4 Mistakes Life Insurance Marketers Make with Millennials

They’re all grown up, but just who are the millennials?

The nickname refers to the generation after the baby boomers who were born from 1981 to 1996, according to Pew Research. Forbes reports millennials, or Generation Y, will be the wealthiest generation in American History by 2030 when they inherit over $68 trillion from their parents.

The millennial group is often analyzed and discussed because their values are strikingly different from previous generations. They are highly educated, and because they have grown up with technology, they welcome innovation and change and have clear expectations of the companies that they choose. Life Insurance Marketing and Research Association (LIMRA) found that just 20% of millennials said they were very likely to buy life insurance. That means marketers are missing 80% of the market.

A leading consulting firm, Accenture, says half of all insurers focus on customer acquisition to drive growth.  But how do life insurance companies and marketers reach the younger population? Here are four mistakes to avoid when trying to convert visitors to policyholders.

Mistake #1 Telling the Wrong Story

Millennials often choose purpose over product. Many young people distrust financial institutions. They’ve grown up with more choices than their boomer parents, which has made them savvy consumers who often look at offerings as commodities.

It’s about authenticity, and they can sniff out “fake,” manufactured marketing a mile away. To reach millennials, avoid hype and traditional adspeak, and be ultra-transparent.

You know your product, but it may not be easy for you to view your brand messaging objectively. An experienced technology partner can be instrumental in implementing digital marketing tactics to ensure consistently targeted messaging.

A perfect example of openness that leads to new millennial life insurance policies is upfront pricing. LIMRA tells us that 65% of this generation list cost as the reason for not buying life insurance, and millennials under the age of 25 overestimate the actual cost of life insurance by nearly four times. Give them a real idea of the monthly price based on target demographics.

What’s your story, and how does it change the world? Millennials resonate with brands that embrace social causes. Once they find a brand they love, 60% show fierce loyalty.

Brand stories that focus on company financials are especially stale to millennials. They want to see themselves as the hero of the buying experience and your company as the guide.  Along with the expected heady facts, also highlight your heart for the community.


For example, Lemonade is an online home and renters insurance provider that trumpets the causes they give to, and they’re growing in the younger market. Their tagline is “Instant everything. Killer prices. Big heart.”

Mistake #2: Marketing to the Wrong Buyer Persona

Many millennials are more concerned about paying off student loan debt than providing for a family in the event of an untimely death, according to Business Insider.

They are the boomerang generation, meaning they went to college and then moved back in with mom and dad. Yes, they’re “adulting,” but Gallup says only 27% of them are married.

So, don’t alienate them with the family-focused pictures of the home, spouse, and 2.5 kids. Instead, focus on the individual and integrate your family content into a digital footprint built around life and asset events. Life events are changes like career moves, marriage, and the first child. Asset events are significant purchases, such as the first car or home.

Northwestern Mutual shares content built around life and asset events to attract millennials.

Mistake #3 Misfiring Your Mobile Strategy

Millennials are digital natives meaning they were raised in a media-saturated, digital world. Insurance companies know a mobile presence is crucial, but often try to fit the traditional “square peg” web design into the mobile “round hole.” Exclamation Labs excels in working with insurance companies to develop a mobile-first website strategy that will specifically target millennials.

Our design team conceptualizes a similar look and feel across platforms and devices. Brand unity, great design, striking photography, and video content are the price of admission. Copy should be short, witty, and relatable.

Millennials value ease of use and want functional and fast sites above all. If they have to wait for loading, then you’re driving them away (Google says three seconds is too long). Forbes recommends progressive web apps (PWA) versus downloadable apps. PWA is a mobile app delivered through the web that increases speed and, therefore, conversions.

Mistake #4 Using Old-School Ads and Communication

As much as 84% of Generation Y distrust traditional marketing, according to Forbes.

Millennials do far more research than earlier generations before buying. Your brand must feature reviews that reflect the diversity and demographics of your buyer personas. Reviews with real names, locations, and people are vital and sometimes go viral.

Insurify is an auto, home, and life insurance company disrupting the market by going straight after millennials without the traditional agent model. Watch the video.

Destiney's Insurify Story

Authenticity is key. Millennials will share the good, the bad, and the ugly on social media. Don’t stop at Facebook and Twitter, but meet them where they’re at on Instagram and Snapchat.

Advertisers can use real-time marketing, or, data-driven ads focused on customer urgency at the time of purchase. Let’s say a prospective customer reads your article on “Strategies for Reducing Debt,” and a banner ad follows the lead over to social media and then prompts a quote. Your web design team should use cookies, IP addresses, and other personal information that boosts the user experience and leads to conversions.

Millennials expect companies to provide 24/7 digital communication and around-the-clock social media monitoring. Chat boxes are helpful along with FAQs, answer videos, and user-generated content such as forums. This generation can share their knowledge and build community within your brand. Turn your customer service to self-service wherever possible.

Choosing The Right Insurance Marketing and Tech Partner

Millennials have clear expectations, and the architecture of your company’s digital presence is key to achieving all of these goals. Intuitive portals, a robust mobile-first website with good UX, and active tracking will allow for seamless communication with prospective millennial customers.

Exclamation Labs allows you to work with the best of both worlds. We are a partner who specializes in the insurance industry, with over 24 years of experience of equal parts technical and marketing ability.

To learn more, contact Exclamation Labs at (888) 545-5008. Our team will be happy to answer any questions you have.
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