Best of ITC 2021: Recap of InsureTech Connect 2021 Conference

Written by Team Optimity

(5 min read)

Best of ITC 2021: Top highlights and most talked about topics of InsureTech Connect 2021

This was the first InsureTech Connect Conference in two years, and with over 6,000 attendees in person, and another 1,000 virtual attendees and they did not disappoint! In addition to being one of the most attended and engaged conferences to date, this was also one of the most informative and trend-centric conferences with dozens of panel discussions throughout the three days.

As one of the key sponsors of the event and host of the panel discussion: Building a Healthy Relationship With Modern Consumer: Deliver Value & Evolve With Digital Engagement, we had a front-row seat to all the important topics and trends discussed at the conference and we are excited to share them with you!  

1. Personalized Engagement

Customer engagement has always been part of the insurtech conversation, but what set this year’s trend apart is the focus on personalized engagement. Thanks to their experiences with eCommerce brands like Amazon, consumers have a much higher standard and expectation for digital engagement from their insurance providers. They are looking for products and services catered to their needs. 

The majority, 60 – 70%,  of leading companies such as Salesforce, ServiceNow, Sureify, and of course Optimity, had their main focus as consumer engagement and personalized products and services.

2. Data Insights

Similar to engagement, data has been discussed at almost every other conference to date, but this year the focus was on actionable data. There were noticeably more vendors where their sole focus was on providing data to insurance carriers across several areas including underwriting, claims, distribution, and service.

Carriers have also become much more reliant on data for driving key decisions – specifically around risk management.

Tech companies are developing deeper layers of data around genetics, behaviors, and predictive health habits to ultimately help carriers improve their risk management processes and results.

3. Speed to Market

The insurance industry is not immune to disruptive tech, and many incumbent carriers are dealing (or rather competing) with an onslaught of new and emerging carriers in the market. These new entrants bring with them innovative tech and are not slowed down by legacy tech like many of the traditional carriers. 

To help the large carriers fill in this tech, and increase the speed to market, we saw a growing number of creative companies, such as HavenTech are there to fill in the gap and help the traditional companies with digital distribution, improved underwriting and claims, and to streamline customer service and enhance their customer engagement.  

Speed to market has also spurred more collaboration among competitive carriers who leverage each others’ tech capabilities in an effort to gain mutually beneficial goals, which will ultimately benefit the customer. 

4. Frictionless Solutions

Making the entire insurance value chain was a key topic at this year’s InsureTech conference Simply stated insurance companies are looking for ways to make it very easy for consumers to apply, make purchasing decisions, and make claims all in an effort to meet the new expectations of consumers. 

The old adage that insurance is bought, not sold, still rings true, and the importance of consumer engagement and buy-in is still top of mind for the carriers. A critical part of that engagement is the human interactions between consumers and representatives of the carriers — agents and client service representatives, — who will continue to be key components of the customer journey. 

Another key trend discussed was that millennials are becoming a larger customer segment. This new customer base is expecting their insurance sales and onboarding experience to be as seamless and frictionless as their other digital purchasing experiences. 

According to a recent Forrester’s report, incumbents are making key investments in these areas:

  • 54% investing in digital channels
  • 51% are improving online customer experience 
  • 32% are heavily invested in improving the value of customer engagements

5. Partnership Through Collaboration

The last noteworthy theme of this conference was the level of collaboration and partnership being discussed amongst the carriers. Companies are starting to realize that re-creating products, adjusting pricing, and spending more on advertising are no longer the only road to success. 

Like never before, the opportunity exists to work with other companies to strategically build on one another’s strengths in the market. 

Providing health and wealth together, rather than disparate offerings among companies. 

Collaboration, rather than competition was stated as the theme going forward. Some examples of these partnerships include:

  • Grail, Sureify, and Atidot to partner on new offerings
  • GIA, RGA, Munich Re, Swiss Re collaborating on improving the ecosystems.

For our part, we recently announced our new partnership with Health Gorilla in order to leverage our data and consumer engagement platforms to serve customers better. 

And with that, we wrap up our summary on the most talked-about highlights and trends at ITC 2021. 

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