Ubaid Zargar

Here is how Niva Bupa aims to disrupt the health insurance category

The brand’s CMO shares insights on the insurance category and the factors that determine the high rates of underinsured consumers. Read more.

In March, health insurance company Niva Bupa unveiled its ‘Ye to Mujhe Bhi Chahiye’ campaign aimed at insured consumers and those looking for it. Through the campaign, the brand brought to light a key roadblock in consumers subscribing to health insurance - wastage of unclaimed premiums. 

The campaign featured three ad films, each of which doubled down on the concept of ‘Carry Forward’ premiums. The offerings, packaged in ‘Reassured 2.0’ plan, provided customers with the ability to yield premiums even after not claiming it.

The brand’s executive vice president & CMO, Nimish Agarwal, says that the campaign was founded upon consumer research that assessed the reasons for people aware of health insurance not subscribing to it. He says, “The penetration of the category is roughly 3.5-4 per cent. Through our consumer research, we discovered that younger cohorts think that health insurance is an expense that they’ll be invested in every year.”

The gratification in health insurance is often delayed, and consumers can only yield the benefits of the policy when they claim it. With how the industry is shaped up, the benefits of the policy are lost with renewals. 

“A lot of the youngsters are interested in SIP (systematic investment plan) mutual funds, because they understand the concept of compounding. But there is no compounding in health insurance, devoid of any tangible output.”

The brand is therefore trying to create an empirical benefit for the potential customers. “As Indians, we want to see our money put to use. It isn’t easy to see thousands of rupees going to waste.”

The campaign puts a very light and humorous spin on an otherwise complex category. For a lot of the consumers, BFSI is an unexplored category requiring a lot of research. Agarwal points out that this is also the insight the campaign is conceptualised upon. 

“The category is very complex for consumers to understand. In the anxiety of covid, interested customers also realised that there isn’t a lot of relatable literature about the category in the market.”

The conventional communication of the category appeals to a consumer’s sentiment, mortality, and the ever-glooming risk of sickness. With its campaign, Niva Bupa is fixated on turning health insurance into a topic of daily discourse, minus the negativity that it is associated with. 

“In the films that we’ve shot, we’ve taken the route of making health insurance the part of our daily conversation. To be able to talk about health insurance inside a gym, a restaurant, or even a salon. The category is anyway filled with anxiety, we want it to be as relatable as possible, so it doesn’t become a conversation that requires a lot of prior knowledge.”

Speaking on the media mix for the campaign, Agarwal reveals that the brand has moved its ad spends more towards digital. “Our current split of ad money is 70-30, where seventy percent of our ad money is distributed towards digital. It gives a more nuanced way of reaching out to potential customers.”

The brand also participated in IPL advertising this year, with the campaign. For the tournament, Niva Bupa adopted a CTV strategy to reach out to its target group. “During the IPL, we chose to take up the Jio Connected TVs (CTVs). A lot of working youngsters today (25 and above) have a connected smart tv. We wanted to reach out to those cohorts.”

In India, there are cities and places where the awareness, and adoption of health insurance stand above the rest of the country. A lot of the remote and suburban corners of the nation are still trying to wrap their heads around the benefits, and utility of health insurance. This calls for a very targeted expansion strategy, solidified with effective communication, as per Agarwal. 

“Penetration of health insurance in a place like Gurugram is roughly 35 percent, compared to the overall percentile of the country of an estimated 3.5 percent. In metros, where there is group insurance, the penetration seems to be higher. In terms of our expansion, we are increasing our office footprint in tier 2 and tier 3 cities.”

The push to increase the office count is to accommodate the growing awareness among the customers, which also generates a lot of questions and queries.

Have news to share? Write to us atnewsteam@afaqs.com