The next decade will see a fundamental reorientation of the insurance business. The traditional focus on products, policies and paying claims will shift to services, experiences and creating value. Put another way, what customers want and need, not what insurers want to sell or have always sold, will be the dominant driver of innovation and growth.
How insurers engage customers and the channels they use for distribution and service will change just as dramatically. In many cases, the “face” or “front door” of insurance will be distribution partners, including banks, manufacturers, health care providers and other high-profile brands outside the industry.
Today, more insurance leaders are recognizing how customer insights drive improvements in products, services and experiences. In that sense, changing consumer needs and expectations are both an invitation for insurers to innovate and a blueprint for their transformation programs.
To satisfy those rising consumer demands, engage with new customers and retain existing ones, insurers will have to overcome their reputation for delivering subpar experiences and emphasizing standardized policies and traditional channels over customer needs and preferences.
Our latest report, NextWave Insurance: Consumers & Small Businesses (pdf), focuses on nine key customer types that will define the market on the road to 2030. These customer categories frame both the formidable challenges and unique opportunities insurers face in a highly dynamic market. Of course, not every insurer will focus on all nine of these groups. But there are common themes across them, including the need for tailored coverage, personalized service and richer digital experiences – all of which add up to increased value. The nine groups are: