ONE: Be sure your business is customer-centric

Below are highlighted reasons why you need a customer-centric strategy………….. Did you know that, maintaining good relationships with an insurance customer is like raising a baby. Their behavior changes rapidly. You simply cannot ignore their needs, and the way you deal with them affects the health of the entire family – or in the case of your business – the health of its bottom line.

Your interactions with customers are critical to meeting your business objectives. Regardless of whether your strategy focuses on distribution and customer service, operational excellence or
product optimization, your customers need to be in focus.

ONE …. Create a platform for engagement that fuels dialog with your customers.

Don’t be a stranger If your company is like most insurance companies, you do not have many points of contact with your customers. In fact, you may only engage in dialog in a claims situation or in connection with annual or renewal payments – and those interactions do not relate to the needs of the customer. So, if you are communicating with your customer infrequently (and often in situations the customer perceives as negative), how can you anticipate their needs and keep them satisfied?

The answer is to engage in a much more frequent and relevant dialog with your customers in order to learn their needs and respond promptly. That is all very well and fine, you say, but how do I increase the number of opportunities to engage in dialog? Two critical factors for engagement. There are two key actions you can take to create contact points and engage with your customers:
customer milestones and incentives.  A prerequisite to these two actions is accurate and accessible customer data. Customer data is used to identify milestones, trigger an action and offer the customer an incentive for engaging in dialog.

1. Milestones

If you have the right customer data in your system, you can identify critical points in the customer lifecycle. These are milestones where a need may present itself – a need that can be answered in
the way of information, advice, and ultimately, a concrete offer. Examples of these critical points are when the customer moves away from his or her childhood home, gets a driving license, moves or travels abroad for a longer period, marries or moves in with a partner, has children, gets divorced or loses a spouse. Each of these milestones represents an opportunity to engage. A similar lifecycle approach can be applied to commercial customers by identifying company milestones that trigger different insurance needs and advice.

2. Incentives
The dialog you initiate must offer the customer a clear benefit. Otherwise, you can attempt to engage all you want, but you won’t get a response. On the simplest level, this benefit could be nothing
more than advice. It will, however, only be perceived as a benefit if the customers feel that they are getting impartial advice. Naturally, they are aware that the person they are talking to represents an insurance company and, at the end of the day, wants to sell them something. Nevertheless, the tone of the conversation can be crucial. If your people recognize that this is an early point in the sales cycle, and the customer feels that they are getting help rather than being sold to, it could make a big difference in the ultimate outcome.

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