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Successful B2C Marketing in the Wake of Health Care Reform

The target audience of health insurance companies is changing due to the shifting landscape of the industry. Health care reform, specifically the mandate that requires uninsured Americans to obtain insurance coverage by 2014, has made it necessary for insurers to focus more of their marketing efforts on B-to-C prospects as opposed to B-to-B prospects.

To achieve success in this venture, it is imperative for insurers to understand consumers in order to market effectively to the right type of consumer for their policies. Gathering data is an essential part of the process. Demographics like life stage (age), occupation, budget, spending behaviors and medical history can guide insurers in the right direction when looking for suitable prospects.

Insurers should also be cognizant of the differences between marketing to consumers who purchase policies through their agency alone, and marketing to consumers who are shopping for policies via state or federally run health insurance exchanges, which are required to start operating in 2014. A large number of consumers researching their coverage options via the exchanges will do so because their priorities are affordable coverage and subsidies to cut costs further.

Establishing and maintaining a good reputation on social media channels is also important. Consumers are much more prone to utilize resources like social media to seek out customer experiences and get an idea of what it is like to work with a particular insurance company. In the same vein, optimizing content for smartphones and tablets will be another key piece of the puzzle, as many consumers conduct research via these platforms.

Lead companies are one surefire method for closing the insurer-consumer gap. These companies employ strategies like search engine marketing to generate qualified, high quality leads. This greatly improves the chances for closing the sale down the line, as well as obtaining desirable clients. It also provides a source of new, fresh leads who have not already been approached by the insurer numerous times without success.