At Tata AIA, we are driven by our core value of Consumer Obsession: Girish Kalra
The insurance industry in India has undergone a sea-change in the last two years. The industry has witnessed major shift in the customer perception, and life insurance is now being perceived as a necessity to safeguard the family and loved ones from the unforeseen circumstances. The insurers believe that the momentum will continue in the coming years as COVID has created enough awareness among common people and they now realise the importance of insurance.
Considering the evolving needs of the customers, Tata AIA Life Insurance (Tata AIA), one of India’s leading life insurance companies, has launched its new brand positioning theme, “Har Waqt Ke Liye Taiyaar”. The new theme highlights its focus on partnering with their consumers through diverse solutions and enabling them to lead a ‘fikar-free’ life. The new positioning expands the brand’s focus on protection, effectively conveyed by the earlier theme of ‘Rakshakaran Ki Reet’.
In conversation with Adgully, Girish Kalra, Chief Marketing Officer, Tata AIA Life Insurance, speaks about the new brand positioning, along with specific strategies that Tata AIA is employing to cater to the changing mindset of consumers, the need for driving insurance awareness and penetration, future of insurance industry in India, and more.
Could you tell us more about Tata AIA Life Insurance’s new brand positioning – ‘Har Waqt Ke Liye Taiyaar’?
At Tata AIA Life Insurance, we are driven by our core value of Consumer Obsession. Over the last few years, we have offered distinct value to our consumers by being their pre-eminent protection provider. This is in line with our vision and clearly differentiates us in the minds of the consumers. Over the years, as consumer needs evolved, we have grown our product suite, enabling us to truly partner our consumers and empower them to fulfill their aspirations in life.
The new positioning resonates with this endeavour to offer innovative protection, wealth creation, health & wellness and retirement solutions, coupled with ‘best in class’ service. ‘Har Waqt Ke Liye Taiyaar’ truly symbolises this evolution of the Tata AIA brand. Further, it enables us to communicate our brand proposition in an inspiring, positive, and action-oriented manner. The Hinglish (transliterated in 7 languages) approach creates a connect with consumers across demographics and geographies (based on our extensive consumer survey). Most importantly, it assures our consumers that we have their back, as they aim to achieve the financial goals and aspirations of self and loved ones.
What inspired this change in focus?
It’s a conscious evolution of our brand, where we want to partner our consumers and enable them to live a fikar-free Iife. Today’s consumers want to achieve more in life, and navigate seamlessly across any obstacles that come in the way. This behaviour cuts across age groups and geographies – the new Indian is aspiring, dreaming big and committed to fulfill his/ her aspirations.
As a brand, we are well equipped to support our consumers and help them meet their aspirations. Today, we offer diverse consumer centric solutions across protection (traditional & investment linked), wealth creation, guaranteed income, health & wellness and retirement. Further, we have enhanced our service proposition and redefined our service principles to provide best in class experience to consumers. Hence, it was logical for us to create a new brand messaging that effectively communicates to our consumers that we are more than taiyaar to enable them to live a fikar-free life.
How does this new theme, ‘Har Waqt Ke Liye Taiyaar’, reflect Tata AIA’s commitment to its customers?
The new theme is completely focused on partnering our consumers and empowering them to live a fulfilling and fikar-free life. It’s our commitment to our consumers that they are and will always be our top-most priority.
With the shift in customer perception towards life insurance as a necessity, what specific strategies is Tata AIA employing to cater to this changing mindset?
At Tata AIA, we proactively conduct regular research and look at consumer inputs to understand changing trends. One of the key shifts that we have identified is that consumers, across all age groups, have high aspirations today. They wish to achieve a lot in life and do not believe in succumbing to constraints. Further, they are willing to plan ahead and be ready for all opportunities that life has to offer. Life insurance communications traditionally has been more about securing against unseen situations/ eventualities.
Our new positioning, ‘Har Waqt Ke Liye Taiyaar’, clearly acknowledges this new trend and aims at inspiring the consumers positively and enabling them to meet their aspirations and goals and live life to fullest. As mentioned earlier, our diverse solutions are aimed at empowering our consumers to fulfill their aspirations – be it financial security, purchasing their dream house/ car/ international vacation or looking forward to a healthy lifestyle, or for that matter a golden retirement.
The COVID-19 pandemic played a significant role in increasing awareness about the importance of insurance. How has this awareness affected the insurance industry in India, and what trends have emerged as a result?
The pandemic was an eye opener for us all – as a consumer or as a brand. Insurance as a topic was not spoken about much – be it health or term or savings/ retirement. The mindset that one is too young/ too healthy to buy life insurance often made consumers procrastinate buying insurance, leading to higher premiums at a later stage. However, post the pandemic, the social and economic cost of being uninsured/ under-insured came to the fore. Consumers realised that unseen medical costs and lack of financial security could lead to major financial crisis in the absence of earning members or inadequate savings. Through our consumer’s behaviour a few specific trends that we observed:
Faster adoption of Digital platforms and the increasing demand for the same. Consumers want to see e-commerce-based approach across all industries. They may end up purchasing online or offline, however, they want to explore and understand the brand’s proposition through easy to access information or platforms.
