Individuals born between the years of 1980 and 1996, the Millennial generation, bring a unique set of values and expectations to the market that require an overhaul of your service standards.
The insurance industry is under pressure to remake itself in the face of the technological revolution, and today’s agents and brokers must somehow remain personally connected while maximizing remotely controlled relations. Millennials, or Generation Y, are a major source of prospective sales in both business and personal lines, and they are your future agency leaders. Applied Systems took a comprehensive look at what the next generation wants and expects and how your agency can meet those demands.
A defining characteristic of Millennials and those to follow is their digital savvy. Touchpad relationships and high-speed answers and actions are the norm, so waiting 24 hours for a response is worse than alien; it’s ludicrous. Working, communicating, purchasing, researching—all of these are subject to expectations of immediacy and accuracy, and coming up with a wrong answer or a slow response is a deal killer in most circumstances. They just don’t have time for you. But they do have time to squawk about your failure on social media.
They use social media, which by the way is more than just Facebook, to blurt out their instant opinions and experiences—both positive and negative—so first impressions matter. All this makes them a key factor in your marketing strategy.
They are largely happy to conduct business without meeting in person. The study found that, of Millennials who had car insurance, 60% used a remote purchasing method—35% bought online; 25% used the phone. Just 37% had a face-to-face purchase experience. If you don’t have a quality, aggressive online presence, you are missing out on a bulky consumer segment. Millennials also like to conduct account maintenance online, so having self-service software that gives clients instant access to insurance information and account actions at all hours of the day and night is crucial.
Interestingly, the concept of “trusted advisor” is still very important to Millennials, Applied found. That means an agency’s website and call center need to provide consumers confidence and congeniality. Has your webmaster even considered these two concepts? Your marketing strategy also needs to reflect those two principles—you’ve got to display competence as well as friendliness at every customer touch point.
Millennials turn heavily to friends and family for referrals and opinions, Applied Systems found, using text messaging and social media. Since this generation relies so heavily on friends and family, it might be time to up the status of your business referral plan in your marketing strategy—and measure the attempts and the results.
Your digital relationship with Millennials needs to be “consistent, convenient and personalized at every stage of their buying or service journey,” Applied says. It’s time to take a new look at marketing and service from the perspective of the next buying generation and see if your technology is keeping up with your current and prospective clients.
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