The coronavirus pandemic has had profound effects on world economies. In the United States, business interruptions, closures, and mass layoffs have dramatically altered the economic landscape. Some industries have been affected much harder than others; the insurance sector, so far, has not seen significant declines. For insurance agents and brokers, COVID-19 represents an opportunity to forge connections with new clients, including leveraging the power of digital marketing.
Factors Influencing the Insurance Industry’s Stability
Unlike many other business sectors, particularly those deemed non-essential, the need for insurance never goes away. On both the retail and wholesale levels, insurance agencies and brokerages have seen a sharp uptick in interest, both from individuals as well as business owners. Insurance is not an optional item – in the current pandemic where economic hardships loom large, the need for suitable coverage is stronger than ever. There are several factors at play in the insurance industry, helping to provide stability for this sector. Factors include:
- Increased potential for revenues as property & casualty (P&C) and health markets harden during and after the pandemic.
- The ease with which insurance firms can transition to remote working locations and technologies, including video conferencing, email, and telephone operations.
- Historical trends during economic crises; agents/brokerages experienced annual per-share value declines of around 2% during the economic collapse of 2008, and industry analysts suggest similar small drops can be expected due to the coronavirus pandemic. By contrast, many other industry segments saw declines of 60-70%, and can expect similar drops going forward.
To best weather the potential changes in economic conditions, insurance agencies and insurance brokers should step up their digital marketing efforts. By doing so, they are better able to engage with new clients while conveying a message of stability and strength.
Questions and Concerns About Insurance: Opportunities for Agents
People across the country have many questions and concerns about insurance during the COVID-19 pandemic. These questions and concerns can be a springboard for digital marketing initiatives. Insurance agencies can use common insurance questions to form web content by responding to consumer concerns. Digital content rich with the information those consumers need to make purchasing decisions is a time-honored digital marketing practice. Common insurance-related questions include:
- What if my business operations are interrupted by the pandemic? What insurance coverages and services are available to help me manage my risks?
- What if I become infected with COVID-19 in the workplace? Am I covered under business or workers’ comp insurance plans?
- What emerging risk exposures might I face during or after the coronavirus pandemic?
- Are there gaps in my existing insurance coverage, and what solutions are available to fill those gaps?
- What can I do to minimize my risks during the pandemic?
Digital marketing efforts during and after the pandemic can be considered a crucial component of the insurance industry. Improving online visibility, sharing information with consumers, and addressing specific concerns are all ways of building and reinforcing relationships with clients.
Challenges Facing the Industry
Even though the economic prospects of the insurance industry appear to be solid, there are certain challenges that agencies and brokers will face now and after the pandemic is under control. One of the primary challenges agencies will face is that insureds may not be able to pay their premiums on time or are unable to pay at all. With so many people out of work and so many businesses forced to curtail operations, bill-paying difficulties are all but inevitable. Agents and brokers should be prepared to work with clients, responding to financial challenges while helping clients find cost-saving solutions. Here, digital marketing can also provide valuable resources to clients, including:
- Methods to use in streamlining costs and reducing claims experiences.
- State and federal programs designed to support businesses facing economic hardships.
- Risk management strategies and services.
As with any business, digital marketing is a powerful tool that can be used for many purposes. Insurance agents have the ability to use this tool to share information and insurance solutions with clients, no matter where they may be located. During the pandemic and long after, digital marketing for insurance agencies is a proven business driver, ensuring a stable and successful business future.
About Neilson Marketing Services
Since 1988, Neilson Marketing Services has been implementing innovative marketing solutions and strategies for our clients in all areas of marketing. Contact us today at (866) 816-1849 to put our talent, expertise, and vast resources to work for you. Let’s make things happen, together!