Recently, I read a report that ranked Kenya as one the more innovative countries on the planet.The article quoting the World Economic Forum survey said, “With economic growth improving significantly in the past decade, internet adoption increasing 39 percent and the country scoring highly in innovation and financial services in the World Economic Forum’s 2015 Global Competitiveness Report, there is a growing market for accounting practices in Kenya.”
Kenya has made great strides in financial inclusion thanks largely to m-pesa, a mobile money platform, that has now enrolled over 25 million adults. Using the mobile platform has transformed the lives of ordinary Kenyans, and as the report above suggests, has begun to create an opportunity for new services.
Today, governments all over the world are keen to rank high in surveys that track everything from the ease of doing business to internet access, safe public transportation and yes, innovation. And it is innovation in the financial domain that can hugely boost a country’s overall innovation quotient.
India has herself embarked on one of the world’s most ambitious financial inclusion with the PM’s Jan DhanYojana that aims to enable banks savings and transfers, insurance and pension payments. With new private banks and unified payment mechanisms now set to change the Indian landscape, platforms like m-pesa have the potential to transform the lives of tens of thousands of people. It also provides an opportunity for content creation that can reach the right target audience at the right time.
Here’s what key stakeholders in government and the private sector can do in the content domain
- E-mail campaigns: Use carefully-designed e-mailers to promote schemes that help people access government services, products and services in a timely manner.
- Financial literacy content: Stakeholders can be given tips and suggestions on how to handle money. So think explainer videos, infographics and short content that can be absorbed quickly
- Customized content: Content must necessarily be tailored for different user group and domains- e.g. Self-help groups, housing, educational loans, healthcare information, all disseminated in regional languages.
- News feeds: byte-sized news feeds can help the cause of overall literacy as well, not just financial. So information on hospitals, local banks, market developments, fraud, and helplines can make all the difference.
In today’s content-driven world, financial inclusion is the next frontier for content that makes a difference. Using appropriate technology platforms, companies, NGOs, government bodies, schools and so on can reach out in ways unheard of before. If Kenya has shown the way, no reason why India cannot, and also go up in global rankings on innovation.