3 minute read 10 May 2019
Young people crossing street

How digital marketing helps insurers connect with new customers

By

Avril Castagnetta

EY Americas Insurance Marketing Transformation Leader

Experienced financial services professional. Digital marketing enthusiast.

3 minute read 10 May 2019

A new wave of powerful digital marketing tools enables insurers to create a more digital-friendly business for customers.

The digital revolution has dramatically changed consumer behavior in the past decade. Consumers today rely on online channels to research and buy an expanding array of products and services, often having little to no live contact with a company or its representatives throughout the entire purchase journey. In response, companies have had to work hard to ensure their offerings suit a digital world so they do not get frozen out by more digitally savvy competitors.

Insurers are no exception. They have invested considerable time and energy in developing new digital value propositions and products.

Now, insurers need to take the next steps to make those investments in digital pay off in the form of new customers:

  • Execute the right digital marketing initiatives to identify and learn more about the right prospects.
  • Progressively engage with them across devices and digital properties as they move along the purchase path.

Digital marketing tools

A new wave of powerful digital marketing tools have changed the game when it comes to identifying, reaching and interacting with prospects and customers. For insurers, they represent the next step in creating a more digital-friendly business that is in tune with how consumers live, interact with each other, and engage with product and service providers.

In the past several years, companies have made dramatic advancements in the sophistication and capabilities of their digital marketing tools. These new tools (see Figure 1) have fundamentally changed how marketers can prospect and what they can learn about specific individuals they are targeting. They enable marketers to not only find people with a high likelihood of buying specific products, but more importantly, create a level of intimacy with anonymous visitors through personalized experiences so they can convert them into hot leads and, ultimately, new customers.

New tools transformed digital marketing

Shifting to digital marketing: two key organizational focus areas

Implementing and using these tools isn’t a simple matter of plug and play. While the tools themselves are user-friendly, to get the most out of them, insurers will likely find that they will need to make significant changes to how they execute digital marketing broadly and how marketing interacts with the sales organization.

1. The entire marketing organization will need to become much more agile.

Insurers are responding to consumers’ changing behaviors and needs by rapidly developing and introducing new products. However, the marketing organization often struggles to keep up because it is bogged down by systemic complexity that has built up over time. Marketing not only needs to evolve its operations to work within the agile product development life cycle, it also needs to change how it executes. In short, the marketing organization has to become much more agile itself.

2. Marketing needs to forge stronger connections with the sales organization.

The marketing and sales organizations effectively have the same ultimate goal – to generate more customers and revenue for their company. Thus, they should be tightly integrated throughout the customer journey. Specifically, marketing should work closely with the sales team up front to find buyers and determine the best ways to initiate contact based on the strengths of the relationships. It should also equip the sales team with the insights, gleaned from progressive engagement with potential buyers, on what is important to those buyers.

Digital Marketing Effectiveness

Summary

Harnessing the combined power of digital channels and new digital marketing tools can have a powerful effect on how insurers build and sustain customer relationships.

The insurance industry spends billions on marketing and distribution. Now insurers need to embrace the digital marketing revolution to begin generating a far greater return on that investment.

About this article

By

Avril Castagnetta

EY Americas Insurance Marketing Transformation Leader

Experienced financial services professional. Digital marketing enthusiast.