How HDFC Life created a community platform with the Memory Project

Very few brands in India have been successful in creating communities. The Memory Project from HDFC Life has turned out to be one such community platform where people are sharing memories of their loved ones who are no more. Started in 2018, the digital platform has reached to million users with an average time spent between three and five minutes

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For an insurance brand, the emotional connect with the audience plays a huge role in brand building. While several brands in the category have created path-breaking ads, HDFC Life went a step ahead and started The Memory Project, a content initiative, in 2018.

The digital platform has been designed as a community that allows users to share memories of their lost loved ones.

In 2018, the brand started showcasing the videos, photos, articles, notes submitted by users on the platform to help people go beyond sorrow and cherish the lives of their loved ones lost.

Vishal Subharwal

Vishal Subharwal, Executive Vice-President and Head of E-commerce and Digital Marketing at HDFC Life, said that via this initiative, the brand has never looked at the performance marketing perspective in terms of generating leads.

It is more like a social endeavour without linking any product to it, building brand affinity, recall and to increase positive sentiment among the target audience. 

The brand is annually investing 3 to 5% of its overall marketing budget in this project. Without putting any timeline to the initiative, and taking it ahead as an ongoing activity, the digital platform is growing organically.

The stories of the people the portal has highlighted through videos reached over 20 million people cumulatively over the last 2 editions. In terms of the on-ground activity, it reached out to almost 800 people. With an average of three to five minutes that people are spending on the site, the brand has been using standard tracking tools to measure the reach of the people.

The Memory Project is an extension to HDFC Life’s philosophy ‘Sar Utha Kar Jiyo'. The digital part of the campaign is being handled by Dentsu Webchutney and the on-ground part is being taken care of by OML.

In its initial leg, the brand started to reach out to people, urging them to share their stories.

Currently, it uses its own platform and digital marketing efforts for the same.

Being an insurance provider, the portal remains highly regulated in terms of what content is being shared on the portal. To maintain its tonality, the UGC is firstly passed through the filter to omit anything irrelevant and grammatically incorrect.

With the massive restrictions the brand has in terms of the partnerships, Subharwal said that is the reason the brand does not intend to go for brand partnerships for the portal for better reach or curate more content. 

The portal: