Most South Africans will not be able to retire comfortably. Based on current data, this is a fact.

A recent study by 10X Investments showed that 62% of South Africans are not confident that they will be able to draw an income in retirement, with 41% of people having made no provision for retirement at all.

The main findings of the 10X South African Retirement Reality Report is summarised in this infographic:Source: 10X Investments

The 10X Investments South African Retirement Reality Report also highlights that almost half (40%) of South African women are not saving or investing any money at all for retirement.

“Women tend to prioritise expenditure for living costs associated with childcare and parenting over planning for retirement,” the report states.

These findings are extremely worrying, if you take into account the fact that the average life expectancy of a South African woman is about five years more than that of their male counterparts, according to Stats SA. This means that South African women will have to make do for longer, with less resources, when it comes to retirement.

So, what can you as a fund marketer do to make your investment products more accessible to South African women, and in fact to all South Africans who are not yet investing enough for retirement? And how can digital platforms and tools help you reach this goal?

What you need to do

1.     Use social media to spread your message

Social media can be an incredible tool to get your message out to your target audience. To make the most of it, make sure your messages are educational – as opposed to being only promotional. You need to explain to South Africans why investing is important and empower them to make better decisions to secure their financial future.

Use innovative content marketing tactics, like videos or interactive polls, to reach an even broader audience.

2.     Make sure your website is up to scratch

To attract more investors to your funds you need a great website. If someone is interested in investing, or simply want to find out more about what investing in your funds entail they should be able to find all the information they need on your website, without having to struggle or click around endlessly.

Your website should lay out the various investment options you offer in a logical way (like through an interactive fund explorer tool) coupled with fund information written in plain, easy-to-understand language. Fund managers often make the mistake of using a lot of jargon in their communications which can deter investors.

In a recent interview with Kurtosys, Elize Botha, MD of Old Mutual Unit Trusts stressed this point: “As an industry I really believe we do have clients’ interests at heart but we have this way of speaking to people – using a lot of jargon. We often don’t even realise we are doing it, as we are so used to the jargon. But it is difficult for investors to understand, and what people don’t understand they don’t trust. So, I think one of the biggest things we need to do is speak to people in a way they understand.”

3.     Embrace digital investment tools

To reach a broader portion of the population you need to make investing as easy as possible. This means allowing people to start the investment process online, or through a mobile app, and eliminating unnecessary paperwork.

There are many routes you can take to make your investment process easier and more pleasant for investors – from robo-advisor platforms that allow people to start setting up their investment portfolios without any industry knowledge or the help of a financial advisor, to enabling investors to complete forms digitally, so they don’t have to print and scan anything.

The bottom line

To attract more investors asset managers need to improve their digital footprint. For ideas on how to do this, fund marketers should look at a variety of sources, including disruptors in the market, such as robo-advisors who build engaging tools to encourage investors online. Cutting-edge websites can be found from the likes of challenger banks, crypto-currency based services and even fintechs. It’s also well worth looking outside of the financial services industry to see the best examples of digital marketing in action.

The future is digital and for your firm to remain competitive your digital game has to be strong. So, polish your social media platforms, website and investment process now, there’s no time to waste.