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Customer Engagement

Customer Analytics: The Engine Behind Insurance Policyholder Engagement

By Michael Wilson, Director of Marketing, Insurance Industry Solutions, Pitney Bowes

Insurance is one of our most basic, day-to-day necessities. Ironically, it’s also one of our most confusing and complicated. Home insurance, auto insurance, health insurance, flood insurance, fire insurance, life insurance, even pet insurance! That’s just the tip of the iceberg. There is seemingly a different type of insurance policy for everything in our lives, underwritten by different providers, each with their own specific criteria for coverage, eligibility and costs. Everyone needs insurance, but what kind of policy? What should it cover? What should they reasonably pay for it?

Being able to effectively and quickly answer these questions for new customers can, and does, make the difference between a new sale and a lost prospect. Just as with any industry, the centrepiece for any insurer’s customer engagement programme is their level of understanding of their policyholders. If you truly know your customers, new and long-time policyholders alike, you can sort out their concerns and questions, give them the prompt and thorough responses they need and demonstrate that you truly care about their needs. But, how do you get to that level in the first place?

Gleaning Insights from Predictive Analytics

As you cultivate relationships with your customers, you inevitably build up a significant repository of data on them: not just their names and addresses, but their concerns, their areas of interest, their purchase history, what calls to action or ad campaigns that referred them to you in the first place. Applying predictive analytics to this body of data allows you to generate relevant and actionable insights into customer behavioural patterns, thought processes and insights that can be used to drive retention and customer lifetime value.

These insights are incomplete, though, if you don’t have an actionable single view of the customer across all of your systems. Far too often, different segments of customer data are siloed off from one another: customer profiles in one database, transaction history in another, onboarding forms in a third and so on. Applying a single, 360-degree view across all databases breaks down these siloes, ensuring that all of your customer data is integrated with each other, and it’s all going under the analytic microscope. Better, more comprehensive data means better, more comprehensive results – and those insights can be spun into the building blocks of new engagement strategies in segmentation, messaging and customer relationship development.

Don’t Be Somebody Else’s Cautionary Tale

Channels like interactive personalised video offer unique, innovative ways to communicate with your customers and stand out from the pack. But, if you’re relying on insights drawn from incomplete bodies of customer data to make these solutions work, your cutting-edge new tool can very easily backfire. There’s nothing more damaging to a brand than enticing customers with the promise of a new medium that takes their needs and concerns into account, but falls short on the execution because you’re proving to them that you really don’t know who they are or what they want.

With a single customer view, you can generate more accurate insights into your customers’ wants and needs. Those insights can then fuel the engine of your customer engagement and outreach efforts, allowing you to communicate more productively, innovatively and confidently with your policyholders – and avoid becoming the cautionary tale of the company that promised more than they could credibly back up.

Pitney Bowes software solutions enable insurance providers to manage risk, reduce costs, define coverage areas and personalise customer interactions through pristine data quality and structured management.

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