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Videos will be the most stimulating type of content for consumers in 2021: Shefali Khalsa

Shrugging off the disruptions of the year gone by, businesses and agencies are looking for a strong revival in 2021. Over the next few weeks, Adgully – as part of our annual TRENDING NOW endeavour – will be presenting the strategies and views of a cross-section of industry leaders as they go about reclaiming lost time and market opportunities and build for a stronger future, armed with the lessons of 2020.

Shefali Khalsa, Head – Brand and Communications, SBI General Insurance, talks about how the pandemic has ushered in a ‘digital-first’ wave that drives all aspects of a customer’s insurance buying journey, thereby impacting the general insurance landscape

Outlook for 2021

The pandemic has ushered in a ‘digital-first’ wave that drives all aspects of a customer’s insurance buying journey, thereby impacting the general insurance landscape. While digital technology adoption was well underway for most insurers, the pandemic presented the real scope of digitisation. Digital transformation in the insurance industry is now focused on growth via innovation and new sources of customer data to enhance customer experience.

Refocusing attention on campaign platforms: As individuals turned to digital mediums, especially social media, for everything from entertainment to information, the BFSI sector looked at these platforms as ideal vehicles to keep communication open with all stakeholders. Thus, even traditionalists who had so far not considered social media campaigns witnessed the same benefits because of the reach of Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.

Focus on user-generated content (UGC): User-generated content has seen quite a spike. Going ahead, marketers will focus more on ideation and come up with creative and out of the box ideas that may include strategic alliances and partnerships, cross-brand promotions, influencer usage on social media platforms and celebrity outreach for different categories of customers.

Communication through innovative videos: With the increased usage of social media and other digital platforms, we have seen various video innovations. Also, smartphones and affordable internet connections have been a booster for video consumption. With this trend of enhanced video communication that is here to stay, video marketing will increase. We will create original content and attempt to make conversions through various types of video content such as shoppable videos, self-shot videos, home videos (using celebrities or employees), and chroma shot videos.

Great expectations

Rise in Video marketing trends: The usage of videos as communication has shot up in 2020 and is the fastest-growing digital channel for marketers and advertisers to invest in. The video content is not limited to TV now, and with lockdown, this tool’s multichannel nature has grown exponentially. Now, users consume video content on mobile, for bite-sized entertainment through Instagram live and reels, video-streaming apps have boosted this channel as well. We expect videos will be the most stimulating type of content for the consumer in 2021.

Insurance awareness through various channels: The year 2020 has made, or we can say forced, the business across the world to consider communication techniques that they had not considered earlier. It has certainly increased awareness about insurance especially about the importance of health insurance. Marketers from the industry will definitely take this opportunity to leverage the two. We have already initiated, newer and more digitalized ways to spread awareness about the necessity to have insurance, be it through simplified videos, blogs, training sessions, etc.

Key learnings from 2020

The year 2020 has taught all of us to be flexible, forward-looking, agile, and equipped with adaptable resources.

The year gone by has given a new perspective of ‘empathy-based marketing’. In fact, it has clearly laid a line between the sympathy Vs empathy in marketing communications. Which means, it’s not about putting yourself in the shoes of your customers, but think like a ‘customer’.

As marketers, we learned flexibility in quickly adapting campaign plans, right from creative to the dissemination with regard to unexpected events/ situations. With the digital shift, all digital marketing platforms had taken the glam and marketing budgets. Which eventually has shown increase in the revenues of these social media platforms ranging in 15-25%. However, speaking of the brighter side, this shift has brought many new features and evolution on these social media platforms.

And lastly, to stay with the core values of the brand during the time of crisis.

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