The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded me that predicting the future is quite the fool’s errand. But as I optimistically-albeit cautiously-look at what 2021 may bring, it’s hard to miss some underlying customer experience trends shaking up customer communications in the insurance industry. Most trends point to one outcome–insurers must transform customer communications to genuinely connect, engage and respond to their customers to remain competitive. Check out the three top trends and what you can do about them.
Trust comes first
Over the past 18-months, the only thing we could be sure of is that there is very little certainty in what happens next. Businesses and consumers alike have a better understanding of their individual needs. Many consumers sought for insurers to provide more information about existing coverage, custom policies and other information to protect their family and business from the impact of an unforeseeable event, causing a shift in needs, preferences and behaviors. If they maintained or improved the quality of human-centric approach through 2020, insurers that proactively communicated with customers, establishing trust with policyholders pre-pandemic, will see substantial benefits from those efforts moving forward.
Customer experience has gone phygital
The blending of physical and digital customer experiences is happening at a whole new level. There’s even a new out-of-this-world-sounding word for it–phygital. Indeed, insurers have been searching for the right blend of human-centric engagements (with real people and teams), and digital channels such as email, SMS or others. The hard truth learned in the industry is there is no one size fits all–the right blend is the customer preference. Insurers that laid the groundwork to create a customer-centric culture and adopt experience-enhancing operations, partnerships, and technology investments will more easily rebound from last year. Not only will they be quick to bounce back, but they’ll also earn the lion's share of attention from unhappy policyholders looking to make a switch.
Insurance 3.0 is here
What is insurance 3.0? Well, let’s go back–insurance 1.0 is the traditional insurance likely bought in person. It was simple; it was easy. Insurance 2.0 brought digital insurance and customer centricity. Now, established by pandemic-spurred changes, the new “insurance 3.0” is here. It brings the insurance industry a mandate to adopt customer-centric business models–one where the culture, technology and operations integrate for customer communications and experiences that are responsive, customer-obsessed and flexible to their changing needs and behaviors. Many insurers are largely operating as insurance 2.0. The 2021 reality is that anyone still mulling over how or when to bring CX to the core of their business risks significant reputational damage.
Customer experience is the new goal of customer communications
Whatever stage your organisation is in of adapting to consumer trends, one thing is certain: adapt or risk being left behind. The good news is that at the core of delivering an exceptional customer experience lies customer communications. Every single communication is an opportunity to provide valuable, timely, personalise and relevant information to help your organisation build trusting relationships and stand out amidst the noise.
At Quadient, we believe connections matter. Want to learn more? Visit Inspire Evolve for a wealth of CCM and CX resources.