Growth Strategy Consulting with Safeco Insurance

Hispanic Market Identified as Attractive Target in Growth Strategy Consulting

Safeco Insurance (now owned by Liberty Mutual) had a vision to become the insurer of choice within the Hispanic community.  Overall objectives of the growth strategy consulting project were to:

  • Increase brand awareness among Hispanic consumers
  • Generate additional new auto policies
  • Generate cross sale products (renters and home insurance)
  • Assist in the recruitment, training and development of Spanish-speaking agents.

In this work, we agreed that executing tactical quick wins along with longer-range research to develop differentiated strategies would accelerate Safeco’s progress.  A “learn as we go” approach was chosen.

Growth Strategy Consulting with Safeco Insurance

6 Elements of Hispanic Growth Strategy Consulting Project for Safeco

During the growth strategy consulting project, we developed the following six-point plan:

  1. Consumer focus: Non-Safeco P&C customers of Hispanic origin, ages 25 – 54 who were bilingual or English preferred
  2. Geographic focus: ZIP code areas that have at least 25% Hispanic households and have active Safeco agents in place.  We determined Texas media was more cost effective compared to other options, so we focused on the San Antonio, TX market
  3. Current product: Focus on auto insurance as the initial product entry point and largest opportunity
  4. Channel: Market to and leverage independent agents.  Provide these agents with the relevant materials, e.g., bilingual collateral, point of sale materials, etc.
  5. Go-to-Market actions: Prove that, in key areas, Safeco is set up to do business in Spanish by supplying a quick reference guide to agent offices and body shops with Spanish language capabilities.  Create a website landing page to refer customers to local Hispanic agents and body shops with Spanish language capabilities
  6. New products: Develop new products that are relevant for these consumers

Research with Hispanic Consumers Revealed Weaknesses and Opportunities for Safeco

We developed twenty-two starting concepts for new products, against five starting benefit areas:

  1. Lifestyle
  2. easy to use or purchase
  3. convenient
  4. more affordable
  5. extended protection

These ideas were tested during in-depth phone interviews with Hispanic consumers in California and Texas who:

  • fit the consumer focus definition
  • were not currently Safeco consumers
  • were employed
  • were licensed and actively involved in auto insurance decisions.

The research found that the Safeco brand had low awareness among the target. More frequently mentioned brands were AAA, State Farm, 21st Century, Allstate, and Mercury.

Growth Strategy Consulting with Safeco Insurance

New Products Were Developed Tailored to Customer Needs

For these consumers, the most appealing ideas delivered against:

  • taking care of the family
  • superior coverage
  • savings and rewards

An example of “taking care of the family” was life insurance that was purchased along with the auto insurance for a few dollars more. This was a very focused policy that activated only if policyholder was killed in an auto accident.  An example of “superior coverage” was the ability through a rider to protect items that would normally not be protected by insurance, such as special paint, after-market accessories, or electronics. An example of a “savings and rewards” concept was a deductible credit, providing a 20% credit towards the deducible for every year the policyholder is accident free.   There were a number of additional highly-appealing items that went forward for further investigation.

Uncovered the Need for Culturally-Relevant Marketing Campaign

During the research, we also asked for feedback on Safeco’s general-audience marketing campaigns. Some of the images used were found to be less relevant to the Hispanic consumer.  For instance, the general market campaign used an egg chair, whereas a more resonant image might have been a rocking chair.  Working with a Hispanic agency was recommended to ensure cultural relevance.

Growth strategy consulting with Safeco allowed the company to pursue the Hispanic insurance market with confidence. If you have a growth strategy challenge to puzzle out, contact us.

Leave a comment