AdWatch — the customer strikes back

September 17, 2019 Lucy Minton

It’s alright — I promise the entirety of this blog won’t consist of bad Star Wars puns and irreverent humour. Insurance is a serious business after all.

Insurance adverts on tv

Something struck me recently whilst channel surfing the TV one evening. Adverts from insurers and brokers are becoming more straightforward and overt, addressing the needs of their customers. This, for me anyway, has been a really exciting development as I’m a bit of an ad geek and is a far cry from the product led, risk heavy former approaches that seemed to be the norm. This realisation led me to undertake a bit of mission in reviewing the current print and digital insurance messages that are being projected to the general public.

Aggregators no longer singularly dominate our screens with strong brand messages and new customer offers. We’re starting to see everyday insurance gripes being tackled head on; from dual pricing being shown the door to customers being reassured they no longer need to go through pages of convoluted questions for a simple quote. These topics which have historically been somewhat skirted around (and for good reason, as they can be hard to solve or even address) are being dragged into the spotlight — and consumers are being offered actual solutions.

As my learned colleagues have previously mentioned, this simplification of processes and acceptance of new versus current customer imbalance is something being begged for by the market. Though behind the scenes there is much work that needs to be undertaken to create the ability to offer the above, now is the time to strike to gain the lion’s share of customer loyalty and have your brand associated with proactive change.

Shoppers are becoming more and more discerning, with the regularly used formula of ‘fear or humour’ now outdated and ineffective. Easy access to information and an ever-present thirst for simplicity has led to a new wave of public understanding of an industry before closed off to scrutiny to all but governing bodies. Insurance ads are no longer devoid of information, simply relying on emotive context to force action.

Yes I admit, this level of awareness is still tempered with lethargy of actually switching — but don’t let the brief period of relative calm lull you into a false sense of security. An event horizon is fast approaching where change will become easy and loyalty scarce, quote journeys will consist of no more than 5 questions and everything can be done on an app.

So, my advice as an insurance consumer who has ties to the industry? And I know you’re waiting with bated breath to hear it…

…There IS a new hope.* Sorry, it had to be done.

The goal here is for this currently radical approach to stop being new and exciting. We know the pace of change in the insurance and technology industry is at slowest, a sprint — so solutions need to keep up with expectation.

Keep in mind that we (the buying public) are increasingly aware of what we are and aren’t ‘entitled’ to. I know if I set aside 30 minutes when it comes to renewal time, I’ll be able to find a better deal as a new customer elsewhere… but I don’t WANT to move. I’ve heard the phrase ‘dual pricing’ on the news so I have a good idea what it is and I’m sufficiently irked by it. However, time is gold and I don’t have much of it, but why does it always lead to insurance becoming grudge purchase?

Please insurers, keep producing adverts that leave me with the urge to switch to you. Give me information, don’t scare me into taking out cover. Offer simplicity over flashy initial reward. Get yourself geared up with a digital solution that enables you to be flexible and responsive. Start now and take the plunge in associating your name and aligning your brand with customer needs over technology trend. I guarantee this will stand you in good stead for the change ahead.

*Yes, this is a Star Wars reference.

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