One of the greatest threats to any brand or category is the loss of relevance. Any number of forces can impede future growth, but it’s possible to clear these hurdles. The one strategy guaranteed to fail? A silent retreat into irrelevance. That is the driving force behind PIMA’s latest research, “Affinity 2030: Exploring Our Blind Spots for a Brighter Future.”
Companies have long used the affinity insurance model to drive steady growth. For the model to evolve, however, we must be vigilant in looking at our own relevance. To provide more insight into the affinity insurance market, we reached out to one of the “Affinity 2030” contributors: Andrew Kucheriavy, founder and CEO at Intechnic.
About Andrew Kucheriavy
Twenty years ago, Andrew Kucheriavy envisioned Intechnic as the solution to a problem. In his mind, companies focused too much on business objectives and not enough on user objectives. He realized that no matter how good a digital experience is, businesses only achieve their goals when customers reach theirs. That’s why Kucheriavy and his team at Intechnic use website design to improve customer experience in insurance.
Often referred to as a “UX Master,” Kucheriavy aims to simplify the customer-centric business transformation for financial services and insurance companies.
An Assessment of Today’s Affinity Insurance Market
As in many legacy industries, companies in the sponsored benefits market are sometimes slow to innovate and implement the latest trends — especially when it comes to customer experience trends in insurance. According to Kucheriavy, the move to a customer-centric business strategy is a transformational journey that requires a companywide mindset shift. With a growing number of technology companies entering the insurance space, traditional players must innovate or risk becoming obsolete.
In Kucheriavy’s opinion, many companies wind up misled because they ignore current trends and rely too heavily on past experiences that confirm their entrenched opinions. He believes the key to combating this problem is to replace guesswork, beliefs, and assumptions with research, data, and facts to get to the bottom of the insurance customer experience.
Another issue is the notion that people will show steadfast loyalty to a company just because they’ve been customers for years. While this may be the case for some customers, it’s unrealistic to have this mindset for everyone. We live in an experiential economy where customers will pay just as much for a good experience as they will for a solid product. In Kucheriavy’s opinion, the key to making a customer-centric business transformation is to stop competing on price and start competing on experience.
How to Improve Customer Experience in Insurance
Kucheriavy’s biggest suggestion for improving customer experience in insurance is to conduct a UX audit on your website. This practice can quickly and cost-effectively reveal any misalignments with users or gaps in your digital strategy that cost your business every day. It also allows you to see precisely how people interact with your brand, which can eliminate bias and guesswork.
After you’ve performed an audit, use the information to create a more customer-centric business model. Whether you apply these insights to a quick fix or a complete redesign, they provide reliable information to make more objective decisions and show stakeholders the importance of customer experience in the insurance industry.
Take your customer-centric business transformation a step further by properly documenting your customer personas and journeys. Record everything from customer demographics and psychographics to states of mind and pain points. To prevent biases from creeping in, Kucheriavy believes it’s helpful to have a third party conduct quantitative and qualitative research to ensure you have an accurate representation of your customers.
Above all, remember to put your focus on customer experience trends in insurance and apply them to your business. This will give your customers a reason to keep coming back.
PIMA® (Professional Insurance Marketing Association®) is a member-driven trade association focused exclusively on the group-sponsored benefits market.
The research from “Affinity 2030: Exploring Our Blind Spots for a Brighter Future” is available for no cost to PIMA members. For more information on becoming a member, click here.