Industry will fund operation to promote protection insurance to consumers
The concept of a generic protection industry-wide campaign aimed at boosting protection uptake among the general public has become concrete reality.
A comprehensive planning exercise designed to advise on how best to attract consumers is to be funded by the protection insurance industry.
A total of 22 firms from the production and wholesale side of the industry have engaged financial services public policy consultancy firm Cicero Consulting to report back with a plan by the autumn. The 22 have agreed to equal funding.
The firms have appointed a committee consisting of Graham Harvey, managing director of Axa Protect; Alan ferguson, protection marketing director at Legal & General; Richard Jones, protection market director at Scottish Widows; Jason Hurley, head of sales and marketing at reinsurer RGA UK; and Tom Baigrie, managing director of Baigrie Davies and LifeSearch. Baigrie will act as the committee's chair.
Committee member Hurley said: "Our aim is to develop and conduct research into how to reach the consumer. The protection industry is keen to raise its game and to engage with the consumer ever more effectively."
Baigrie also pointed out that, with less than 30 firms on the production and wholesales side of protection insurance, the 22 already on board was the vast majority and that the group has not yet asked all possible parties. Of those companies that have been asked and have yet to commit to joining, none to date have said no.
Stipulating that his involvement in the scheme was as an individual and not as a representative of his firm or the distribution sector, Baigrie said: "We have focused on the production and wholesale firms as they have the budget for this sort of thing. We do hope for something from the distribution side in the future and that more will join us."
"We, in this group, have a common belief that the consumer is inadequately protected and are building a common cause to address that," he added.
One stated aim of the project is to begin using the name protection insurance as a general term. "This is the term we are trying to make standard; it's what we do. One of the problems we have is that we have no generic name for what we do and the public only know the terms for a few of the products within the industry."
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