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Life Insurance Awareness Month: selling life insurance to millennials

By: Mike Dahlinger, Regional Sales Director, Michigan

Several months ago, I had the good fortune to present a webinar on how to talk benefits to millennials. And, now that Life Insurance Awareness Month is upon us, I thought it would be a great chance to review some of those concepts and see how they apply specifically to the life insurance market.

As a little background on the topic, Trustmark took part in research into what drives purchasing decisions and found several key drivers for millennials when it came to life insurance. To recap from the webinar1:
  • Millennials respond to emotional messaging more than facts and figures about their need for insurance. Specifically, millennials cited the following reasons for enrolling:
    • Peace of mind
    • A sense of responsibility
    • Value for the cost
Our findings also got into the importance of using multiple channels of communication to get the message to millennials. However, since that is more of a tactical factor, we can instead focus on some of the key reasons that millennials need life insurance and, using the messaging from our research, look at how to present those reasons in a way that will resonate.

“Life insurance is more affordable if you purchase when you are young”

I can tell you, for sure, that a bar chart or a table of numbers won’t help deliver this point. In many ways it stands on its own to check the box for “value for the cost”, but it’s also important to relate that buying young is the most responsible thing to do when purchasing life insurance. To help drive home this point, it needs to be conveyed to millennials that they can get coverage at the best rates in order to help achieve the security and peace of mind that they desire. 

“It’s a safety net for debt”

Debt is something millennials certainly understand. But don’t try and take a data driven approach to discuss how much debt millennials have and how life insurance can help to cover that debt. Instead, shape the messaging around the responsibility of not leaving debt for others or the peace of mind that they’ll be able to help cover any debts with their life insurance policy.

“You may not have a family…yet”

It’s true that we millennials are waiting longer to get married and have families, but that doesn’t mean that marriage, a house or kids can’t factor into our decision making. Discussing this point can help millennials make the emotional connection they need to see the value of a life insurance product. Just because a millennial doesn’t have a family, doesn’t mean this messaging won’t resonate with them as long as it’s couched from the position of protecting a family, not worrying about their financial security and taking care of their responsibilities.

The great thing about selling life insurance is that, in many ways, it sells itself. The points above may be well-known, but so often it’s not about what you’re saying, it’s about how you’re saying it. That’s why, to sell to millennials, it’s imperative to shape these key messages not around the facts and figures, but around their sense of responsibility and the emotional reasons for purchasing life insurance. I tell my peers all the time about the importance of life insurance and, hopefully, using some of these tactics can help you convince more millennials to see what an important role life insurance plays in their financial health.

1 Trustmark and Customer Benefits Analytics, “Who Buys Voluntary and Why: 2017 Enrollment Study.”

Posted on September 06, 2018 in Life Insurance Sales

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