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Below is our recent interview with Dustin Yoder, CEO at Sureify:
Q: Tell us about the early days of Sureify. What were the biggest challenges?
A: One of the biggest challenges of entering a nascent market is educating the market, buyers, consumers and partners on execution. We’ve found that finding pain and communicating value is fairly straightforward. However, the use of technology to bridge the experience between life insurance companies and their customers is new and, as with anything new, change is often hard. So, we have to take the approach of not just providing a tool, but providing a solution, value, and hands-on education to help both consumers and carriers adopt new technology and reap the benefits of a digital experience.
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Q: How is insurance different today than it was just a few years ago?
A: The biggest change in insurance today is the relationship between carriers and their policyholders. Traditionally, the insurance carrier’s customer was the agent or broker, but carriers are realizing that they need a direct relationship with their policyholders. This changing dynamic is also affecting how insurance is being sold and managed. Policyholders no longer accept a paper-based experience and a long purchase process. Consumers today expect to have the same experience with their life insurer as they do when shopping on Amazon, using Uber, or even buying a pizza.
Q: What is the great thing about an omnichannnel experience?
A: From a consumer’s perspective, the single best thing about an omnichannel experience is it puts the customer first. It allows the consumer to buy a product at any time through any channel, on the go or at home. It allows them to purchase insurance the way they want to and delivers a more personal, enjoyable experience. From a carrier’s perspective, omnichannel enables life insurers to create new sales channels that reduce acquisition costs, improve placement, and increase revenue.
Q: How life insurers can profitably engage consumers?
A: Early results demonstrate that carriers that digitally engage with their policyholders are more likely to increase placement, persistency, and upsell/cross-sell rates. Digital engagement also allows carriers to acquire and service their customers at a lower cost. And all this is boosting profit.
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Q: Where do you see the insurance industry going in 2018?
A: We have seen 2018 as the year of moving from concept to action. Many early-adopting organizations we work with are transitioning from pilots to operationalization, as they’ve proven the value of digital engagement over the last 12-18 months. These early adopters, and the outcomes they’ll produce, will cause others to adopt similar initiatives in order to remain competitive in the marketplace. We see this transition taking place over the next 6-12 months, making 2018 a ‘tipping point’ year.