Other parts of this series:
In my recent blogs I pointed out that most insurance customers want their providers to offer them personalized services. I also highlighted the willingness of these customers to share information with their insurers if it helped them get better service.
And indeed, several leading insurers have been quick to deploy digital technologies to deliver personalized services to their customers.
The United Services Automobile Association (USAA) in the U.S. and Hiscox in France are among the front-runners; they’ve both launched innovative customer-centric solutions. USAA’s Auto Circle service provides customers with assistance through all the stages of a vehicle purchase – selection, financing and insurance. It also advises them about the maintenance and the eventual sale of the vehicle. Its close association with its customers enables USAA to gain greater insight into consumer behavior and strengthens its bonds with its highly-defined target market: members of the armed forces.
Similarly, Hiscox is cultivating closer ties with its customers in France by providing small businesses with a web service that allows them to assess their own insurance risk and buy appropriate cover.
Both of these insurers achieve fantastic returns on their personalization culture and investments.
The message seems clear. Insurance customers are craving personalized services and are eager to help their providers so they can get them. Insurers who provide a really personalized customer experience achieve superior customer satisfaction, higher retention and more profitable revenue growth
So why are large numbers of insurers slow off the mark? Recent Accenture research across 40 countries found that only 22 percent of carriers have launched a tailored service that, for example, allows customers to identity and manage their risks. Furthermore, 21 percent of customers say their insurers provide no personalized service of any kind. This is worrying.
There are two possible reasons for this reluctance.
Firstly, insurers may be prioritizing their innovation initiatives and personalization isn’t at the top of the list. Process efficiency through digitization and digital enablement of distribution often come first. And often rightly so.
Some carriers, therefore, might be putting personalization on the backburner while they attend to more urgent opportunities and demands. With digital technology driving most of these innovations, personalization could feature more strongly among these insurers in the near future. Half the innovations we tracked in our global research have a systemic impact on insurers’ value chains. Once carriers have put these changes in place they are likely to quickly introduce complementary innovations such as personalization.
The second possibility, of course, is that some insurers are slow to realize the importance of personalization. These carriers need to move fast. Customers definitely want more tailored services. If their insurer can’t give them what they want, they’re likely to switch.
In my next blog I’ll discuss how some insurers are employing personalization to deliver services beyond traditional insurance.
For further information on the power of personalized insurance services read: