Bringing a consumer approach to finance.
Nippon India Mutual Fund personalises marketing campaigns to increase investments for millions.
Folios affected with personalised messaging through automated campaign
Potentially reach tens of millions of young Indian investors by tapping into digital consumer culture
Scale personalisation and more targeted messaging to millions of customers
Encourage continued customer engagement by connecting people with relevant investment opportunities
Achieved 90% higher open rates and 150% higher click-through rates for SIP Win-Back campaign
Delivered personalised messaging to 9.9 million folios using 100% automated engagement campaign
Saw insight-based campaigns contributing more than 20% to digital business
Run up to 60 A/B tests annually to optimise content, creative and customer journeys
Arpanarghya Saha honed his digital marketing expertise in the worlds of retail and e-commerce where he learnt to find creative ways to connect with customers. When he joined Nippon India Mutual Fund (NIMF) as Chief Digital Officer, he was completely unfamiliar with mutual funds. But that was the exact combination that NIMF was looking for: someone who would understand how to bring friendly, innovative and personalised digital experiences that would attract investing novices.
NIMF is one of India’s leading and fastest-growing assets management companies with more than 9.9 million folios under management. For more than 20 years, the company has worked with investors big and small across India to provide wealth creation opportunities through a wide range of investment products and assets. With more than 1.3 billion people in India and around 70% of the population under the age of 40, NIMF sees huge potential for growth by tapping into the digital consumer culture of India’s youth.
“Savings and finances aren’t always top of mind for young people,” says Saha. “That’s why we need to make our products and services easy to understand and relate to — similar to approaches taken at more traditional e-commerce companies. We focus on making things digital, extremely user-friendly and highly personalised to capture people’s attention.”
NIMF builds its customer-friendly digital strategy around partner engagements and digital marketing initiatives across Google, Facebook and other popular digital media. To gain the edge over competitors, the company turned to Adobe Experience Cloud applications and partners to build a unified marketing approach that reaches customers across the digital space.
Partner DWAO supports NIMF by working with Adobe Analytics and Adobe Target to capture the insights and run tests that help them better understand the experience customers want and attract new customers. Meanwhile, Hansa Cequity helps translate all the customer insights into more relatable, effective cross-sell and upsell campaigns managed with Adobe Campaign to retain customers and deepen engagement.
“We love working with great partners,” says Saha. “DWAO and Hansa Cequity support different, but critical areas. We learn, challenge and push each other to move towards a common goal of getting more Indians excited about and participating in investment opportunities.”
“We try to keep an open mind because customers’ priorities change daily, especially in a fast-paced digital world. Adobe Analytics gives us the real-time data we need to stay on top of changes.”
National Lead, Digital Business, Nippon India Mutual Fund
Grabbing investors’ attention at every stage
NIMF offers a wide variety of products aimed at helping every type of customer, from beginner to expert, build more wealth. The Simply Save App focuses on helping newcomers dip their toes into investing with simple, low-risk funds. The WhatsApp for Business Chatbot provides a friendly and familiar way for customers to buy funds, explore product recommendations and become more knowledgeable investors. The Business Easy App, powered by AI, focuses on the needs of independent financial advisors by providing financial insights so that they can provide smarter advice for their clients.
One of the biggest focuses for NIMF in recent years comes round systematic investment plans (SIP) where investors make regular payments into a mutual fund. This is a more disciplined approach to investing as money is automatically funneled into a selected mutual fund at regular intervals continuing the investor’s wealth creation journey with NIMF. Working with partners and Adobe Experience Cloud applications, NIMF created personalised campaigns and targeted experiences that helped increase SIP transactions by 20%.
The first step in successfully connecting with customers is understanding their exact interests and where they are in considering or managing investment services. DWAO worked with Adobe Analytics to help define and gain clarity about how customers move through the conversion funnel. Propensity modelling, powered by machine learning through Adobe Sensei, helps NIMF see the most effective way to communicate with each customer.
