, CNBC and Consumer Affairs, among other top business and technology publications.

Another survey investigated investor sentiment 10 years after the financial crisis, garnering coverage in the Washington Post, Money, Fortune, Axios, CNBC and many others. 

Mission North offered Betterment executives for expert commentary during relevant news cycles, including the government shutdown, tax season and the rise of high-interest savings accounts. This strategy yielded podcast interviews and expert broadcast commentary — as well as opportunities for Betterment to advocate for a consumer-first approach to banking.

For the launch of Betterment’s cash management suite, Mission North and Betterment collaborated on a narrative that would further highlight its improvement upon legacy banking. The company’s ethos is reflected in the product with a no-fee checking account, ATM-fee reimbursements, and a dashboard that offers a complete view of a consumer’s financial assets, including investments outside of Betterment. 

The narrative resonated with journalists and led to more than 40 feature articles detailing Betterment’s product news on the day of launch. The most prominent pieces included The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, The Economist and CNBC. Mission North also secured broadcast opportunities with Cheddar TV and Fortune.

The waitlist for Betterment Checking accounts grew beyond the company’s goal within hours of launch, proving earned media’s ability to drive customer demand and shape brand perception.

Read the full case study here.