Darci Darnell: Customer Centricity in Insurance

Today's customers are increasingly seeking out more attentive insurance companies. To remain competitive, many insurers are looking to become customer focused. Darci Darnell, a partner with Bain's Financial Services practice, shares three ways that insurers can accelerate their journey on the path to better customer advocacy.

Read the Bain Report: Customer Behavior and Loyalty in Insurance—Global Edition 2016

Read the transcript below.

DARCI DARNELL: Insurers have a long history of being very internally focused and focused on their own products, on their traditional channel—the agency—and on end-year financial results. Most insurers now are going through a transformation where they're trying to be more customer-focused. When we did our research this year of thousands of customers globally in insurance, we learned three different ways that insurers can accelerate that transition.

Number one, insurers generally think of insurance as a low-contact category. They don't have many opportunities to reach out and touch customers. But in fact, customers want to be educated, informed, and supported by their insurers. So looking for ways to add value, to reach out to customers, and to touch them is going to help drive customer advocacy.

Number two, insurers are way behind other financial institutions like banks in really leveraging the mobile channel. Customers want interactions that are simple, that are digital, and that are intuitive and most importantly, convenient to when they need them. Insurers really need to invest behind their mobile applications.

Lastly and third, customers want to buy more from their insurers. They're not looking for a reason to attrite, even though cheaper insurance is often just a few clicks away. They would love to consolidate their insurance needs with the single insurer and look for ways to do more with the companies they work for. So insurers should really focus in on creating the opportunities to sell more to their customers.

There are simple salesforce effectiveness ways of doing that. And then there are advanced predictive analytics that can tell insurers when the right moment is to sell something to their current customers. If insurers focus on those three things—again, increasing share of wallet, investing in the digital channel and looking for ways to engage their customers—they'll be well on the path to customer advocacy.

Read the Bain Report: Customer Behavior and Loyalty in Insurance—Global Edition 2016