We follow the path of responsive innovation: Anil Ramachandran, IndusInd Bank
EVP & Head, Marketing & Corp Communications and Retail Unsecured Assets at IndusInd Bank tells us how the bank’s focus on responsive innovation converts into customer convenience
Published - 14-January-2019
Innovation is the buzz word across sectors, be it when it comes to the product, packaging and even in marketing. However, one product that has seen little to no change is plastic money or more precisely put credit and debit cards. And, it’s here that IndusInd Bank has brought in two plastic product and service innovations.
The bank recently introduced the ‘IndusInd Bank DUO Card’, a plastic card which works as a as a credit-cum-debit card. The insight behind this product was that as people wanted to carry less, a consumer banking with a bank didn’t require two plastics to address their financial needs. Explains Anil Ramachandran - EVP & Head, Marketing & Corp Communications and Retail Unsecured Assets at IndusInd Bank, “This card can be used as an ATM/Debit card and if you are credit worthy, we will put the credit product on the other side of the card. This essentially addresses the need to travel light, have less plastics in your wallet and ultimately addresses a very significant insight from customers that when we bank with you why do we need to have so many cards.”
The company also undertook a 360 degree campaign with the TVCs, featuring actor Boman Irani, having the theme of ‘Keep It Single’ that reiterates the fact that a single card would be enough for any kind of transaction and details the functionality of the dual use card. Interestingly though IndusInd Bank has used celebrities, including actor Farhan Akhtar, in the past, Ramachandran says that the bank doesn’t have any brand ambassadors or endorsers but instead looks for the person who is the perfect fit as per the campaign objectives.
The second innovation done by IndusInd Bank is the IndusInd Bank Nexxt Credit Card’, a credit card which enables customer to choose the mode of payment at point of sale (EMI or redeeming reward points). Simply put, the card has three Push Buttons – press the first button and you can use the card as a credit card, the second button allows the user to redeem their reward points anywhere at the tap of a button while the final button gives the user the option to not only pay by EMI but also choose the duration of the EMI payment cycle. To promote this product, IndusInd Bank has adopted a Digital route with small format online videos explaining the functionality of the card and it used roadblocks across all key digital properties to reach its TG. Ramachandran says, “We have constantly followed a path of what we call responsive innovation, finding pain points from customers and finding a service or solution to address those pain points.”
He adds that that the response both the campaigns and the product have been “phenomenal” and adds that the bank will “overshoot the numbers quite easily” the target that it had set.
While Digital has seen increased spends YoY, it currently makes up about 30 per cent of the ad-spends from a budgetary perspective. Being a BFSI player, the Digital forms a crucial piece of the media mix and explaining the challenges Ramachandran says, “We depend a lot on performance based digital marketing. For us, my campaign should not only communicate, but I am not also trying to educate, adopt, and sell to the consumer and I am trying to do all this at the same time.”
He continues, “I have to show the customer something which he likes, have to intrigue him, tell him this is something that you want, and then get him to express his interest and with additional products, like insurance for example, you take him through the entire journey and finish the transaction and payment right there, making the conversion to end sale process very measurable.”
Finally commenting on IndusInd Bank’s marketing philosophy Ramachandran says, “Whenever we have advertised, it has always been a product or a service. We have not done any brand advertising. It has always been to try and bring about and underline the journey of responsive innovation. Every campaign of ours has always been of new and innovative. The focus is not just on responsive innovation, but how that responsive innovation converts into customer convenience. The underlying philosophy of our bank is we are the most convenient bank to bank with and everything that we do from a communication perspective tries to underline that.”
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