Voluntary customers most want human contact

August 12, 2014

Sometimes all that fancy technology isn’t that important. Sometimes people just want good, ol’, human contact.

At least that’s the case when it comes to voluntary marketing, according to a new report from Eastbridge Consulting Group.

Despite advancements in internet enrollments and marketing capabilities as part of the overall voluntary offering for brokers, employers and employees, the firm’s research found that voluntary customers most want a personal or “human” element of contact, whether its in-person, by phone, email, or other means.

“These programs also include multi-layered communication opportunities and messages from carriers that target all three voluntary customer groups — brokers, employers, and employee,” a release about the report read. “Although brokers continue to be most carriers’ primary customer, the interdependent nature of all three makes it important for carriers to pay close to all of their needs.”

The firm’s report compared the marketing practices of 19 carriers in the voluntary market. Its key findings:

  • Voluntary frequently is considered a piece of the overall branding effort and often draws from the strength and brand recognition of the overall corporate brand.
  • Most carriers today have a separate and often detailed marketing plan for the voluntary business.
  • There is “much room for growth” in the carriers’ post-enrollment marketing efforts as a way to build relationships with employees after they purchase.
  • The number of research projects done by carriers today that are specific to voluntary has expanded significantly as they look for ways to successfully compete in the market.

Eastbridge said in its report that, with this information, “voluntary carriers can better evaluate their current marketing practices, structure and integration to boost the competitiveness of the company and their offering.”

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