7 Ways Insurance Companies Can Use SMS
Getting people’s attention has never been harder. If you want to reach them you need to find them where they are and that means the mobile in their pocket, purse or hand. With SMS messaging, you can contact anyone with a mobile phone regardless of network or device type (even basic phones support SMS).
Insurance companies have lots of ways they can put SMS messaging to work for building their business and managing customer relations. The following list covers 7 different use cases that can apply to any type of insurance.
1. Meeting reminders
How much time is wasted by your agents because of people who miss their appointments? People are easily distracted and time just gets away from them. Sending an SMS message to remind them of an appointment reduces no-show rates. Just think about all the time and money you can save when agents don’t have to waste time waiting for people who never show up.
Along with a reminder, you can give them the option to reschedule or cancel via text too. By making it easy for people to make changes, your agents will be able to manage their schedule more efficiently and fill in those last minute cancellations.
2. Important events
A few well timed SMS messages can help improve your customer relations. Is it time for a policy renewal? Send a short message letting the customer know they need to take action to renew. Or just send a courtesy reminder if the renewal is automatic.
You can also send birthday wishes or acknowledge other life events with a text message. Insurance companies are often seen as cold institutions, but a few nice messages can make your customers feel you really care about them. And when your customers feel good about you, they’re more likely to stay loyal even in the face of lower rates elsewhere.
3. Cross promotions
There are so many different types of insurance you offer, why not let your customers know about them? Send a message letting your home insurance customer know of your great car insurance rates.
Do you offer discounts for multiple insurance holders? You can let your customers know via SMS that they can save even more by contacting you for a multiple policy quote.
4. Text for a quote
Your customers are likely to have their mobile near them at all times. Why not ask them to text you for a quick rate quote in your standard advertising? They can easily contact you in a low pressure way while riding the Tube, or sitting on their couch watching TV. Just ask them to text a keyword (e.g. “car”) to your number to get started. Then you could automatically, or even have an agent, ask a few more questions using two way texts to offer a quote.
Just a few simple questions and you could have enough information to send them back an estimate (to be refined later when they visit you or go to your website). The process would be so simple and painless for the customer they’d be impressed by your company and be more likely to get a policy.
5. Preventative tips
Often times claims can be avoided by simple preparation. But your policy holders might not be aware of the things they can do. For example you could send your home policy customers tips on how to keep their home safe while travelling. It could be simple tips like using a light timer and not letting the mail pile up.
Life insurance holders could use tips on staying healthy, auto policy holders could use safe driving tips. For every policy type you sell, there are probably dozens of preventative tips you share with your customers. They may not read their email, or the post, but they will read text messages which could end up reducing the number of claims you receive.
6. Claim updates
If someone has filed a claim, chances are they’ll be anxious to get the situation resolved. SMS messages are a great way to keep customers updated as the claims make it through your review process.
Send a confirmation message when the claim is received, another one when it’s actively being reviewed, then another one letting them know if you need more information. Keeping them informed every step of the way helps put them at ease, but it can also reduce enquires to your call centres or agents for updates.
Do you know what your customers think of you? Have you asked them lately? Sending out a short SMS survey can be an easy and quick way to get some insight into how your company is performing and how you are perceived.
The surveys could be sent randomly to all customers or triggered based on events. Automatically send out a survey two days after a claim is closed to see what they thought of your process and results. Send a different survey out to people who’ve used your customer service centre recently and see if they had a good (or bad) experience. Survey results can always help you improve on what you’re doing and using SMS makes it quick and easy for everyone.
These are probably just a few of the ways the insurance industry can use SMS messaging. But they can all lead to cost or time savings or both.