Have you ever sat and paid attention to how many TV commercials are from insurance companies? If so, then you all so noticed how many of them are encouraging you to switch coverage from your current carrier to their company, right? The reason is simple- insurance companies are like any other business, they need continued growth in the market share. However, the customers that they are able to retain ultimately have a much larger impact on the bottom line, because – as a rule, it takes four time more effort/money to attract new customers than to retain existing ones. Back before everyone had the ability to go to their desktop or mobile device (you know, before the digital age) for a quick insurance quote, Insurance agents and their teams were the “gatekeepers.” They had the ability to earn trust and maintain personal relationships with their clients. Today, busy Americans with too much to do and too little time, and those under 30 differ with insurance as we knew it in some key aspects. While they still are looking for advice and guidance, they also want searching for insurance to be as seamless as going to the grocery store. This group will search for and communicate whenever, wherever, and however they want. So, how can insurance companies keep and hopefully expand their diverse sets of customers, old and young alike? What factors drive retention and loyalty? I recommend these tips:
- Know your clients better: Insurers need to know and better understand their customers' values and behavior patterns, not only as target groups, but as individuals. They need to use social media analyticsand conversations via social networks to increase touch points with their customers. They can use the knowledge gained to sustain intermittent conversations about things that are helpful and relevant to customers.
- Experience matches expectation: Simply put - what you put out in the world, what you say you’re going to do, you actually do it.
- Pick up the phone: If you want loyal customers, have human beings pick up the phone. How many times have you, yourself, been frustrated when trying to get help with something only to have to go through a series of phone prompts or be pushed to a voicemail?
- Shared values: Try to connect with your customers on shared values. Attempt to connect with them on your belief structure, on who you are as a person, on the morality, on your humanity. This could mean the charities that you support.
- Ask your customers what they want and then do it: Maybe this one seems intuitive, but it bears mentioning and honestly, it is usually overlooked.