NRImatters.com is a portal targeted at NRIs, PIOs and India-centric community organisations around the world which offers information and advice on issues related to finance, investments, realty etc. The portal is owned and managed by Mumbai-based digital agency Experience Commerce, and has Kotak Mahindra Bank as a banking partner. Recently, NRImatters.com ran a contest called 'Power Podium' which would give three NRIs the opportunity to speak about cultural, legal or investment matters at the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas 2011, New Delhi. After submitting their applications, the NRIs with the most endorsements, collected through digital media, like email, Facebook, Twitter and bloggers, were Arminder Singh and Karl Jacob (USA), and Neena (UAE).
Virat Diwanji, head branch banking – Kotak Mahindra Bank, responded to Campaign India's questions about how important communicating to the NRI market is for the bank, and the role digital plays in connecting with them:
CI: What were the benefits of associating with NRImatters.com for Kotak Mahindra?
VD: NRIs are a very important target segment for Kotak Mahindra Bank. When we started to build our brand in this segment, we looked for an opportunity where we can add genuine value to them. That is when Experience Commerce came up with NRI Matters - to create a platform that provides a solution for all their needs - Investment , Law, Culture, Finance and Real estate. We strongly believe that this portal will play an important role in the life of NRIs and we’re lucky to get a great name as NRI Matters – which symbolizes that NRIs matter to us.
CI: What does the NRI market look like for Kotak?
VD: Indian diaspora comprising of NRI and PIO are a large community spread across over 150 countries globally. While there is no accurate data on Indian diaspora, it is expected to be over 29 million and it continues to grow. With the strength of Indian economy and emotional connect with homeland, NRIs form an important part of Kotak's business plan. We continue to create innovative products and interactive tools to make it simple and convenient for NRIs to connect with us. NRI banking is a focus area of Kotak and we have made significant progress in the last few years.
CI: What were the benefits of aligning with the Power Podium initiative, and the importance of going on digital for such an audience?
VD: Kotak Mahindra Bank has been a partner of OIFC (Overseas Indian Facilitation Centre ) and regularly participates in various NRI-centric events like PBD (Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas), SEF ( Sankara Eye Foundation), GSOD ( Gujarati Samaj of Detroit). When Experience Commerce came up with an idea to create a platform where the NRI can raise the voice and create a large community, we immediately came on board as Partner of this initiative. This serves a bigger issue of getting NRIs’ voices heard, and present them at right forums such as Pravasi Bhartiya Diwas. The initiative was very successful as we got over 13,000 sign-ups in a month’s time. The top 25 were shortlisted based on the quality of ideas, its originality & endorsements, and all them have become Power NRIs to contribute to NRI Matters. The 3 winners who were chosen by the Jury, which comprised eminent personalities like Mr PK Agarwal (Global CEO of TIE), will attend the PBD in Jan. The profile of people who participated includes IITians, doctors, businesswomen, lawyers, consultants, managers, students and housewives.
We decided to largely go digital and social for this initiative as it is the most participative medium available. The campaign required a huge interaction between NRIs and the consumption of this medium is very high amongst them. Hence it was very natural for us to go digital for this campaign.
Visit NRImatters.com for more details