Our research shows that some insurers are leading the charge to become digital—these Digital Transformers provide a useful guide to what tomorrow’s leaders are doing today.

Accenture’s Digital Innovation Survey 2014, which is backed up by more research by our Strategy practice, shows that a small group of innovators is already emerging, defined primarily by their desire to lead and change the insurance industry. The good news is that these companies are generally large, so their planned digital investments are understandably larger than average—$56 million over the next three years as compared to the $43 million projected by other insurers. But what really sets them apart is their high expectations of the value to be created by their investments in digital.

These Digital Transformers are aiming to grow at double the rate of their less ambitious peers, using digital channels to expand their customer bases as a key lever. They are also aiming to improve profitability more aggressively than other insurers.

I think it’s worth understanding the characteristics of this group, to help craft one’s own digital strategy. The alternative is to play catchup with these Digital Transformers at a later date.

So what are this group’s characteristics?

  • They have a business strategy that covers the entire insurance value chain and addresses the challenges of the digital age.
  • They have or are working on a single view of the customer.
  • They have bought or plan to buy innovative companies or start-ups to acquire new digital capabilities, thus positioning themselves favorably in the digital world.
  • They believe establishing new partnerships is key to differentiation.
  • They are using digital technologies to provide personalized products and services, delighting customers and differentiating themselves from competitors.
  • They are three times more likely to engage with their target audiences on social media.
The difference between Digital Transformers and Digital Followers
View the image.

Learning from the leaders, I think, can be an extremely good way of reducing the strategy-development life cycle, and I hope this information will be useful. Next time, in my last blog of the year, I’ll take a look at the major developments that have changed our industry.

For more on these topics, please download:

Double the profits: How high-performance insurers can create business value from digital transformation

Digital Double-Down: How Far Will Leaders Leap Ahead?

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