How Important is “The Future” to Your Insurance Business?
Planning for the future but managing for today is a challenge businesses must address. Focusing on the tomorrow and today in the lens of product and consumers is one aspect, but increasingly companies are including marketing in that same perspective. The Insurance Industry has arguably been struggling with dealing with the ‘hear and now’ and ‘future ready’ more than others.
For an industry whose very purpose is to focus on the future, with clients who are forward thinking how can Insurance providers find that right balance? Day to day management requires remaining practical and grounded in the here and now, while growth requires ensuring products and services are being marketed through channels that address both current and future customers.
So, what do these conflicting principles prevalent through the industry mean for your business?
Learning from the Auto Industry
The Insurance Industry can benefit from looking at other verticals who have dealt with the same challenges, like the Auto Industry. Shifts in the vehicle economy – from product, to target markets through to marketing all shed light on how car manufacturers through to dealerships have been managing on the need for innovation and fluidity.
Consider the Technological shifts in the auto space and how these have impact the product and the end consumer:
- Electric vehicles
- Autonomous cars
Really, the above list just scratches the surface as there are several more mega-trends in the auto space. Embracing them has created a substantial risk and opportunity for those companies who took on the challenge, including how they managed changed experiences and expectations with their clients.
The auto industry is a microcosm of shifting trends throughout other industries – including Insurance. Yet it highlights the need to calibrate your business to these disruptions. It’s not always easy to do but embracing innovation is integral to long-term sustainability and growth.
Balancing Wide-Sweeping Innovations With Digital Marketing Trends
As products and services, and target audiences shift, so must a company’s marketing also evolve. Add on the growth of channels, particularly in the digital space, and both the challenges and opportunities increase.
When we talk about today’s digital marketing trends, it’s primarily about:
- Paid advertising
- Social Media
- Email Marketing
- Organic Traffic (Brand Awareness)
Really, managing these near-term issues while keeping one eye on the future comes down to operating on two concurrent time horizons.
For instance, one of our insurance clients has a team working with predictive analytics models focused on near-term goals. This tactic keeps the brokerage concentrated on targeted, more profitable marketing for today..
Obviously, as a business you need to manage what is happening day-t- day and live in the moment. You can only sacrifice so much of the here and now for the years ahead. But businesses that don’t plan for the future will be limited. One way to plan for tomorrow’s unknowns is to develop research-based initiatives, which is what occurred in the auto industry. After all, leaping into the future with your eyes closed will likely have disastrous consequences.
Still, you need to actively make an effort to be forward-thinking because time moves quickly. Without planning for the future, you run the risk of going from cutting edge to chasing the pack.
Managing the Delicate Balance
So, no, you can’t try and operate only for today, nor only focus on the future.
Already we know that for Insurance providers to succeed, there must be a balance. And often that imbalance is evidenced within their marketing.
Now, you’re obviously an insurance provider first, and you may have some aspects of digital marketing associated with your role. Regardless, here are are compelling stats of which any Insurance leader must be aware:
- Almost 70% of insurance consumers performed an online search before choosing coverage
- Nearly 70% of insurance consumers did not have a company in mind before searching.
The figures make it clear: The market dictates that Insurance providers of all shapes and sizes must be involved in the digital marketing space if they intend to grow.
But for companies who are newer to digital, it has become progressively more difficult to evolve from local (and likely more traditional) advertising to full-on online advertising.
SEO specific to local markets generates results for an abundance of reasons, one of them being Google reviews, another being “Near me” searches.
When Insurance providers realize they are no longer limited to growth just within their local markets they also need to understand that they may be moving from being a big fish in a small pond to a droplet in the ocean. There is a lot of opportunity to swim in the bigger body of water, but it’s more complicated and requires a digital strategy which is often a challenge for Insurance providers.
Digital Marketing: Opportunities for Today and Tomorrow
On one hand, insurance brokers must be pragmatic, and focus on the here and now. The industry is rooted in this careful sort of thinking, because Insurance is about mitigating risk.
That said, Insurance providers and their clients are also thinking about the future. In fact, that’s likely what they’re thinking about more than anything else.
So, as much as your business is focussed on practicality and the here and now, there’s a need to think about the future. And that includes products, consumer needs and marketing strategies that will ensure you are able to continue to manage risk and grow.
The challenge is dividing these timeliness efficiently and profitably for products, consumers and your digital marketing.
Getting the Right Help
At Goose Digital, we help our clients build digital marketing plans that enable them to engage with today’s prospect and customer and grow for the future. Our deep knowledge of the Insurance industry, coupled with years of expertise across all digital channels has enabled us to guide and support Insurance providers to grow and succeed in an ever changing environment.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you bring your business into the future.