Given the unprecedented nature of the technological and cultural forces sweeping across the marketplace, the next generation of insurance-buying will inevitably look different from the models used by baby boomers in the past.
Millennials are looking for insurers who can understand and support the nontraditional ways they are living, buying and working. And since these habits and preferences are still evolving quickly over time, the only way that insurance agents and companies can keep up and speak in a language that millennials understand is to first reach out, listen and begin the conversation.
Fuel Cycle, a customer insights and market research platform that helps brands like AIG gather real-time customer insights, suggests a few steps that insurance agents and companies can take to motivate millennials:
1. Engage millennials sooner rather than later.
Insurance agents shouldn’t underestimate the importance of engaging millennials as early as possible, even if those efforts won’t provide significant returns in the near-term.
Renter’s insurance may be a relatively small revenue opportunity, for example, but it can also be a highly cost-effective way to recruit potential customers for higher-margin products down the line.
Although teenagers and twenty-somethings may be notoriously averse to parental advice, when it finally comes time to purchase a coverage plan, millennials are disproportionately buying from the same insurer as their parents, according to Fuel Cycle. This creates an opportunity for companies who have pre-existing relationships with family members, as long as they act sooner rather than later, tapping into those valuable connections before a competitor can enter the picture.
2. Prioritize direct channels.
In order to win over millennials, insurance companies will inevitably have to invest in several nontraditional areas like customer intelligence, as the process of buying insurance shifts onto new screens, channels and platforms over the next decade.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that agents will be irrelevant; in fact, insurers should think about strategic ways to strengthen and repurpose their human capital, turning agents or field reps into higher-level consultants who can provide new kinds of value to the end-customer.
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