In today’s new normal, global economies, businesses and individuals have been significantly impacted. For Insurance providers, ‘business as usual’ has changed for the foreseeable future and businesses ranging from small brokers to multinational Insurance companies are finding new ways to deliver solutions based on different consumer needs, provider capabilities and geographical locations.

Insurance carriers and brokers used to rely heavily on meeting in person, where they got to know their customers and were able to build relationships, and review coverages and financial plans with their clients seated across from them. For many, pivoting to digital models is daunting, and having to do so almost overnight seemed like an almost impossible task. For an industry reliant on face-to-face interaction and communication, the time has come to address a crucial question: How can we best acquire and serve our customers now?

Serving customers as individuals

Helping customers manage and mitigate risk is of the utmost importance for an Insurance provider going into 2022. Research shows that financial institutions (which includes the insurance industry) that focus on a client-centric platform are 60% more profitable than businesses focused on their own bottom line. Providers who focus on delivering on their promise and focus on their customers needs online and offline, lay the foundation for long term relationships where revenue will grow – through renewals and account development. Satisfied and loyal customers are more likely to leave a positive, online review and recommend you to their family and friends. All of these factors contribute to the continued growth and success for companies willing to invest in their customer base.  

Many businesses tend to focus growth marketing efforts on net new business and invest more heavily in demand and lead generation marketing efforts. Marketing to existing customers is often an afterthought or missed completely. There is tremendous opportunity, though, for Insurance providers who focus on existing customers, rather than spread themselves thin across a large and often unqualified set of leads. Retaining and growing customers requires personalized engagement which takes into account existing coverages and adding value based on what the customer wants and needs. Insurance providers who are able to translate the value that their products provide to their customers’ needs through their marketing channels will be more successful. And those who are not, open themselves up to competitors who have the tools and abilities to drive and nurture those desired personalized conversations.

Create new access points for broker-client communication

The Insurance industry has long been a laggard in adopting and leveraging digital business models. Insurance companies, MGAs and Brokers who fell into that category quickly realized that they needed to adopt a more digital mindset in order to be top-of-mind with their customers and succeed against their digitally-enabled competitors. By adopting digital tools, not only are businesses able to increase the opportunity to engage with new or existing customers but also able to realize internal efficiencies including optimizing how they share information, collaborate and educate. With today’s more digitally savvy consumer, it’s crucial for businesses to be available wherever and whenever their customers want to engage with the information they need. This means creating new access points and channels for engagement, sales, servicing and on-going education.

Automate CRM

In the age of consumer empowerment, customers expect a certain level of relationship with the companies with whom they engage – one that is personalized and delivers value. More than ever, they will abandon those who treat them like impersonal transactions. But the capability to create this data-driven flow of relationship-type conversations has also become more complex, driven by the multitude of channels through which customers engage and the number of technology platforms that Insurance providers use. Best-of-breed Marketing Automation Platforms, supported by CRMs, enable Insurance providers to leverage the data needed to have those conversations and establish relationships. Through automated programs and triggered communications, Insurance providers can nurture and grow relationships, while ensuring they are not missing any opportunities to engage with their customers. And the sophistication of these platforms ensure that every one of these touchpoints can be personalized and relevant to the end consumer. Insurance coverage is not one size fits all, so neither should any communications be.

‘A lot of times we hear; “we don’t have accurate or enough data in our CRM in order to personalize or power a use case that will drive impact. What can we do instead?” Our answer almost always is to begin a data strategy plan now that will carry you well into the future. Customer use cases and needs don’t go away, in fact they become more complex. The longer data projects and mining sit on the back burner, the further behind your organization becomes.”
– Jennifer Pugsley, VP, Customer Success at Goose Digital

The changes seen in economies across the globe left Insurance providers with two choices: pivot and embrace new technologies, or reject innovation and risk having to call it quits. While some may have felt that the role of digital channels and technologies would lessen as the world returned to a new normal, quite the opposite occurred. The improved efficiencies for both consumer and provider were quickly realized by those who embraced them and there is no desire to turn back. Even consumer segments who were more skeptical and digitally averse a few years ago, have been able to adapt and appreciate the benefits of having decision level tools more readily available. Going forward, digital technologies will become even more important as consumers will continue to demand and expect more in helping them through their path to purchase and be serviced within the Insurance industry. Companies who did not make the choice to embrace new digital technologies before put themselves even more at risk as they become less relevant and of lower appeal to their end consumer. And in a world where the consumer has so much power, the value of their loyalty has become even more important.

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