The evolution of the Internet and the rise of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets have placed information in the palms of our hands in unprecedented ways. These technological advances have brought with them an important shift in expectations. The shift is this: People today expect to be able to immediately interact with information presented to them.
Evolving to meet changing customer expectations
This shift has far-reaching implications for customer engagement, particularly in a document-centric industry like insurance. Gone are the days when insurance customers will be satisfied to receive a static PDF account statement. While reading an insurance statement and related documents (welcome kits, EOBs, etc.) isn’t typically considered an enjoyable activity, it can become one for the customer by adding the dynamic ability to click on colorful charts or graphs of their choosing, or watching videos right on their interactive statements.
This kind of interactivity has received the name “gamification” for its game-like attributes, and a 2011 study by JWT Intelligence found that 63 percent of respondents said making everyday activities more like a game would make them more fun and rewarding.
Gamification is the key
So here is the new opportunity: Introducing elements of gamification in to your insurance documents may be the single most effective way to improve your customers’ relationship with and loyalty to your organization.
Offering communications that are dynamic is an innovative way to take something that may otherwise be viewed as a chore (reviewing coverage, transactions, amounts due, terms and conditions, etc.) and transform it into an engaging experience that has added value and improves the customer experience.
Dynamic communications have the potential to enhance the customer experience in many important ways, including:
- A higher level of personalization – Today, the customer decides what information they want to see and how they want to see it. Now your policyholder can have the ability to customize their statement so that the information most important to them, such as payment due dates or accumulated balances, is prominently displayed.
- Deep interactive capabilities – Customers can view their insurance documents with attractive graphs and charts that can be clicked on to provide detail that is more specific, even drilling down to a granular level and varying the views with a few clicks. This interactivity improves customer education and understanding and reduces the need for customer service calls for questions or clarifications.
- Multichannel delivery options – Maximizing HTML technology, dynamic communications can be viewed on any PC, tablet, smartphone and/or other mobile device.
- Accessibility online or offline – Meeting expectations in today’s “on the go” world, customers can interact with their dynamic insurance communications anytime, anywhere it is most convenient for them.
The benefits are not just for your customer
In addition to these important customer benefits, dynamic communications can give your organization a number of new capabilities as well, including gaining insight into customer preferences by tracking clicks as well as the ability to present highly relevant and personalized offers and messages—including videos—to target new products and services.
Putting it all together
Forward-thinking organizations realize the time has come to make lifeless PDFs a thing of the past and get on board with modern communications. The marketplace is proving that insurers getting the most customer stickiness are the ones that are incorporating some level of interaction into their customer experiences. Engaging insurance customers through dynamic communications will deepen relationships with them, enhance their experience with every interaction, increase loyalty and, best of all, differentiate your insurance organization from the competition.
Editor’s Note: Michael Charest is vice president of Insurance, Financial Services & Healthcare for GMC Software Technology, North America (www.gmc.net), a provider of multichannel and highly personalized document outputs for customer communication management.