Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance, which recently initiated Junior Football Camp across 120 Indian cities as a brand building exercise, is all set to incorporate fresh rural communication plans in its marketing strategy.
Bajaj Allianz, a relatively new entrant in the highly cluttered insurance category, plans to position its brand differently than that of its competitors. Unlike other players in the insurance sector, the company’s rural-centric marketing plan comes in the wake of its successful Below the Line (BTL) activities in over 100 markets in India for Guaranteed Maturity Insurance Plan (GMIP).
Rituraj Bhattacharya, Head – Market Management, Bajaj Allianz Life Insurance informed that last year, the company’s campaign around lowest single premium ULIP, with the single minimum premium of Rs 5000 was a big success in rural India. Through the campaign, the insurer achieved 20 per cent of its sale targets from the rural markets of India. Planning to gradually spend its marketing budget for 2012-13, the brand will spend 30 per cent of its total marketing budget on BTL activities. The company also has a new insurance plan exclusively for rural India in pipeline.
Bhattacharya shared that during the regulatory changes by IRDA last year in ULIP plans, the company did undergo tough times in order to achieve its sale targets but the brand message remained the same and since then, the company has registered robust growth in the Indian market.
Considering the proportion of insured Indians is just two per cent of the total population, Bajaj Allianz will expand its presence across several B and C towns of India through aggressive BTL activities. Being a sector that is considered ‘negative’, marketing is a very important factor in achieving sale targets, especially in the current cluttered space of insurance, Bhattacharya said.
The company has conducted various street plays in smaller towns of India to communicate the importance of insurance. “Our brand philosophy and positioning is very different. Usually, communications through marketing activities convey only five per cent of the total message to consumers. Therefore, our plan is to reach out to as many consumers as possible by engaging them in our communications on ground,” he asserted.
The company has also received critical responses from its recently held Junior Football Camp that involved over 700 schools from over 120 Indian cities. When asked whether the company is planning to change its media plan and spend more on BTL exercises than ATL, post the Football campaign, he said, “I would call it a brand building exercise rather than a campaign. We learnt important marketing lessons on how to involve consumers closely.”
Engaging consumers for building brands
Bajaj Allianz is a relatively new entrant in online insurance space too. While most insurance companies such as ICICI, HDFC, Kotak and Bharati Axa Life Insurance have launched online insurance plans, designed specially to target youth, Bajaj Allianz will gradually spend on the digital medium.
“It is an important medium for us. Recently, we received good response on digital and social media, but we will slowly approach this medium. However, digital is an integral part of our communication and it cannot be avoided anymore,” concluded Bhattacharya.