Does Customer Engagement Really Matter?

In the age of Amazon, Facebook and Twitter, customers have been conditioned to constantly demand more. More value, more convenience, more everything. And, today’s customer wants it all for less money.


In the age of Amazon, Facebook and Twitter, customers have been conditioned to constantly demand more. More value, more convenience, more everything. And, today’s customer wants it all for less money.

Part of the “new normal” is realizing that the expectation baseline has changed, and those product companies or solution providers who were simply meeting, and not exceeding, the baseline before are now targets for merger and acquisition (M&A) or in danger of potential insolvency. Providers of everyday products and services are under a full frontal assault, and innovation is required to just get to the baseline.

In addition to meeting (and exceeding) the expectation baseline, engagement is a critical piece of creating a positive customer experience. The upshot of engaging customers is that customers talk about experiences with brands endlessly on social media. If the engagement and experience are good, it’s basically free advertising. If the engagement and experience are bad, it can spell brand suicide. Social media channels aside, brands must expect that customers will discuss the good, the bad, and the ugly equally at BBQs and in emails to professional friends and colleagues.

In today’s real-time environment, where information is shared nearly instantaneously across channels and industries, the key is to not give customers a reason to share bad news. This is especially challenging for insurance organizations since the industry is already handicapped by a reputation for making money at the expense of others, of unfairly denying claims, and of homogenizing difficult personal experiences with generic products and risk pools.

This makes it even more important for insurers to double down on customer engagement and start treating policyholders as people, rather than a policy number. Creating transparency related to the processing and status of a claim, for example, keeps communication lines open and further builds trust in the insurer-policyholder relationship. Technology can help.

Using technology to help seek out and develop opportunities for engagement can increase customer loyalty as proactivity replaces reactivity in demonstrating customer care. Today, there are three top ways insurance organizations should be considering in an effort to improve customer engagement, including proactively planning customer communication, providing robust digital channels for self-service, and using analytics to gain insights and promote transparency as a way of getting to know customers better.

Planned Communication

First things first, insurers must proactively plan communication with customers. Insurers are notorious for letting the monthly bill lead the way into customer communication and engagement. Way to make a customer feel valued, right? Don’t let customers rot on the vine after getting them in the door. If not already in place, consider implementing a customer portal through which policyholders can indicate communication preferences, provide a texting opt-in and email address, and start sending out reminders of policy milestones. Keep the relationship on track!


In the age of Amazon, where everything is self-service and 24x7x365, working hard to create opportunities for actual customer engagement, may seem counterintuitive. But, when thinking about customer engagement as part of an overall customer experience package, self-service makes total sense. Customers today want the ability to manage insurance policies easily without having to call into a customer service center to do it. That means making as many processes available for self-service as possible, including printing insurance cards or dec pages, paying premiums, providing first notice of loss (FNOL), or even checking the status of a claim. And, all of those self-service processes must be executable on a smartphone, tablet, or desktop.

Customer Intelligence

Using analytics integrated with an existing core administration system or implemented as part of a digital transformation initiative can help identify trends within a specific customer segment or opportunities for cross-sell and upsell. Analytics has the potential to make a significant difference in creating customer engagement because customers who feel “seen” and understood by an insurance provider are more willing to invest in a relationship which goes beyond a simple transaction. These kinds of insights are important because even when transactions are conducted efficiently, if the interactions are not transparent, personalized, and targeted, the value of the engagement is lost.


Insurance companies already have the data necessary to inform a meaningful, modern customer experience. Using technology to tap into it can mean the difference between success and losing customers to other companies that can provide modern online tools to engage with customers. There isn’t time to wait for the core system to “catch up.” Insurers have to take control of the experience with mobile-first, and omni-channel enabled technology platforms.

The path to good customer experience is through engagement. Does customer engagement really matter in the age of Amazon? Absolutely, even more than ever. Customer experience and customer engagement go hand-in-hand. One doesn’t exist without the other. Plus, if an insurer can gain a customer’s loyalty, and encourage the sharing of positive experiences with others, customer acquisition cost decreases dramatically.

Steve Johnson is the co-founder and head of product at He can be reached for further information or comment via email at

February 21st, 2023Steve Johnsoninsured.iosteve@insured.io916-812-7329