Advisers faced with clients who fall into the millennial age group may, at one time, have had a limited range of protection products to offer them.
As Tom Conner, director at Drewberry Insurance remarks, the protection market could be accused of not really adapting to help younger people, with the technology a long way behind other markets.
In the past few years, the protection industry has been trying harder to widen its offering to include products and services which appeal more to millennials though.
After all, the needs of many clients, not just millennials, are changing beyond the basic, traditional critical illness, life insurance and income protection products.
Wellbeing and lifestyle needs
Craig Brown, director, intermediary at Legal & General, recalls: “Historically, clients looked for security which came from a provider’s heritage and history. However, nowadays this seems less important for younger generations, who are much more influenced by brand image and technology.”
One of the reasons for a change in the way protection is marketed to younger people is their attitude to health and lifestyle.
Mark Cracknell, head of protection distribution at Aviva, suggests millennials are more aware of their own wellbeing than any other segment of the population.
“Therefore, I think what we need to do is we need to bring together that whole awareness of wellbeing, together with insurance and the benefits that insurance can deliver,” he suggests.
“Yes, they’re going to live longer, potentially, but they will have some form of critical illness. What we have to do is show that segment of the population the reason why they should purchase these products.”
Mr Cracknell notes very often millennials will still go through an adviser, particularly a mortgage adviser as their first port of call when buying a new home.
“So we have to be able to provide those mortgage advisers with a proposition that appeals to those customers,” he adds.
For Aviva, this has meant evolving its critical illness proposition to incorporate elements of health insurance and general insurance, creating one proposition which a customer can purchase through an adviser.
More is being done. Mr Cracknell also reveals a new campaign from Aviva, which should help those millennials who are not at the stage of applying for a mortgage, and who may be missing out on receiving protection advice.
He explains: “We’re launching a campaign in the intermediary market [in January] on the opportunities for advice to people who are renting… to try and help and support advisers to open up conversations with customers to say, yes, you are renting and this may be a long-term solution for you but don’t forget you still have insurance needs.”
Mr Brown suggests the protection market has seen greater product innovation, with providers offering additional benefits to their offerings, such as rehabilitation services, making the policies more interactive and practical in helping people recover and return to work as soon as possible.