Systematic investment plans or SIPs have grown in popularity in the last few years. Of late, many IFAs have successfully run a SIP marathon activating 100 to 1500 SIPs in a single day. However, if we go back just to 2017, SIP campaign was a novel concept.
Amravati IFA Mahesh Gattani, Balaji Investments, first got the idea of a SIP campaign while attending Cafemutual Confluence 2016 (CC16). Inspired by the conference’s message that paperless was the future, he decided to run the SIP drive completely digitally. He set a target of 500 SIPs for himself.
In the sixth edition of Cafemutual IFA event, he shared his recipe for running a successful SIP drive.
To make the first ever SIP campaign a success, he followed a five-point process
- Identify clients who have an IIN (investor identification number) and active NACH mandate – He first shortlisted these clients as it was operationally easier to activate a SIP. In all he had 600 clients with IIN of which 500 had active NACH mandate
- Approach clients with existing SIPs for topping their investments
- Educate other clients (with no active SIP) on benefits and risks associated with SIP
- Share his own wealth creation story, which gave clients a relatable example of wealth creation power of SIPs
- Invest at least 1/3rd of the amount in debt or money market SIPs to protect your client’s portfolio against market volatility
Convincing clients to invest
In his session, Mahesh shared that his team approached clients who had active SIPs with a stirring message that they were running India’s first ever SIP campaign and requested them to be part of history. Luckily, markets were supportive. Having experienced good returns on their investments, clients agreed to give additional SIPs to Mahesh.
Next, he asked his team to approach clients who had not started a SIP. Sharing historical returns of RD (recurring deposit) post office deposit and insurance policies, they informed clients that they could have earned much higher returns if they had invested the same amount in an equity SIP. However, he also wanted to caution clients about risks of investing. So the team shared performance of different schemes to demonstrate that returns could vary.
However, despite these efforts they could only get 200 – 300 SIP applications.
To attract more applicants, he called his clients for an event at a Volkswagen showroom. The land rented to the dealership had been bought by Mahesh through his SIP investments. Narrating his inspiring story of investing in equity SIPS through market slumps and boom he told clients how SIP helped him create personal wealth.
Enthused by his story he received another 200 applications on the day.
In total, the team was able to collect 500 applications. They selected September 23, 2017 as the day to log-in the SIPs as it was a non-working day.
Mahesh acknowledged the strong support he received from his team and NSE officials, which helped him, make the campaign a success.
He also shared an important advice with advisors - during his first SIP drive and even in the subsequent SIP marathons run by him, his team and invested at least 1/3rd of the amount received in short term debt or liquid SIPs. According to him, it would shield the client’s portfolio in case of market volatility. Moreover, the client could easily withdraw the money without any charge in case of urgent liquidity requirement. His decision to invest 1/3rd of client’s money in debt paid off when markets turned volatile in 2018. He asks clients to be patient about their equity SIP investments and use the debt part of their portfolio for any short-term needs.
He urged fellow advisors to dream big and form a plan to achieve their goals, “nothing is impossible if we set our minds to it,” he said.