Ecosystems enable insurers to sell more complex offerings, personalize experiences and achieve a scale otherwise not possible. Learn four factors for a successful platform strategy.

Gone are the days when high performance meant optimizing operations within your four walls. Today’s insurers must adapt to a collaborative digital economy in which there are no industry boundaries, organizations sell outcomes rather than products, and competitors pool data to better meet customer needs.

Today’s consumers expect simple, seamless, personalized, convenient and frequent access to their service providers—and on-demand platforms are setting customer service standards. Each interaction with a platform-driven service, from shopping to ride-sharing, changes customer expectations about how they should be able to interact with their insurance companies.

The emerging insurance ecosystem is much more than simply bundling insurance with other services. It’s about selling more complex offerings, personalizing the experience and achieving a scale that isn’t possible otherwise.  

Consider Chubb, which has partnered with Suning to distribute insurance to the Chinese retailer’s more than 230 million e-commerce customers. Or Amazon Alexa’s natural language capabilities, which could arguably become a sales channel. Four success factors for insurance platforms.

Accenture has identified four success factors for insurers as they consider their platform strategy:

  • Find the right value proposition. Insurers must understand the role they play within their ecosystem of choice, and how to derive value from that ecosystem. From there, they can develop a strong value proposition to address customer needs and expectations at specific life events.
  • Embrace “coopetition.” Insurers must be prepared to think differently within an ecosystem—for example, by sharing data with a former competitor so both parties can offer more robust living services built around a customer’s needs.
  • Move early to secure an advantage. There will probably only be a few dominant ecosystems within key industries like healthcare, transport and home automation. Insurers must move quickly to embed themselves in the best platforms.
  • Distribute risks across a portfolio. Accenture recommends distributing risk across a portfolio—for example, investing in Insurtechs, partnering with existing platform owners and aligning with similar service providers like auto manufacturers.

A recent Accenture report outlines the options available for insurers: operate their own platform, become a player in someone else’s, or opt for a hybrid of the two. Regardless, all insurers need a platform strategy, period. 

I encourage you to learn more about the primary pillars of a platform strategy. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you’d like to learn more about how Accenture can help insurers capture the opportunities of emerging ecosystems.

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