Pet Insurance and COVID-19: How Insurers Should Respond

Key takeaways

  • Monitor and test new business models.
  • Review partnership opportunities with companies from the pet industry and insurtech.
  • Make sure your customer journey is well optimised.
  • Design a campaign dedicated to COVID and explain its impact on the life of pets and insurance-related processes.

COVID-19 is the time of great opportunities in the pet insurance industry. According to the latest predictions, the global Pet Insurance market will be considerably growing between 2020 and 2025.

While key players on the market already adopted new strategies, it’s high time for you to plan your next steps. In this article, you’ll learn about six tips, that will help you achieve a competitive advantage and stand out on the market. So let’s dive in!

1. Test insurance business models

Business models are evolving to match the needs of customers better. Thus, monitoring and testing those could be a good idea to stand out.

Peer-to-peer (P2P) or social insurance

P2P insurance is a risk-sharing network where a group of individuals pool their premiums together to insure against risk at lower costs than traditional policies allow. It’s topical during COVID-19 when the average price of dog insurance hit a record high of £378 annually (26% higher than the cost the year before).

By adopting this model, you can often be leaner and more transparent than traditional insurance companies, and offer lower premiums for the customers. Customers of P2P companies can often find themselves filing claims online or even on an app, and have their claims honoured within minutes. Lemonade and Otherwise are good examples following this business model.

B2B2C or API-based Model

Though an API-based model provides a new traffic source to your site, its primary goal is to create a new revenue stream and improve business performance.

An excellent example of this model is Vanbreda – Belgium’s independent broker. It leverages the Qover open API to offer its employees digital-only travel insurance via employee rewards MyVanbreda network. Thanks to open API, business and technology’ needs become further aligned, letting smaller apps benefit from technologies and avoid costly development.

Cross-selling services

You can find prime opportunities to launch complementary services, such as pet food delivery, telemedicine, etc. If you’re looking to break into the pet insurance field, you can potentially capture market share through such services. For example, customers of Embrace can get reimbursed for the pet’s routine care.

New insurance business model examples
New insurance business model examples.

2. Set up new partnerships

Review partnership opportunities with companies from the pet industry and insurtech. Partnership with veterinarians, breeds, pet care savings plans, etc. will help you establish the real value of pet insurance and achieve more revenue and market penetration than solo efforts.

Partnerships with tech providers will help to cut costs, innovate faster and upon customer expectations. Best tips on how to work with insurtechs you can find here>>.

3. Optimise customer journey

Customer journey is an experience that a user has with your brand from the moment of the first engagement until he becomes a loyal customer. COVID-19 made even more people search and buy insurance online. Hence, you have to make sure your customer journey is well optimised.

Customer journey visualisation.
Customer journey visualisation.

Let’s imagine Emily landed on your site for the first time searching for dog insurance offers. Will she find what she needs? There are two questions you should ask yourself first:

  • Does your website work and can Emily access it?

Having a website unavailable hurts your reputation among the users. Also, if the problem continues, it will cause a significant fall in organic traffic via search engines. So, you have to look at speed load, graphical layout, accessibility on all devices, browsers and preferred locations. And of course, you have to eliminate errors and bugs. Free tools like Dotcom-tools, Google Speed Insights, Google Mobile Friendly Test, and others will help you stay up to date with performance and indicate issues faster.

  • Can Emily get her questions answered?

Emily is looking for dog insurance offers. Thus you need to give her all the information on enrollment rules (e.g. minimum and maximum age required), treatments and incidents covered, payout limits and deductibles, reimbursement level (70%, 80% or 90%), pricing, etc. Also, don’t forget to mention what differentiates you / your offer from competitors.

4. Produce high-quality content

You have to produce high-quality content to acquire new clients. In the example with Emily, you have a high user intent. She knows she needs dog insurance and looking for it, thus convincing her to buy from you is more straightforward. But this wouldn’t be the case with Jack. He just recently purchased a cat, and not sure whether his cat needs insurance. Displaying an offer for him will be useless as he wasn’t yet even thinking of buying. Thus, what you should do is warm him up with more educational content. Collect information on what fears people like Jack about pet insurance, why they think they don’t need it during COVID-19 and in general. What would you reply to those objections to change Jack’s mind? Include that in your content. And if you’re interested in acquiring different generations as clients, check out this article>>.

Content is king.

5. Increase touchpoints with customers

With the COVID-19, your existing customers have even more questions and reasons to be stressed. Rules are changing continuously, limiting them in actions, however, no one explains how to behave. Thus, your initiative and support could be very appreciated and awarded in the form of loyalty. Design a campaign dedicated to COVID and explain its impact on the life of pets and insurance-related processes.

Channels for customer engagement.
Channels for customer engagement.

Nowadays people often ask what to do if their vet is closed and vaccination won’t happen in time. They’re worried this would invalidate their insurance. Or what should they do if they can’t get veterinary practice to sign their claim? Guide them before they even reach out. This way, you’ll also take off the burden from your support team.

6. Improve online customer service

You may receive more customer complaints about your service. Thus, it’s a good idea to establish a procedure to help you handle customer complaints calmly and professionally. Make sure to track all the complaints, deliver responses and solve them as fast as possible. In case you can’t solve the problem, ask your team to apologise and add this line to the end communication: “Please let me know if there’s anything else I can do for you. I’m happy to help!”. It’s also a good idea to establish satisfaction ratings on the conversations your support team handles.

And that’s it! So follow these tips and you won’t have to wait long for the results.

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