Four tips for winning round seniors to your insurtech

senior man using a laptop
The forgotten demographic’s CEO Jonathan Breeze shares four steps you can take to persuade seniors to go all-in on your insurtech

Studies show that senior smartphone use is climbing each year, allowing for fintech companies to provide better services suited to older clients. This includes insurtech, which consistently focuses on the customer of tomorrow – the rapidly advancing Generation Z – rather than the customer of today: seniors. 
In doing so, insurtech companies are missing out on a demographic with much more available capital – and therefore much more to gain through insurance. However, it seems that most insurtech companies fail to understand what is most important to seniors: trust. 

As an insurtech company, you should approach selling your tech just as you would if you were helping your grandma – and if you can’t help your grandparents, you don’t deserve to sell your product to them. Here are four simple steps to gaining the trust of seniors.

Step 1: Understand your audience
The first step to gaining the trust of seniors is to understand the financial situation they’re in. As people get older, there is little chance to recover from financial mistakes. Young people still have the opportunity to work in case of disaster, while seniors likely don’t have this option in retirement.
Therefore, seniors need to be very conservative when it comes to putting their money in the hands of other people. To gain this trust, you need to prove that you will be reliable and able to provide them with a no-risk insurance option. 

Reviews are also important. In today’s world, companies gain a good reputation from online reviews from previous customers. It’s essential that you consistently provide quality service to all your customers in order to build a reputation online. The way in which you served your customers in the past will show seniors that you are a worthwhile investment for their future. 

With increased social proof, seniors can see specific examples of how they can trust you. This power in the form of trust should be a guiding principle for your entire strategy.

Seniors need to be very conservative when it comes to putting their money in the hands of other people

Step 2: Select the right partners 
Once you have this foundation, you can begin building a second layer of trust when choosing insurance carriers to represent. Seniors will almost always research the recommended carriers beforehand, so it’s absolutely essential that you work with carriers that have a good reputation. 

This means that you can’t get cute – if you attempt to cut costs and offer an unknown entity, you’re unlikely to have much luck with seniors. Seniors are familiar with well-known brands: brands that already have their own reputation and have built trust themselves. Take advantage of this built-in brand reputation to expand upon your trustworthiness. Companies such as AIG have proven track records of limiting risk, and seniors will almost always prefer the less risky choice over the questionable one.

Step 3: Curate the correct policies  
Once the right carriers are selected, you next need to choose the correct insurance plans for each individual person. Again, reliability and low risk are important factors here. 

Don’t overthink these policies: Simplicity is key. Avoid the bells and whistles that come with some of the larger plans and make sure that they only have what’s needed and nothing else. While some of these plans may seem lucrative, they are best avoided and sometimes have hidden pitfalls that seniors, ever the risk-mitigators, would rather avoid.

The best method is to choose products that are vanilla, obvious, and clear as to what the benefits and exclusions are. Vanilla plans are often less expensive, as well as being less restrictive. Seniors will appreciate simple, fair, and straightforward advice. Warren Buffet, perhaps the greatest investor of the modern era, can lend some guidance here. In his will, he recommended that his estate invest 90 per cent in low-risk tracker funds and the other 10 per cent in treasuries.

The lesson here is that we should look to provide simple, low-risk policies. 

Step 4: Guide them along the way
When you have the customer’s complete trust, you now need to guide them throughout the entire journey. Customer service is crucial as you need to explain every nook and cranny of your insurtech to ensure that your customer understands exactly what they are getting. Have the underlying information presented in a usable format within the website to allow the customer to research, review, and dive into research if necessary. 

Typically, the final stage of the journey is the self-education process that a senior audience takes. As they are carrying out their own due diligence, make sure your customer service helps them along this path of understanding. If your process is in execution only and doesn’t care for the senior along the way, it’s probably not going to work. Just as you would help your elderly grandparents set up their Wi-Fi connection, have your customer service team ready to hold their hand along the way.

For insurtech companies looking to work with seniors, trust is key. Insurtech companies need to cultivate this trust throughout their entire relationship in order to form a fruitful partnership benefiting all involved. ■