Life Insurance Companies and Marketing Strategies
Uncertainty is universal phenomenon. Uncertainty leads to risk of physical
and psychological. The terms risk and uncertainty are used interchangeably. Nobody
can avoid the risk. Risk refers to a situation in which the probability of each of the
outcomes of an event is known and where as uncertainty refers to a situation in which
even such probabilities are not known. Risk can be managed with the help of risk
management techniques. Risk management is a systematic process of evaluating and
managing risk by adopting certain risk management methods. The risk management
methods include loss control, loss financing and internal risk reduction. The loss
financing methods are retention, insurance, hedging and other contractual methods.
Insurance is one of the effective risk management tools. Insurance is a contract to
finance the losses of the insured. That is the insurer provides funds for special losses
in exchange of receiving a premium from the insured. Insurance is a form of contract
or agreement under which one party agrees in return for a consideration to pay an
agreed amount of money to another party to make good for loss, damage or injury to
something of value in which the insured has a pecuniary interest as a result of some
uncertain event. Insurance is a social device in which a group of individuals transfer
rise to another party in order to pool the losses, which provides for financing of losses
from funds contributed by all members who transferred risk. Insurance business is
classified as life and non-life or general. Life insurance includes all risks related to the
lives of human being and general insurance covers the rest.
The term insurance marketing refers to the marketing of insurance services with the aim to
create customer and generate profit through customer satisfaction. The marketing mix is the
combination of marketing activities that an organization engages in so as to best meet the
needs of its targeted market. The marketing includes sub mixes of the 7 Ps of marketing i.e.
the product, price, place, promotion, people, process and physical distribution. Here the
product is intangible. The products or schemes are services of life insurance companies.
Customers can get the assistance and advice of the agents, prestige of the insurance company
and the facilities of claims and compensation along with the schemes. The price of insurance
is in the form of premium rate. Premium rates are determined based on mortality of a person,
expenses and interest. Place is related to the location of the insurance branches. A branch
manager considers number of factors to make attention such as smooth accessibility,
availability of infrastructural facilities and the management of branch office furnishing, civic
amenities and facilities, parking facilities and interior office decoration. In promoting
insurance business the agents and the rural career agents play an important role. As the part
of the promotional activities life insurance companies arrange Kirthans, Exhibitions, in
establishing Fairs and Festivals, rural wall painting and publicity drive through the mobile
publicity van units to attract policyholders. About People concern the companies involve a
high level of interaction, which is very important to satisfy customers. Training, development
and strong relationships with intermediaries are key area to be kept under consideration. The
speed and accuracy of payment is given as great importance in the process. The process
should be easy and convenient to customers. As the physical distribution concern the
awareness increases, the product become simpler. Now-a-days the intermediaries are
different types. For example in U.K retailers like Marks & Spencer sells insurance products.
The remote distribution channels such as telephone or internet are good to decrease overhead
charges. Banks are also playing as intermediaries for insurance companies the way of the
method is called as bancassurance.
In earlier days, life insurance corporation of India (LIC) was a monopoly in
the life insurance industry with its good marketing strategies. After emergence of private life
insurance companies, the market share of the LIC is reduced to 76%. In decade period of time
22 life insurance companies are added and they also occupied certain market shares. They
captured the market shares by focusing target segments and created policies to suit the needs
and desires of the policyholders. And the private life insurance companies introduce many
more innovative marketing strategies using updated technologies. The companies have
confidence of getting potential customers in their future endeavours.