Millennials are less likely to buy insurance than their elder counterparts, but that doesn’t mean salespeople should overlook them entirely. Let’s discuss why it’s important to target this generation, and how to do so effectively.Millennials make up the largest age demographic in the U.S., but you wouldn’t know it if you work in insurance: A recent survey (found here on insurancequotes) found that one in four adults aged 18 to 29 don’t have health insurance, a trend that extends to other types of coverage. While many of us might look at these statistics and throw our hands up in disbelief, there is hope for engaging this untapped market.
What Makes Millennials Different?
We can point to several different factors that contribute to the underinsured Millennial phenomenon. They generally have fewer measurable assets than their parents and grandparents, and often express less concern about the possibility of future health or finance issues. But perhaps the biggest driving factor, according to Dan Kadlec at Money, is the convenience of parental assistance.
Many young adults continue to receive financial support after college, and thus have little incentive to prioritize insurance over more short-term investments (happy hour, anyone?). Add it all up, and the insurance industry finds itself more out of style than MySpace.
And if a Millennial is insured, it’s often because he or she remains covered under a family member’s plan. The Affordable Care Act allowed children to remain on a relative’s plan until age 26, completely changing the landscape for health insurance sales. Unsurprisingly, Gallup finds that older people value affordability and reputation when choosing an insurance company, but young adults are more likely to follow a parent’s lead.
Why Target Them?
Accenture estimates that there are 80 million Millennials currently living in the United States, and they spend roughly $600 billion a year — a number will rise to $1.4 trillion by 2020. They’re also starting to dominate the workforce, according to LifeHealthPro, as their Baby Boomer parents begin retiring in droves. And of course, they won’t all stay 25 forever, which means it’s time for insurance salespeople to start charting their course for success in the Millennial market.
In a recent presentation on marketing to Millennials, Sarah Sladek, CEO of XYZ University, highlighted the importance of really understanding their unique needs and values. As with every generation, whatever young people are doing eventually “trickles up” and changes the way businesses work. So if you’re not paying attention now, your boss will be tomorrow.
How to Sell
Arguably the most effective way to begin targeting this market is through internet leads. Millennials are infinitely more tech-savvy than any previous generation, and you can count on them thoroughly researching all of their options online before making a purchase. And yes, that includes shopping for insurance policies.
Gallup’s research shows that when they finally take the plunge, Millennials are more than twice as likely to buy insurance online as any other demographic. So even though only 14% of insurance sales currently originate on the Internet, that number promises to rise sooner rather than later. And when it does, salespeople will need to be prepared with effective strategies for digital outreach.
Among LifeHealthPro’s top tips for engaging with Millennials online, the site recommends including reviews and testimonials on your website to humanize your brand. At the end of the day, a lead has to have some degree of faith in your company’s reputation. A study by LIMRA shows that Millennials are attracted to companies that will outwardly support them, not just make them feel they’re one in a sea of leads. So yes, a welcoming, personalized approach to every lead is essential.
Add it all up, and you’ll come to the conclusion that it’s time to stop overlooking the millions ofMillennials out there and start treating them as your clients of the future — you’ll reap the rewards sooner than you think.