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#NewAge Business: CIOs leverage social media

Shubhra Rishi | July 24, 2014
Four Indian businesses decide to stop merely talking about social media and do something with it. Their stories show you what you could be missing out on.

Opening a New Customer Channel


Its extremely rare to see banks embark on anything socialor even talk about it. But ICICI has always done the unexpected and its social media push is the latest in a series of unexpected offerings for the young gen.  

 Launching an initiative known as Pockets for Facebook, the bank empowered its young fan base40 percent of which is under 34to carry out transactions on Facebook. The app requires a userwho also needs to be an ICICI customerto log on to her Facebook account and then on to Pockets and perform a one-time registration by entering her debit card number and pin. Further on, the app appears on a customers Facebook page and can be used to view accounts, make payments, transfer funds, and conduct other non-banking transactions.

Facebook is where young consumers are spending more and more time and the app enables them to carry out a wide set of transactions without having to leave the social media site, says Abonty Banerjee, GM and head-Digital, ICICI Bank.

 The apps unique feature Split n Share allows ICICI customers to divide and track group expenses and share them with friends on the site. If for example, you went out to the movies with friends and wanted to divvy up expenses later, Split n Share would allow you to inform your friends how much they owed you.

Another feature called Pay a Friend allows users to transfer funds to their friends without having to know their bank account details.

If this sounds simple, Banerjee says, that security is of utmost importance and the bank sensitizes customers at every step of their Pockets journey, stating that the application is completely safe to use as all types of authentications and transactions are carried out on ICICI Banks secured servers. And even if a users Facebook account is compromised, it still does not affect her her personal financial information and bank user ID. Banerjee went on to add that Pockets is as safe as their internet banking channel.

 For an initiative thats only two-and-a-half-months-old, the results have been extremely encouraging, says Sujit Ganguli, senior general manager and head corporate communications and brand at ICICI Bank. The project was jointly ventured by IT and marketing teams. They are also constantly collecting feedback from early adopters to further provide a more seamless experience to customers.

Primarily, the main objective, says Banerjee, is to be present in all channels and get on new channels before others. Further, the per-transaction cost for the bank is lower on digital channels compared to other traditional channels. Invariably, the banks larger goal is to attract newer, younger customers through this initiative.


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