Actually, they must.
According to a report by McKinsey, US auto insurance brands that provide customers with consistently best-in-class experiences generate 2-4x more growth and 30% higher profitability than companies with an inconsistent customer focus.
“Some executives may still see insurance as a low-engagement, disintermediated category,” the report states. “But leading carriers are delivering customer experiences that inspire loyalty and attract new customers frustrated by their experiences with their current carriers.”
So, what does this best-in-class customer care look like? It’s personalized, cross-platform, and immediately accessible from customers’ preferred social channels. As Accenture found, 88% of insurance customers demand more personalization from providers and 52% want to be able to make a complaint online.
Here are four insurance brands that already deliver superior customer care on social media.
Paris-based insurance company AXA understands the benefits of providing social care. As CEO Thomas Buberl said, “The key is to be where customers are.”
After AXA France launched its customer care operation on Facebook Messenger, it saw 81% of questions on social media come through that channel, and reduced negative comments on the AXA France Facebook page by 53%.
AXA uses Facebook to not just share new policies and links to informative blog content, but also to answer customer questions – even in the comments sections of posts, as with this exchange:
AXA also continues to be transparent about their customer care on Facebook, proudly posting updates like this one from July 2018:
Woah, July was another busy month for us in the social team! 🎊 How was your July?
Responding to queries within an hour is no small feat. According to a study by Convince & Convert, 42% of customers expect a response within an hour and 32% expect a response within 30 minutes. Brands that don’t deliver will be left behind for those – like AXA – that do.
In 1950, an Allstate general sales manager coined the motto “You’re in good hands” after his wife told him their ill daughter was “in good hands” with her doctor. Almost 70 years later, the motto still holds strong – today reflecting the high level of care that Allstate provides on social media.
Most notably, Allstate has a separate Twitter account, @AllstateCares, dedicated just to providing customer service on the platform. Care representatives respond quickly and include their initials on each post so customers know there is a real person behind each interaction. They also use Twitter’s DM prompt feature, inviting customers to switch to a private chat with just one click.
Allstate proves that you don’t need to be a startup or tech company to make an effort on social. By launching social care channels, insurance companies can reach customers where they’re already active and provide real-time care.
For example, Flo responds on Facebook Messenger if customers have questions or concerns about their policies:
Over on Twitter, she responds to customers’ positive comments, helping to build brand affinity and create a multi-platform experience for Progressive’s beloved character.
I’m still trying to get all that sand out of my shoes😂
— Flo from Progressive (@ItsFlo) August 2, 2018
The main Progressive Twitter account also responds to customers’ comments and concerns:
Thanks for the shout-out! We'd love to hear additional details on your experience so we can recognize our consultants. If you'd like to share, please use the link to DM your policy numbers and any additional details you'd like to share. ^JJ https://t.co/MfLhP0sJPV
— Progressive (@Progressive) May 15, 2018
Going further, they often make sure the conversation doesn’t end on Twitter by providing follow-up communication channels and links to content from the #ProgressiveAnswers site, which includes helpful articles like “Should I add my teen driver to my policy?” and “Do accidents affect insurance rates?”
Country Financial knows its customers. With “roots firmly planted in agriculture,” the company has steadily grown its insurance range to meet the needs of rural America – from fire and lightning protection, to hail crop and farm equipment insurance, to life insurance.
Founded in 1925, Country Financial has come a long way since those early days of paper rate books filled in with pencil. The company has a lively, interactive social media presence. The brand handle on Twitter responds to customers on a 1:1 basis, and even takes part in Tweet Chats.
A2) Not knowing where your 💰 is going? That’s stressful. ☝ word answer: budgeting. If the thought of a budget is overwhelming, try the 50-30-20 rule: https://t.co/JkJ9tGXJCE #InsureYourLoveChat https://t.co/RjV4BJoQCk
— COUNTRY Financial (@hellocountry) February 7, 2019
— COUNTRY Financial (@hellocountry) February 7, 2019
By answering questions and contributing to financial planning discussions, Country Financial shares helpful information while keeping its brand top-of-mind among potential customers.
Call centers and support emails are still important, but if insurance companies want to retain their customers and attract new ones, they need to provide care on social media
In fact, McKinsey found that settlement amount ranked 12th among factors driving customer satisfaction with auto insurance company claims. The most important factors were employee courtesy and ease of communication. Meaning customers cared more about the quality of their service than the cost of their payment.
That’s why companies like Allstate, Progressive, and AXA are ahead of the game – making social an integral part of their care operations and creating interactive experiences that keep customers invested.
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