Oct 21st 2011

Retail banking, insurance and energy providers need to reconnect with customers

New series of white papers reveals the importance of targeted, relevant communications.

October 21, 2011

Customer engagement research, commissioned by Thunderhead, has revealed that customers are increasingly looking for more relevant and personalized correspondence from their service providers, as well as to receive communications via their preferred channel. Providers that haven’t taken note of this trend are at risk of alienating hard earned customers rather than encouraging them to renew their policies or to continue to use an account.

A new series of white papers, now available to download from the Disconnected Customer website, examines customer engagement amongst banking, insurance and energy customers, both in the UK and US, and has revealed that these consumers would prefer to receive more personalized communications. Overall, the research found that customers across all these sectors do not want to be treated as a homogenous group and are sensitive to communications which are drafted indiscriminately for a broad audience. On the other hand, most respondents also noted that their perceptions of their service provider would improve if correspondence was able to draw on matters relating to their account – underlining the importance of listening and responding to customers and addressing their needs.

Following the research, John McGee, COO and President of Thunderhead, said “Service providers need to reconnect with their customers, engaging them in two-way dialog, and ensuring communications are appropriately targeted and personalized. Service providers have a potential wealth of customer information at their fingertips that they could use to better engage account holders, increase advocacy and ultimately retain hard won existing customers, rather than inadvertently driving them into the hands of competitors with mass produced communications.

“While there’ will always be new customers to sign up, as consumers go from one provider to the next in search of a better service, savvy companies will be working hard both to retain their existing policy holders, as well as win new ones.”

The white papers are based on results from a survey of 6,000 UK customers and 6,000 US customers, carried out by YouGov in December 2010. Figures are weighed and representative of all adults (aged 18+).