Bharti AXA: Peaceful Recovery

By Satrajit Sen , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Digital | January 09, 2014
The general insurance brand guns for category awareness through its latest digital campaign.

Health is wealth goes the age old truism, but the wealth required to maintain that very health is quite a large sum in India. Enter the health insurance category - a bunch of brands that promise to manage the expenses required to treat ailments.

Jyothsna Pai

In a departure from category codes, Bharti AXA general insurance (GI) shifts focus from expensive ailments to well, the ailing. The insight the brand draws on is simple: Today, for most people, the concept of health insurance translates to 'something that covers hospital bills and other medical expenses'. While this is fine for an illness that can be cured in the short term, the brand draws attention to longer term illnesses that render one incapable of living a normal life and making good on one's daily responsibilities and financial commitments such as EMIs, children's school fees, credit card expenses, and the like. Add to that the burden of being too incapacitated to go to work and the consequent loss of pay.

Taking a cue from this reality, Bharti AXA's new digital campaign drives category awareness, underscores the importance of health insurance and promotes newer products like its Critical Illness Health Insurance Policy, which provides consumers lump sum compensation when severely ill, allowing them to recover in peace.

The campaign is hinged on an online video campaign, the theme of which is 'Lifestyle Protection' or LSP. Conceptualised by Publicis iStrat, the digital campaign comprises seven videos. Clearly crafted to bear shock value, the films show people going about their daily work routine, garbed in a green hospital gown and with an intravenous drip attached to their bodies. A visual hyperbole, the actors embody people who are forced to work even when ill, due to their financial commitments.
The protagonists represent people from different streams of society including both salaried employees as well as entrepreneurs. The idea is to convey, in a disruptive manner, how critical illness could hit absolutely any one of us.

Jyothsna Pai, VP, marketing and corporate communication, Bharti AXA GI, tells afaqs! the objective is to spread awareness about the health insurance category and to make people realise that it is one of the must-haves, at par with life insurance and vehicle insurance.

Pai explains, "Health Insurance penetration at sub 15 percent in the country reveals the acute lack of awareness about the importance of health insurance in India. And even the minority that does have some form of health insurance is not completely aware of the options available. They end up buying a policy that may or may not suit them, as they don't have adequate knowledge about the product they are buying. With this campaign, we intended to convey the importance of the category in a light-hearted manner."

The campaign is a mix of candid videos and scripted videos. The candid videos are shot in public spaces (roadside, café) and capture the genuine reactions of onlookers when they are exposed to the actor dressed like a patient. They perceive the actor as someone who is actually going to work despite being critically ill. The scripted videos are shot like regular ad films; all the people in these films are actors following a script.

Pai tells us, these videos are made for the internet and won't be aired on TV. They are being promoted on Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn, among several other relevant portals. Allied activities (like online contests) are underway.

Why was digital chosen as the sole platform for these films? To grab the attention of young professionals on a daily basis and to promote the brand's newly launched e-commerce enabled website, shares Pai.

The company has also launched a 'working patient journal' aptly titled 'Patient Times', a forum that carries updates on patients, who are seen working or are spotted at unusual places. The page also has informative content for patients, including that of the 'dos and don'ts' variety.

Recall that the company's latest TV campaign, based on the same theme, was launched a month or so back.

At a global level, insurance penetration in India is pretty low. A KPMG-Assocham report shows that while insurance penetration (both life and non-life) for FY12 in the UK and France stood at 11.3 per cent and 8.9 per cent respectively, it was merely four per cent in India.

The report also points out that a vast chunk of the Indian population does not have any health insurance or other medical cover, despite numerous discussions around the issue of universal cover policies at the government level.

Bharti AXA GI, as a stakeholder in the industry, is gunning for category growth and penetration in the country. "Our priority this year is to push our health insurance products and build a healthy and educated consumer base for the category of insurance in the country," declares Pai.

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