According to Market Insight Adaptability consumers are expecting the insurance industry to provide real-time service using technologies such as click to chat or click to call features while using smartphones and tablets.
The days of customers having only the options of meeting face to face with producers or using the telephone, fax or email to interact are quickly fading. The first phase of business began with insurance owners using the phone book, newspapers and participation in community associations.
Now it is through a digital presence and according to research, the insurance firms are constantly challenged by determination how to assure that clients can find the agency/broker on the internet and utilize the information they display to their benefit.
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Online digital communication is the new normal. Studies have shown that to compete successfully in the insurance industry, insurance firms need to acquire social media, digital brand marketing and content management skills to keep customers engaged. According to market research, technology advances are ratcheting up customer expectations of immediacy, ease of use and accessibility of people and information, regardless of the time of day.
Market Insight Group believes that within four years, clients will expect to start and complete the entire policy acquisition process on their smart devices (even if there is a F2F meeting at the same time), request and consume services using video connections on their smart devices, and complete these tasks and others within one or more apps.
Ernest & Young’s recent global digital survey found that insurance companies that could differentiate their customer service experience through a carefully designed digital strategy are more successful than their competitors at reducing customer service cost while increasing customer satisfaction and retention.
Digital innovation in the life insurance and annuity industry offers:
- Electronic signatures; a more expedient policy purchase and claims payout. Regulators have established rules that facilitate acceptance of e-signatures. Digital signing saves time and cost in postage. Digital signing provides a trail for fraud protection.
- Digital life insurance applications offer clear and concise information where specific categories must be completed or errors will occur if kept blank. So the application process is more complete.
- Online bill payment options
- Death claims experience is a more positive experience and can be done online and grieving family does not have to talk with anyone during the process
Brokers that offer quotes from more than one insurance company generally have a proprietary quote engine. Insurance companies provide product information, underwriting guidelines and rates. At Life Quotes, Inc, this information is put into a database and then with a series of health and life style questions added to generate the premium based upon what they have from the insurance company as well as what the customer tells about his or her self. Roughly 18 unique questions can determine someone’s price and some are broken down even further if the first reply to some of the questions is yes.
Here is the initial list of questions:
State, DOB,Sex, Height/Weight, Tobacco Use, Disability, Piloting, Driving History, Bankruptcy, Scuba Diving, Hazardous Activities, Family History, Blood Pressure, BP Meds, Cholesterol, Cholesterol Meds, 37 Health Questions, Purchase Policy in Last 60 Months
Once all that information has been gathered, a quote engine provides the best possible price based on that provided criteria. Some brokers – such as Life Quotes – work with 30+ life insurance companies to determine eligibility and cost.