Ruchika Jha

BFSI brands embrace AI-driven marketing tools; discuss upskilling for AI age

Industry experts discuss how brands adopt new inventions, help to upskill young professionals and leverage Quora.

Over time, artificial intelligence (AI) has evolved as an integral aspect of daily life and has become a catalyst for innovation for both individuals and organisations. This technological progress is further complemented by brands that have enhanced their SEO practices.

Industry professionals agree with the fact that AI will become a go-to tool for solving queries and amplifying its marketing policies.

At the recently held afaqs! x Quora - Unlock the Power of AI and Quora for Financial Services Marketing, industry stalwarts deliberated on AI’s importance for running campaigns, analysing customer preferences, generating ROI and more. The event was co-hosted in association with Quora.

The panelists comprised Alok Arya, chief marketing officer, Equentis Wealth; Amit Bhandare, head - marketing and corporate communications, Yes Securities; Anand Krishnan, chief marketing officer, ICICI Direct and Prasad Pimple, executive vice president and head - digital business, Kotak Life. The session was moderated by Venkata Susmita Biswas, executive editor, afaqs!

With regards to how much of a brand’s work has become efficient with the use of AI, Pimple says, “We have been using AI for a long time. Several brands have been using it to retarget and remarket their campaigns. The entire biddable platforms - be it Google or Meta, are all driven by AI. We have been adjusting ourselves in a way Google’s ecosystem is using its algorithms. The only new twist that happened is the power of computing which went into the model of such algorithms.”

Technology and brands are adapting to new inventions from introducing chatbots for immediate response to queries, to bringing credible information to its audience. In the current media and marketing landscape, organisations are recruiting talents, thus increasing its strength. Talking about how companies focus on upskilling its executive professionals from the AI point of view, Arya explains, “At the end of the day, not everyone can be a coder. There is something that we know called reverse mentoring and I believe in it profoundly. The younger professionals have a lot more to teach us and they are far more exposed in many ways that we might play a slightly negative role of mentor at times. If you are not open to being open, that will be the curtain that will keep us away from being a better marketer rather than being a mediocre marketer.”

Adding to what Arya said, Krishnan notes that there has to be an organisational effort to bring in learnings of new technology and innovation that are taking place in this particular space. “If a brand is not investing in upskilling people to write the new wave that will be coming in the area of marketing, then it might be left behind because, in marketing, change is the only constant. Therefore, learning becomes the important part of what you do.”

However, Bhandare expresses a different viewpoint stating that he believes in learning by doing. “I ensure that my team members work on every new tool and software that is available. I have urged my designers to start working on Midjourney, a generative AI program and service. Marketing does not work on theory. One has to make his/her hands dirty and execute strategies practically. It is okay if they fail as it will help them in learning and using tools effectively,” he notes.

Quora, a social question-and-answer platform, has recently emerged as a valuable tool for marketers, enabling direct interaction with a diverse and knowledge-seeking audience. Marketers leverage the platform in various ways to promote their brands and campaigns, showcasing their expertise and fostering trust among potential customers.

Talking about the importance of Quora from an SEO standpoint, Krishnan says, “We want to experiment with everything that is out there so we put some amount in our budget and see how it works for us. Quora is now becoming an integral part of our SEO strategy. The first and foremost reason is that it is a high-intent platform. People who are visiting the platform are looking for information and I believe that the best way to convert a potential customer into a customer is to feed him/her with information which has a high amount of authority.”

“It also helps us pick areas where customers are more receptive from a content strategy standpoint. It assists us to increase page traffic on our pages because we spend lots of time and effort in building our financial content,” he adds.

Arya notes that the audience coming to Quora is of high intent and is looking for a concise answer. “As a customer, Quora is a credible and authentic source of information. There is a difference between facts and floating information. There is so much information that we are not able to figure out what is wrong and right. 95% of the Indian diaspora do not understand this as they feel that what they watch on YouTube or WhatsApp is news. India is in build mode for the next 15 years. It has already been from the last 20 years and will be. For marketers, Quora is a good platform and the content written on it is out of experience,” he adds.

Watch the full session here:

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