Some industries are easier to market than others. For companies in the insurance industry, the challenge is significant. Insurance protects us when we need it, but the truth is that most people don’t recoup the money they pay out in premiums. It can be easy to view insurance as a burden instead of a benefit.
The key to marketing a company in the insurance industry is to find a way to remind your audience of why they need insurance while working around some of the negative impressions people have of the industry as a whole.
Branding and Insurance
All effective marketing starts with branding. When people know and trust your brand, they are more likely to ascribe positive values to you than they are to harbor negative feelings.
Key Values to Convey
Perhaps the most important thing to remember about marketing your insurance company is that the people who buy policies from you are doing so out of fear and uncertainty. They might tell themselves that they are being prudent and practical, but insurance is meant to protect against what cannot be predicted.
For that reason, the values that your branding must convey include things like trust, reliability, stability, and empathy. Insurance companies are in the business to make money, but the last thing you want to do is remind potential customers of that. The specter of greed and financial gain is one that looms over the insurance industry as a whole.
The branding choices you make and the marketing you do must speak to potential clients’ concerns and put the focus squarely on their needs.
Tips to Overcome Customer Concerns
It would be a mistake to talk about the challenges of branding companies in the insurance industry without addressing the issues that play a role in forming the public’s sometimes negative opinion of insurance companies.
During the financial crisis of 2008, many of the companies that were culprits in the collapse were insurance companies. AIG is a prime example. The company’s reputation took a huge hit from which it has yet to fully recover.
Does that mean that you can’t cultivate a positive brand? Absolutely not. Some big insurance companies have managed to do a very good job of connecting with the public. Two examples that come to mind are Progressive Insurance, thanks to their popular spokesperson, Flo; and State Farm, which emphasizes fast, no-hassle service in their television commercials.
The key to overcoming customer concerns and negative perceptions is to:
1. Focus on service and personal attention
2. De-emphasize profits
3. Make it clear that you empathize with your clients
Of course you are still concerned about profits, but your focus need to be on what you can do for potential clients, not on how much money you can make as a result.
Logo Design for the Insurance Industry
Logo design is an important part of branding. Many companies in the insurance industry choose protective images like umbrellas, and reassuring colors like blue and white, to connect with their target audience. Keep in mind the core values you want to convey when you choose a logo.
Examples of Effective Insurance Logos
It may be helpful to look at some examples of famous insurance logos before we look in depth at a logo we designed.
The first logo to consider is the Allstate Insurance logo. It features an image of two hands, cupped together. This is an image that echoes their company logo: You’re in good hands. The logo is rendered in two shades of blue, a color that conveys both trust and stability.
The next logo to consider is from CIGNA. This logo combines the image of a person with the image of a tree, implying that Cigna’s policy can help clients thrive and grow. It’s effective because the image is memorable and plays off earlier versions of their logo, which featured a less stylized tree without the human component.
Insurance Logo Analysis
Now let’s look at a logo that we designed.
This logo uses the image of a lighthouse, something that we all recognize as a symbol of protection and safety. Lighthouses guide ships past treacherous rocks, and the implication is that this company does the same for its clients. Remember, people collect on insurance policies only when going through a difficult time. This image, with its reassuring blue and warm yellow combined with a solid rectangular shape, lets clients know that they can count on this company to protect them.
Marketing Strategy for Insurance Companies
Marketing strategy is the key to marketing success. You have to understand who you are targeting and what you want to say if you hope to be successful.
Elements of Market Strategy
What are the key things you need to consider when it comes to marketing strategy? Each of these is important if you hope to connect with the people most likely to buy insurance from you.
First, you need to understand who your target audience is. Some insurance companies offer hundreds of types of coverage. If that’s the case, then targeting may be a very complex endeavor. However, if you specialize in a single type of insurance, then your job is easy.
Second, you need to understand which qualities are most important to your target audience. What problem are you solving for them? This element may require some competitor research since you’ll want to understand what frustrations might drive clients away from your competitors.
Third, think about what makes your company unique. Why are you different from the other companies out there? When you differentiate yourself, you make it easier to speak to your target audience.
Finally, you need a clear goal. What do you hope to accomplish with your marketing? For example, you might want to sign on three new clients per month in the coming year.
How to Turn Your Strategy into Action
Once you have a strategy in place, you need to turn it into action. That means coming up with a detailed marketing plan that describes exactly what you will do to achieve your goals.
For example, your research might reveal that your target audience is more likely to watch videos than to read content. You decide to produce marketing videos that will address your audience’s concerns and make them feel a connection to your company. From there, you can break the project down into individual tasks, such as hiring someone to write a script for your video and setting up a YouTube channel.
Content Marketing Ideas for Insurance Companies
Now let’s talk about one of the most popular forms of marketing in the internet age, content marketing. Content marketing is effective because it uses the psychological principle of reciprocity. When a company produces content that offers value to their clients, it triggers a desire to reciprocate. The only way that a client can return the favor is to buy from the company that provided the content.
Video Marketing Ideas
Video marketing is popular and with good reason. About two-third of all consumers say they would rather watch a video about a product than read about it.
You can use video marketing to connect with your target audience. Videos can be commercials, but your goal should be to focus not on selling, but on entertaining and educating your audience.
One of the best ways to make that connection is through story-telling. You might hire someone to write a humorous script illustrating the benefits of having insurance. Alternatively, you could feature a true story, a client testimonial that demonstrates how you treat your clients – and why people should choose you over your competitors.
Social Media Marketing Ideas
Marketing on social media has become a must for companies, and the insurance industry is no exception. You can use social media to connect with your audience and provide them with useful information.
One mistake that a lot of companies make is only posting about themselves and their products. Instead, follow industry publications, government agencies, and other pages that might produce content that is relevant to what you do. When you see an article, infographic, or video that might benefit your followers, share it with some commentary.
Infographics are a good way to explain complex data to an online audience. You might consider hiring a graphic designer to make an infographic. The benefit of visual content is that you can share it on Facebook as well as on picture-heavy sites like Instagram and Pinterest.
Finally, consider coordinating your customer service with social media. This might not seem like a marketing idea per se, but it can help improve your image if clients see you responding quickly and graciously in a public forum.
The key to effective marketing and branding in the insurance industry is to keep your attention squarely on your clients (and potential clients) and what they need. The insurance industry might get some negative attention, but you can overcome that with a marketing strategy that focuses on providing value and support to your audience.