Kyle Nakatsuji of American Family Ventures recently published an outstanding post outlining the ways in which AmFam Ventures views the changing landscape of insurance distribution. In the post, Nakatsuji introduces the concept of an “intent-driven” insurance customer and an “opportunity-driven” customer.
The intent-driven consumer describes the traditional, legacy insurance consumer, one that has been served well for generations by traditional agents and direct writers. Conversely, the opportunity-driven consumer is a new breed, one that is less likely to be served by the traditional agent or direct writer. Those consumers may not be driven by a specific risk management need, but instead are driven by relevancy or overarching value.
So, on one side, we have the rise of the opportunity-driven consumer. On another, we have a second trend uncovered by Accenture in 2014, stating that 67% of consumers would happily buy insurance from a non-insurance brand.
The intersection of these two trends is powerful. When combined, it creates a persona that could describe millions of Americans: the consumer who is open to buying insurance when it’s offered at a relevant time by a brand it already trusts and has a relationship with.
We built MyLifeProtected because of this intersection.
67% of consumers would happily buy insurance from a non-insurance brand.
MyLifeProtected is a mobile-first, digital insurance platform that enables trusted brands to further engage their customers through insurance distribution. Our solution is relatively new on the insurance and insurtech scene, but our business is not. We developed MyLifeProtected after years of working in the auto and home insurance industry’s most difficult states, including Massachusetts and New Jersey. You can read more about that transition here.
What we learned in those years is that the intersection described above is a real thing that’s happening in the American insurance market. We built MyLifeProtected not to be another direct-to-consumer play focused mainly on a superb front-end experience, but to be a business that delivers an end-to-end insurance and technology solution for our partners. Here’s how we do it:
It’s well-known that the insurance industry has been slower than comparable industries to adopt consumer-focused technology. Despite these challenges, our core products are available to our customers via our proprietary API that we built alongside our underwriting and technology partners. This includes both quoting in real-time, sometimes with multiple carriers, as well as “click-to-bind”, which allows a customer to complete a purchase online with a credit card or checking account number.
We want our products in those “incidental channels” that Nakatusji describes in his post, but to do that, we need our delivery mechanism to be as flexible as possible.
How this addresses the market – The best way to meet the opportunity-driven consumer will vary widely based on what business or product that customer happens to be interacting with. By focusing on making our core products available via our proprietary API, we have the flexibility to develop consumer solutions for our partners and more importantly, our partners have the ability to build their own customer experience via our API. We want our products in those “incidental channels” that Nakatusji describes in his post, but to do that, we need our delivery mechanism to be as flexible as possible. Our products will be in existing enrollment and purchase processes, our quotes alongside relevant content, and our forms hosted on the platforms of our partners.
When we launched our auto and home insurance business, mobile wasn’t terribly important. Today, it’s a different world, which is why we take great care to build our mobile customer experience at MyLifeProtected by placing equal importance on our mobile experience as we do our desktop.
How this addresses the market – Our own metrics tell us that mobile is vital to generating top-of-funnel demand in insurance products. Consumers are browsing for insurance on their mobile devices in record numbers, so in order for us to help our partners build a prospect universe for insurance products, our technology must be mobile-first, as well.
Consumers are browsing for insurance on their mobile devices in record numbers.
Huge product mix
It would be tempting to pick one or two products, find market fit, and focus on distribution, but this is not our approach with MyLifeProtected. We have a very large product mix made up of both property and casualty, as well as health and life products. This spectrum covers auto and home insurance, all the way to simplified whole life, medical products, non-insurance benefits, and beyond. We have built relationships over a number of years with many of the top insurance companies in the country.
How this addresses the market – In the age of the opportunity-driven consumer, more products mean more relevancy. It’s our belief that companies successful at monetizing opportunity-driven insurance consumers in their customer base will require many products to drive market penetration, few. It’s logical: a larger number of products gives a company a higher probability of matching a customer up to a relevant product at a relevant time. MyLifeProtected is setup to enable that type of distribution.
It’s logical: a larger number of products gives a company a higher probability of matching a customer up to a relevant product at a relevant time.
We’re an insurance agency
We don’t simply provide quotes, we’re an agent that writes insurance for the prospects whom our partners bring to us. This means that we don’t sell exclusively on price; we sell on value while simultaneously focusing on delivering the types of business that our wide variety of underwriters are looking for.
How this addresses the market – We understand that in the insurtech ecosystem, good technology plus rates, without service, equals content. MyLifeProtected is not a content businesses; it’s an insurance business. We believe that over time, companies looking to offer insurance to their customers will value not just technology tools and content, but the ability to partner with a company that owns the customer relationship over time and has greater control over more of the value chain. This mentality leads to more revenue for both the agency and the partner, as well as a better and more integrated customer experience for consumers. In addition, because we’re an agency, we have the ability to be focused on a very diverse set of consumer needs, instead of focused on product like underwriters are.
We may look direct-to-consumer, but we’re not
We don’t spend time thinking about how to connect with consumers directly. It’s not part of our strategy. We spend our time thinking about how to enable our partners, like media companies, financial institutions, other insurance companies, and affinity groups, to connect with their customer directly by offering relevant insurance products at the right moment. By doing this, we aim to generate real revenue for our partners.
How this addresses the market – Consumers no longer believe they need to buy insurance from an insurance brand. Instead, consumers want to buy insurance from a company they trust, where they have a relationship. Our B2B2C strategy, focused on enabling our partners, addresses this shift in consumer preference and gives companies the tools, access, and services they need to capitalize. We believe that over the next ten years, non-insurance brands are going to become very good at marketing insurance products, and MyLifeProtected will be there to enable that.
We spend our time thinking about how to enable our partners, like media companies, financial institutions, other insurance companies, and affinity groups.
We are energized by our unique foothold in the market and we’re proud to already be serving fantastic companies such as Sallie Mae, Nationwide Insurance, GradGuard, and Liberty Mutual with our technology and services. You can learn more about how we work with consumer brands here.