With the business world, the need to develop omnichannel marketing and distribution strategies has been a dominant topic for the better part of this decade. Like many tech-driven concepts, omnichannel has been used with different meanings and applied to different areas. For that reason, it is important to define how we at Conning understand omnichannel, how it emerged, and why it is important for insurers.
The Conning Focus Series, “Insurer Omnichannel Marketing & Distribution” explores the integration of technology with distribution, identifying its impact on insurers, consumers, and distributors. We examine the different stages of omnichannel marketing and distribution for the life-annuity and property-casualty sectors and incorporate insights from a proprietary consumer survey on the needs and expectations of the insurance buyer.
- Key Findings
- Omni Overview
- Property-Casualty Omnichannel Overview
- Laying the Life-Annuity Omnichannel Foundation
- InsurTech from Apps to Emerging Tech
- Survey Results
- Conning Overview
Letter from Insurance Research
The integration of technology with distribution has been a significant story for property-casualty and life insurers for more than a decade. During that time, Conning has written multiple Strategic Studies and Commentary articles exploring that integration and identifying its impact on insurers, consumers, and distributors. This inaugural Conning Focus Series continues that exploration.
Customer expectations have changed when it comes to interacting with all retailers and service providers. Insurers are working to meet those expectations, developing robust websites, social media, and mobile applications. With the rise of these multiple platforms, providing an omnichannel customer experience (or CX) is becoming a key priority for successful companies. This raises the question: how are insurers doing in developing omnichannel marketing and distribution strategies?
What is omnichannel?
Like many tech-driven concepts, omnichannel has been used with different meanings and applied to different areas. For that reason, we begin by providing Conning’s definition of omnichannel and its distinctive hallmarks. Omnichannel strategies share these three components: multichannel distribution or marketing platform, the use of data mining and analytics, and an integrated CX.
The P&C omnichannel landscape: pointing the way
Property-casualty insurers have been expanding their distribution channel capabilities for the past two decades. Personal auto may well be pointing the way forward—particularly for homeowners and small commercial insurance.
The life-annuity omnichannel landscape: laying the foundation
Life-annuity insurers are struggling to reach new customers. These challenges are laying the foundation for an omnichannel approach to customer interaction by life-annuity insurers as both current and potential customers are being conditioned to expect a consistent CX regardless of the interaction.
InsurTech filling the omnichannel gaps
In 2019, it seems everyone knows how to use a smartphone. However, fully reaching mobile’s insurance potential still requires InsurTech solutions. A key challenge for insurers is identifying how best to integrate these InsurTech solutions into their business model.
What do consumers say?
With the growth of new technologies and the multiplatform world insurers are creating, we conducted a survey of homeowners, life-annuity, personal auto, and renter consumers in October 2019. The results provide insight into the biggest opportunities and challenges for insurers as they develop omnichannel marketing and distribution strategies.
Two industries on the omnichannel road
Where did our exploration of the current state of the development of omnichannel strategies by life-annuity and property-casualty insurers lead? Consumer expectations are driving insurers to expand channel capabilities and enhance the customer experience. The life-annuity and property-casualty sectors are both on the road to developing and delivering omnichannel strategies. We find, however, the two sectors are at different stages of development. As they work toward an omnichannel environment, insurers from both sectors will encounter internal challenges and structural obstacles.