Think BIG : Think Retail Debt
Opening Batsman

Are you in a T-20 game when dealing with your clients or are you playing a test match? For far too long, investors have been coming to MF distributors at the peak of a bull market, in the quest for making a quick buck on a hot equity fund. Distributors have thus acquired many new clients effectively in a T-20 format : instant big hits are what are sought. Your opening batsman - the first fund you offer your client - is thus most likely the equity fund that has maximum momentum behind it. The pressure on your opening batsman to deliver instant hits is very high - and your relationship with this new client is effectively dependent on how many big hits this opening batsman is able to deliver. If your opening batsman fails - because the market turns - that may well signal a quick end to this new relationship.

Its time for us to ask this question : when we acquire a new client, should we be playing a short term T-20 game or are we trying to build a long term relationship in a test match format? If you really want to build a long term relationship, your approach should be test match oriented. Think of what kind of an opening batsman you would send in for the first innings of a test match. You would ideally want a batsman who negotiates a fresh pitch, fresh pacemen and a shiny new ball without taking too many risks - and thus builds a sound platform to launch a big score. Think of a new customer relationship - the first couple of months is when your client tracks every action of yours very closely, when mis-steps can prove costly as your client has little or no trust in this new advisor. Over time, your client relaxes and is more willing to trust your advice. This happens when the first few months have begun on the right note. Your opening batsman in this relationship is the one who has to negotiate this difficult period of the initial couple of months. Who should you send in from your team of funds to open your innings and help build a solid foundation?

The answer is clear to anyone who genuinely aspires to build a long term relationship : its liquid funds with SMS Invest and ATM facilities. This opening batsman is unlikely to disappoint on performance, is likely to provide comfort with its superior convenience, and in the initial testing period, will run a few quick singles to put up a steady start on the scorecard. After all, if you are able to show to your client a much better utilisation of his idle savings account balances within the first month itself, wouldn't you have scored a few quick singles without taking too many risks? Once you've got off to a steady start and the new customer becomes a little more confident about you, that's the time you can gently guide him towards the more market return oriented products like hybids and equity funds, after gauging his risk appetite.

Is this a better way to open an innings in a test match ? Or would you still want to open your innings with an equity fund and start explaining market volatility within the first month itself, if the portfolio statement at the end of month 1 shows a negative return due to market volatility?

When starting a long term relationship, your opening batsman plays a crucial role. Build stronger long term relationships with new clients by choosing your opening batsman wisely. A steady start rather than a flashy, risky one will enable you to offer many more products as you build the relationship, and thus capture a much larger wallet share over time. Think BIG - Think Retail Debt !

To know more about the opening batsman from Reliance Mutual Fund, (Click Here)

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