Despite constraints, consumers aspire for higher goals and are looking forward to brands that can partner them in the journey.
Consumer needs are evolving. Today, it is not just about financial security of loved ones. Consumers aspire for multiple things across their life stages. On the other hand, awareness for life insurance may be high, however intent to purchase is still low, as evident from recent research studies as well. Accordingly, we need to highlight solutions like guaranteed solutions, health & wellness and retirement plans that are important to fulfil future aspirations. Tata AIA’s new brand messaging is focused on this aspect to communicate the gamut of solutions across term insurance, guaranteed income plans, Health & Wellness solutions, Retirement Plans, etc.
Could you elaborate on Tata AIA’s approach to providing diverse solutions to its customers? What products and services are you offering to meet evolving customer needs?
Like I mentioned earlier, consumer behaviour and expectations are constantly evolving and are dynamic in nature. Also, as our economy grows, consumers’ aspirations towards a fuller and fulfilling life take centre stage. Convenient and simple products that provide Protection, Health & Wellness, Wealth Creation and Stable Income are some key asks of consumers, and we at Tata AIA have endeavoured to innovate and introduce solutions:
- Investment Linked, 3-in-1 insurance solution that provides Protection, Health Benefits & Wealth Creation opportunities
- Pro-Fit, a health cum wealth plan that provides comprehensive coverage for one’s medical expenses and health & wellness benefits, while presenting an opportunity for wealth creation
- Vitality Wellness Program, a unique goal based solution that motivates consumers to stay healthy and fit while enjoying insurance premium discounts.
The previous theme, ‘Rakshakaran Ki Reet’, focused on protection. How does ‘Har Waqt Ke Liye Taiyaar’ expand on this focus? What role does technology play in Tata AIA’s efforts to provide policyholders with a seamless and convenient experience?
‘Rakshakaran ki Reet’ was introduced keeping in mind the company’s vision to be the pre-eminent leader in Protection. It enabled Tata AIA to clearly differentiate itself as a protection focused insurance brand. As the company has evolved and grown in size and stature, it has diversified in to multiple segments. For example, guaranteed income solutions and H&W to partner and fulfil the multitude of aspirations of today’s consumers. ‘Har Waqt Ke Liye Taiyaar’ becomes a logical evolution in the brand’s positioning journey.
Technology is embedded in all aspects of the company’s initiatives and processes. Right from pre-purchase, consumer onboarding, servicing or claim settlement, we deploy new age digital-tech solutions to provide a delightful experience to consumers. For instance, approximately over 98% of our policies are issued in paperless form. Further, we have multiple options for consumers like MyDigi Account (consumer portal), WhatsApp Pay Service, TATA AIA App, Digital Kiosk at branches, etc., to enable our consumers to get their queries addressed or service their policy anytime, anywhere.
Considering these changing customer perceptions and needs, how do you see the insurance industry's future in India evolving?
Life insurance’s overall new business premium grew at a CAGR of 14% over the last 5 years (FY18-FY23). With a young aspiring population, growing need for diverse solutions across consumer segments and age groups, the future looks exciting for the industry. The need of the hour is to drive insurance awareness and penetration so that a larger set of consumers can avail the benefits. In fact, IRDAI, the Insurance Regulator, has been playing an enabling and proactive role here by introducing state level insurance awareness and penetration drive, creating conducive product approval processes and other consumer centric guidelines. With an enabling framework and proactive authority at the apex, the industry should see exciting times ahead.
Could you share any success stories or examples of how Tata AIA Life Insurance has positively impacted the lives of its customers through its products and services?
Though there are various examples, a recent one that truly touched us was the story of a Bangalore-based family, which runs a juice centre just outside one of our branches. This is the story of Mrs Manuja Gowda, a young mother whose Tata AIA policy helped rebuild her family after her husband’s sudden demise. Fortunately, he had purchased a term insurance policy. Unfortunately, during the pandemic, Mr Kempe Gowda lost his life due to COVID-19 complications. While the family struggled to come to terms with his loss, our Relationship Manager, when he heard of the loss, proactively approached the family and informed them about the insurance policy, which the family was not aware of. He helped them collate and present the right documents to complete the required claim formalities. While it is still difficult for Mrs Manuja to deal with the loss of her husband, she has rebuilt her life with confidence and has fulfilled Mr Kempe’s dream of buying their own home. She is taking care of her family with a steady source of income. At Tata AIA, we salute her courage and determination in continuing to fulfil her family’s aspirations.
In a rapidly changing market, what would be your advice to individuals or families looking to make informed decisions about their life insurance needs?
I would urge consumers to “Consider life insurance as your evergreen buddy, who will enable you to fulfil your goals and aspirations and live a fikar-free life. Ensure you seek advice from financial experts while choosing the right plan for you and your family and thereby, be Har Waqt Ke Liye Taiyaar.”