What's Trending in Auto? Find Out at the Auto Insurance Report Conference!
One of our "don't miss" annual conferences is hosted by the Auto Insurance Report. Leaders from the auto insurance community will share their research and insights with more than 300 attendees on April 21-23 in Key Biscayne, Florida. We will be among those listening closely to all of the speakers, including Brian Sullivan, Conference Chairman and Editor of the Auto Insurance Report.
The Auto Insurance Report National Conference always features a broad range of topics, and this year is no exception. While many are of value, I am particularly interested in one presentation: “Unlocking the Secrets of Auto Insurance Shopping” (Ash Hassib, LexisNexis). Why? The topic relates to a trend we are watching - the move of small to mid-size mutuals into the on-line buying space.
Internet sales are standard practice for national writers, but now many mutual insurers are expanding their own on-line shopping experience. These insurers recognize that young adults buying their first policy are likely to research options on the Internet, and that some will stay there to buy their policy. Insurers need to be where consumers shop.
An on-line insurance sale is only the first part of the puzzle. Will those buyers be satisfied and stay with the carrier after the sale? When agents place the order, we tend to see greater insurer retention. That personal and professional agency relationship is noticeably absent from the Internet - unless the carrier takes additional steps to build one. Also, what if the customer has a bad experience and no agent to prevent or later iron out any misunderstandings? McKinsey reported such a scenario at last year's Conference.
Insurers realize the value of Internet sales for reaching new customers, but they also need to ensure a positive buying experience to keep those customers. That is the reality for mutual insurers. We hope that the Conference will shed more light on solutions on this topic and other challenges facing our business. Speaking of other challenges, we look forward to hearing more on these timely agenda topics:
- Telematics - Poised to Enter the Mainstream
- What Customers Really Want - and Which Insurers Can Give It to Them
- Refining Credit Scores - Using New Data Sets
Liz Kramer (Gen Re's Umbrella reinsurance specialist), and I (Gen Re's Auto reinsurance specialist) will be there for all the speakers, not least of whom is Brian Sullivan for his "Twenty Trends in Twenty Minutes." If you are there, look for us and stay tuned for our post-conference comments.