A new service officially launched at TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2017 this week: Credit Hero, which wants to help you better understand your credit score and teach you how to improve it.
TechCrunch reports that Credit Hero aims to take a more conversational approach to create a friendlier experience (yes, even with a bot) that will encourage people to not only understand how to improve their credit, but to be able to check on their score without fear.
“One in two people have subprime credit — it’s the majority of Americans,” said Co-Founder Nicole Sanchez. “Credit monitoring services are great, but if most haven’t checked, there’s still a massive opportunity. What we discovered is most people had not checked because they were afraid of what they were going to see. We talk about how financial distress is the new normal, but it really is. Most people aren’t in a secure situation.”
Users start out on Credit Hero with a conversation that tries to do a quick diagnosis of what the person is concerned with, building a sort of rapport with the user. Users can then sign up, link their credit report and get a “credit prescription.” That process is based on user behavior to create a more customized experience — and to continue building up that trust.
Sanchez and her team wanted to create something that was easily accessible for everyone — even those who aren’t tech-savvy. With that in mind, there is no app. Instead, Credit Hero is a mobile web interface, which makes it accessible to more people, including those who might not have access to the best devices or internet connections.
“We find most people are either confused or concerned, but just asking that question establishes comfort,” said Sanchez. “The next thing we want to talk about is goals. Do they want to lower debt, buy a home. Talking in an aspirational way is important. There’s a lot of behavioral economics that goes into it. This is someone who is probably distressed.”
Of course, users want to know how to improve their scores in order to fulfill goals, such as buying a home or refinancing. According to Sanchez, Credit Hero users are able to boost their scores by 50 points within the first six weeks or so.
While the company doesn’t charge for its service right now, there seems to be natural pathways to monetization, like lead-generation. But there will also be challenges, since Credit Hero has established competition, such as Credit Karma. But Sanchez believes the trust Credit Hero builds with its user base will enable it to be seen as more than a simple utility.
“We’re gonna add more info to make you most informed on all the offers you have,” said Sanchez. “The next innovation in FinTech is really around the execution gap, how do I get from point A to point B. Okay, I have this score, how do I get there. That’s where Credit Hero sits.”