New website takes social approach to personal finance

December 16, 2011

| MoneyRates.com Senior Financial Analyst, CFA

The Internet is a great source of information on personal finance, but often this information lacks the personal touch. The new website MyMoneyCircles.com aims to provide that personalized element by taking an interactive, social media-style approach.

Though it focuses on the human element, MyMoneyCircles is anything but soft and fuzzy. The website refers to its approach as a "boot camp" for personal finance. But what exactly does a personal finance boot camp entail?

Getting financially fit

The boot camp method at MyMoneyCircles involves pushing participants to get their personal finances in the best shape possible. And the boot camp analogy is apt, because it highlights the simple fact that financial responsibility often isn't easy, and building robust savings accounts is often an act of sacrifice.

MyMoneyCircles will conduct a series of boot camps to address a variety of financial goals, including:

  • Saving money
  • Managing credit and debt
  • Protecting family and assets
  • Planning for the future

The personalized support system at MyMoneyCircles is designed to help users make the changes necessary to meet these goals. By engaging participants throughout the process, and providing advice tailored to their needs, the site aims to lead them each step of the way toward financial improvement.

Here are some of the methods MyMoneyCircles will use to engage, encourage, and energize those who want to improve their personal finances:

  • Personal assessment. A 10-question quiz will kick off each boot camp, to provide users with a clearer picture of their needs on each topic.
  • Customized advice and education. Participants will receive emails related to their areas of interest and access to online materials. Online resources will allow users to submit questions to financial experts through MyMoneyCircles.
  • A defined action plan. MyMoneyCircles will present participants with specific steps designed to get them to stop procrastinating and to start meeting their goals.
  • Community support. MyMoneyCircles is designed for users to share their personal experiences with other members of the community, especially those with similar needs and goals. In this way, users can help each other make progress.
  • Continued growth opportunties. MyMoneyCircles aims to provide multiple levels of informative material, allowing users to build on what they've learned.

Access to expertise

Central to the program is the expertise of Lynnette Khalfani-Cox. Khalfani-Cox, also known as "The Money Coach," is a best-selling author and frequently-quoted expert in the national media. Khalfani-Cox's input drives both the design and content of MyMoneyCircles, and she will answer individual participant questions too. A variety of financial specialists--full disclosure, this author will be one of them--will also be available to provide advice.

Access to this expertise will begin in early January, but those interested can sign up for the first boot camp now at MyMoneyCircles.com.

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