Milind Shah, an Ahmedabad based IFA, has created a social media group called It’s All About Money on Telegram (a messenger app somewhat like WhatsApp) with an objective to help advisors resolve issues related to their business.
Created four years ago, this Telegram group has over 2,100 distributors across the country as members.
Sharing the rationale for creating this group, Milind says, “IFAs face several business issues and struggle to resolve them. Many have told me they keep calling AMCs and distribution service centres, but to no avail. In such a situation, IFAs in B15 cities have nowhere to go. We have members in our group, who have gone through similar hurdles. They can help others overcome such challenges.”
Milind claims that the group resolves the problems of IFAs faster than the AMC’s customer care. It’s All About Money has 8 sub-groups, each focusing on a particular area – like mutual funds, insurance, motivational books and so on. Besides IFAs, the group also has AMC officials who guide the other members.
Apart from business queries, this group helps members in getting new business across geographies. Sharing one such instance Milind said, “A few days ago, a Nagpur based group member got a lead in Jamnagar. He did not have to travel to Jamnagar to close this deal as a group member from Jamnagar helped him in client acquisition, that too with a cheque of Rs.16 lakh.”
Milind says that group members have bonded closely like a family. Members arrange for everything, from booking a hotel to picking you from the airport, when a group member travels to their city.
Members also have knowledge sharing sessions where they invite experts from different sectors to share their success stories, give business development tips and enlighten them on the latest trends in technology. Similarly, the group invites fund officials to talk about their new initiatives.
Milind is active on the group platform after 9 pm; he relies on a few other knowledgeable volunteers to ensure smooth administration of the group. IFAs can become a member of this group only by referrals.
The group also has a code of conduct. It does not allow personal chatter or sharing of irrelevant posts, Milind said. In addition, it is compulsory for IFAs to mention their name and city. “We do not support activities which can disrupt business. We only talk about business growth,” he added.
Talking about his plans for the future, Milind says, “We are planning to provide all necessary materials to IFAs like a biometric device for KYC and software that can help them grow business.”