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Insurers Focus On Attracting And Retaining Customers

(Posted by Guest Blogger, Ian Turvill.)

An article in today's Insurance Networking News focuses on the outcomes of a conference this week that has been exploring "approaches to attracting and retaining customers in various market segments". There were several points raised in the article that made me think about the value of applying Enterprise Decision Management to address this business challenge.


"Panelists at the conference noted that insurance marketing programs must appeal to three distinct generational groups: Generation Y (ages 18-29), Generation X (ages 30-40) and baby boomers (ages 41-59). Each group has distinct demands for service; therefore, insurers must offer different Web-based services that address their consumers' varying levels of comfort with technology."

This sounds distinctly like a problem that EDM is able to solve. By controlling processes through centralized rules and analytics , and then controlling customer interactions through customer-facing operational systems, EDM allows organizations to readily treat their consumers in a segmented manner.


"Consumers are more comfortable with technology than ever before, but if potential customers on your Web site can't get a quote in seven to eight minutes, if it's too complicated or there are too many fields to fill out, they're going to bail. We need to make sure we have the internal talent or a third-party supplier that can continually streamline those processes," said Lori Lehmann, director of Legal Initiatives at Columbus, Ohio-based Nationwide Insurance Co

EDM can provide the ability to make decisions "on-the-fly" by adapting the questions that are presented to customers based on the responses given earlier. Where GEICO did this using Enterprise Decision Management, they were able to reduce the number of people dropping out of the online quotation process from 9 out of 10 to just 4 out of 10. In other words, six times more consumers were getting quotes from GEICO!


"As an industry we need to take a lesson from the fast-food restaurants by adopting more of a pilot approach," says Andrew MacDonald, vice president and CIO at The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc., Hartford, Conn. "Before a fast-food restaurant rolls out a new product, it is tested in at least one market to determine customer acceptance. To enable this, it is very important to have flexibility in our systems so we can quickly and easily pilot new products."

Yep, good idea. But what about going one step further. The predictive analytics that EDM offers through "Pre-Market Offer Testing" allow insurers to test many different new value propositions and get robust data even before they take it the test market phase. The outcome is even faster "speed-to-market" and much broader sense of consumer preferences and behaviors. See my recent article in Fair Isaac's ViewPoints online magazine to see how this can be achieved.

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