Experts List Customer Satisfaction Strategies For Insurance, Pension Sectors

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Developing visible, customer-focused leadership, gaining true understanding of customers, empowering customer-facing frontline, including the back office in customer-facing discussions, capturing metrics and feedback that matter and taking tangible action are necessary steps that insurance and pension operators must take to deepen growth in both sectors.

Growth-driven regulation, deliberate and sustained regulator/operators/stakeholders engagement, personalized products and services tailored toward meeting the needs of the customers and excellent service delivery are critical to enhancing customer satisfaction and retention.

These views were expressed by experts who spoke at the 7th edition of Business Today national conference held in Lagos yesterday.

Delivering the theme paper “Customer Satisfaction In Deepening Penetration In Insurance and Pension Sectors,” Chief Executive Officer, Centre for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE), Dr Muda Yusuf, highlighted some of the do’s and don’t about customer satisfaction and also suggested what the operators in insurance and pension sectors must do to improve customer experience.

For good customer experience, he charged the operators of the two sectors to treat customers the way they would like to be treated, not the way they think they want to be treated, noting that “there is the risk of making assumptions about your customers’ expectations and developing features and services your customers don’t find valuable.”

Dr Yusuf who described excellent customer service as a brand maker, said no matter the industry, it helps grow revenue, maintain customer loyalty, and improve the overall business strategy.

He said customer expectation is critical to customer satisfaction, adding that Customer satisfaction is all about ability to meet customer’s expectations.

According to him, 68% of consumers say they are willing to pay more for products and services from a brand known to offer good customer service experiences.

“For 86%, good customer service turns one-time clients into long-term brand champions; 89% of consumers are more likely to make another purchase after a positive customer service experience.

“93% of customers are likely to make repeat purchases with companies who offer excellent customer service. If the company’s customer service is excellent, 78% of consumers will do business with them again after a mistake,” Dr Yusuf explained.

He said “Increasing customer retention rates by just 5% can increase profits by between 25% and 95%. Nearly three out of five consumers report that good customer service is vital for them to feel loyalty toward a brand.

“A good customer service experience heavily impacts recommendations. Consumers who rate a company’s service as “good” are 38% more likely to recommend that company.

“Investing in new customers is between 5 and 25 times more expensive than retaining existing ones. 83% of customers agree that they feel more loyal to brands that respond and resolve their complaints.

“Businesses can grow revenues between 4% and 8% above their market when prioritizing better customer service experiences. 80% of companies use customer satisfaction scores to analyze customer experience and improve it.

“72% of companies believe they can use analytics reports to improve the customer experience. The customer experience management market worldwide is worth as much as $7.6 billion in 2020. This is a 16.9% year-over-year increase from its value of $6.5 billion in 2019.

While warning operators of the two sectors against bad customer experience, Dr Muda Yusuf posited that “It takes 12 positive customer experiences to make up for one negative experience.

“65% of customers said they have changed to a different brand because of a poor experience. After more than one bad experience, around 80% of consumers say they would rather do business with a competitor.

“Only 20% of consumers will forgive a bad experience at a company whose customer service they rate as “very poor.” (Nearly 80% will forgive a bad experience if they rate the service team as “very good.”) 78% of customers have backed out of a purchase due to a poor customer experience,” he stated.

Customers expectations from insurers, according to Dr Yusuf include prompt settlement of claims; quality products; fair premium; prompt attendance to customers‘ complaint simplicity of policy documents; timely and effective communication of renewal notices and thorough explanations of policies document; staff -client cordial relationship and effective marketing communications to explain product benefits

According to Dr Yusuf, on-line real time; minimum bureaucracy; delivery of services as promised, quality of clients records; good disposition to solving customers problems; technology driven service delivery; ambiance of the office facility and good brand positioning elicits customer confidence.

He said PFAs should ensure employees are never too busy to respond to customers’ request; transparency about deliverables, avoid over promising; give prompt services; they should be responsive; ensure safety of financial assets; work towards ensuring employees behavior instills confidence in customers; consistently courteous with customers..

During the panelists discussions comprising the Managing Director of Boff & Company, Mr. Oreoluwa-Ebunoluwa Olarinmoye, who represented the Chairman of the occasion, Mr Babajide Olatunde Agbeja, Chairman Boff & Company, Managing Director, Tangerine General Insurance, Mr Ademayowa Adeduro, Managing Director, International Energy Insurance PLC, Mr. Olasupo Sogelola and Pension Consultant, Mrs Idu Okwuosa-Okeahialam emphasized the need for the two sectors to develop products that meets the needs of customers and internalize the culture of excellence service delivery, that will translate to good customer satisfaction.

They also harped on the need for operators to provide incentives for their existing customers as a retention strategy.

Earlier in her welcome address, the Managing Editor of BusinessToday Communication Limited, Mrs. Nkechi Naeche-Esezobor empasised the importance for the two sectors to adopt excellent customer satisfaction strategy to drive their growth objective.

While describing consumer as the vehicle through which insurance and pension sectors could achieve their target on penetration and market deepening in pursuit of the country’s financial inclusion project, she said good customer consumer experience is critical in achieving this goal.

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