Too many insurance ads on social media? Blame analytics firms

If you have been hit by a wave of insurance advertisements on social media profile page, you could blame analytics firms. For the past four to six months, data analytics firms are on an overdrive to identity ‘potential’ policyholders and help insurers initiate contact with the right users. Life insurers want healthy customers and the idea is to identify such users using mining techniques.

Using certain keywords like ‘fitness’, ‘exercise’, ‘quit smoking’ and ‘diet’ as well as those related to eating healthy food. Individuals below 35 years of age are shortlisted. If it is an open profile, details related to the individual’s lifestyle is looked at. Out of a pool, a few thousand profiles could be chosen which would then be shortlisted to be presented to the insurance company.

Insurance company then engage their internal teams to sift through these leads using their own underwriting criteria. For instance, one insurance company would only be looking to capture a customer segment between a certain age group or in specific locations. Once this data is sifted, customer start getting relevant ads.

If a customer clicks on an ad and ends up buying a product, the analytics firm will be paid a fixed commission for lead generation.

Insurance is still a push product in a majority of the Indian market. While insurance companies have in the past looked at steps like selling insurance through shopping channels as well as malls, customer response to these initiatives have been poor.

Despite steps taken by the industry to create awareness on the products, customers either buy products for saving tax or end up buying irrelevant products for their risk appetite. Through the usage of analytics, insurance company not only want to reach out to the right target segment, but also suggest appropriate products for them.

This is the first time that an insurance company is taking external assistance to do a deep-dive into customer profiles. While customers have an option to not click on the advertisement, the data that is being collected could help insurers create more customer-friendly policies.

At a time when a large proportion of the country does not have any insurance cover and those having access to insurance do not have adequate size of covers, it is imperative that insurers are able to find a relevant solution to the policyholder’s exact needs in their current life-stage. This will only boost sales, but also improve insurance penetration.

Depending on how successful it is, this could be extended to other forms of insurance like health insurance as well.

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