“We try to keep an open mind because customers’ priorities change daily, especially in a fast-paced digital world,” says Prachi Verma, National Lead, Digital Business at Nippon India Mutual Fund. “Adobe Analytics gives us the real-time data we need to stay on top of changes. A customer might react positively to a campaign one day but then react negatively the next time if their situations change. We need to be ready to react to the data we’re seeing to optimise campaigns.”
Tailoring the best journeys for each customer
An essential part of engaging customers at NIMF involves using data analytics to create personas for customers based on information such as how they want to connect with NIMF, what type of content interests them and their investment style, such as how long they like to hold onto investments. Adobe Target uses this data to optimise web and app experiences through personalisation and testing.
“Every year we run upwards of 60 A/B tests so we know if we’re choosing the best content, creative and journeys for customers,” says Saha. “One customer might want a very simple, streamlined investment journey, while another might want to take the time to read everything. We want to offer those highly personalised experiences to every customer.”
For SIP campaigns, testing with Adobe Target revealed some ways to increase SIP investment. A pop-up window on the website informed viewers about the benefits of an SIP and this straightforward awareness campaign increased SIP transactions. For SIP customers who requested to cancel their SIP plans, a call-to-action invited them to put a pause on investing instead, resulting in a huge boost to SIP retention numbers.
“Adobe Target enables us to experiment with customer interactions and find ways to improve customer experiences,” says Saha. “We discovered that it’s not just about SIP investment. Encouraging customers to interact with an online calculator or redirecting their interests to a different type of investment fund can lead to more active investors and happy customers.”
“Adobe Campaign enables us to create highly successful campaigns that require no manual intervention. It saves us a lot of time so that we can focus on testing better ways to use insight to power effective messages and improve customer experiences.”
Chief Digital Officer, Nippon India Mutual Fund
Automating personalised messages to affecting 9.9 million folios
The customer insights from Adobe Analytics and Adobe Target all feed into Adobe Campaign, where Hansa Cequity designs and operates cross-sell and upsell campaigns. With Adobe Campaign, NIMF delivers highly personalised digital campaigns that reach customers across their preferred channels. Frequent email responders receive emails, mobile app users are contacted through app push communication and SMS is used for customers who prefer that channel. These personalised campaigns contribute to 20% of digital business, demonstrating the power of using data to inform interactions with customers.
The SIP Win-Back campaign aims at encouraging customers whose SIP terms have expired to restart their investment. With Adobe Campaign, NIMF infuses the messaging with up to 28 personalised elements based on what types of SIPS the customers had, when they expired and tailored calls to action.
While complex, this campaign is also 100% automated. The in-house data warehouse system alerts Adobe Campaign when a customer’s SIP has expired. This automatically triggers a series of messages that use known customer data and behaviours to personalise content the targeted set of customers.
The results of the SIP Win-Back campaign have been excellent. Open rates are 90% higher than average campaigns, with 150% higher click rates. “Adobe Campaign enables us to create highly successful campaigns that require no manual intervention,” says Saha. “It saves us a lot of time so that we can focus on testing better ways to use insight to power effective messages and improve customer experiences.”
“We consider ourselves to be an e-commerce company that offers products made for everyone online. By focusing on customer-friendly experiences, we aim to be a top brand for investors.”
Chief Digital Officer, Nippon India Mutual Fund
Rethinking finance experiences
NIMF plans to expand segmentation for even more accurate targeting and engagement for the company’s millions of customers. Adobe Analytics will provide the real-time insights needed to keep up with changing markets and eventually deliver real-time personalisation.
“When I first joined, NIMF had a digital penetration of less than 15%,” says Saha. “In just a few years, we’ve reached 53% and we’re aiming even higher. We don’t consider our competition to be banks or investment firms. We consider ourselves to be an e-commerce company that offers products made for everyone online. By focusing on customer-friendly experiences, we aim to be a top brand for investors.”