Peter M.J. Gross

Peter M.J. Gross

February 11, 2022

Looking Ahead: High Expectations, Low Margins for Error

The insurance industry remains in a state of transformation — it’s possible that recovering from the global pandemic was more disruptive to business processes than the pandemic itself. 

Customers continue to raise their expectations for insurers and digital experiences, which makes it important to stay competitive by improving product offerings. At the same time, these customers have changed their behavior in ways that make expectations more challenging to meet.

The good news is that insurers have never had more powerful tools available for improving client service and reducing their own operational burdens. Vast data sets can offer alternatives to credit-based insurance scoring models and provide customer 360 profiles with greater speed and flexibility than ever before.

One such tool is the BusinessCore database from AnalyticsIQ. Demyst interviewed Curtis Marshall, SVP of Business Data at AnalyticsIQ, to discuss the expectations of insurance customers and ways that insurers can meet them.

What follows is a transcript of the interview. 

Demyst: Please give us an overview of your role as at AnalyticsIQ

Curtis Marshall: At AnalyticsIQ, I am the SVP of Business Data where I lead the strategy for our B2B data, BusinessCore, our B2B2C linkage solution, and insurance partnerships. BusinessCore is a one-of-a-kind database that provides insight into the hearts and minds of the individuals making decisions for their organizations. Our team has also developed a strong, proprietary B2B2C linkage that links an individual’s consumer profile at home to their professional profile at work, giving organizations a true 360-degree view of an individual – regardless of whether they are at home or at work.

What data is available from AnalyticsIQ?

AnalyticsIQ offers comprehensive consumer and B2B data known as PeopleCore and BusinessCore respectively.

PeopleCore, our proprietary consumer database, provides thousands of attributes ranging from foundational demographics and lifestyle interests to purchase predictors and psychological motivations on over 251 million individuals and 122 million households. Our data provides marketers and data scientists with a deep understanding into who people are, what people do, and - most importantly – why they make the decisions they make.

BusinessCore offers traditional firmographic data on over 23 million businesses and attributes on nearly 102 million professionals that you can’t get anywhere else such as employee decision making or influence status or marketing content preferences. This facilitates personalization in B2B marketing typically reserved for B2C brands.

What are some of the data points that insurers can use to gain insight into their customers’ needs?

Often in insurance, one of the best opportunities to acquire new customers or additional business from existing clients is after a life event like having children, buying a home or car, starting a business, or getting married. But without an invitation to your client’s wedding, it can be difficult to get the timing right without the right data. Having data that can provide insight into the individual experience in such areas is a must.

However, with so much competition, simply reaching out at the right time may not be enough. Insurers need to know their customers on a deeper level. Are they value seekers looking for a deal or are they conscious shoppers that want the best coverage? Are they a business decision maker who is more likely to answer your email rather than your LinkedIn invite? Today, insurance companies can better connect with their customers and clients by understanding their lifestyle and decision drivers.

Have you been seeing noteworthy changes in the way insurers approach customer acquisition? 

Although insurance may be thought of as a traditional industry, many insurers are allocating more dollars than ever to the digital ecosystem for custom acquisition – from advertising on social media or advanced TV to the customer experience and ability to acquire policies and quotes in real-time online. We’ve even seen the emergence of platform-based, insuretech solutions offering streamlined click, quote, bind processes for individuals and businesses, so coverage is nearly immediate. Insurance companies must lean into these changes to not only fend off competition but also reap the rewards presented by emerging opportunities.

How have customer expectations for insurers changed in the past few years?

Customers today expect a simple, streamlined experience that allows them to get an immediate, bindable quote personalized to their life. Consumers and businesses that are shopping for insurance want coverage based on their situation sooner than later. Insurers must have the technologies and processes – along with data to back them up – in place to make it as easy as possible for a prospect to become a customer.

Which technologies can insurers apply to improve the customer experience?

In order to answer the call of the simplified digital experience that consumers and businesses expect today, insurers must have comprehensive, individual-level data and the ability to extract actionable observations. By boosting what they know about applicants or understanding their best policy holders, insurers can personalize recommendations and expediate the underwriting process while not giving up insights into liability.

This type of data can also enhance an insurer’s understanding of their current in-force policies to identify other lines of business and other opportunities they would have not otherwise known existed.

What capabilities will determine success for insurers in the year ahead?

Going into 2022 and beyond, the most successful insurers will be those that embrace innovation and become data-driven beyond their first-party data in order to gain that 360-degree picture of their policy holders and prospects. With a B2B2C view and predictive insights, insurers can uncover new opportunities, all while minimizing risk by ensuring they are writing the right policies and more.

Curtis, thank you for your time. 

For an expanded look at the changes coming to external data in the year ahead, download Demyst's External Data Predictions Report for 2022.

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