In recent years there has been a lot of focus on the ways in which life insurance companies may be able to do more to connect with people. One of the ways in which a lot of companies might be able to adapt to current consumer preferences - which many insurers are now adopting - is by rolling wellness incentives into traditional life policies.
For years now, many Americans have likely seen their employer-sponsored health insurance coverage add wellness incentive programs as a means of helping them stay healthier. Now it seems life insurance issuers are getting into the same boat, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal. One major insurer recently launched such a plan that would allow people to reduce their premiums by as much as 10 percent and even rack up additional rewards for doing some simple things related to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
That includes getting physical exams every year, regularly working out, losing weight, getting flu shots, and even taking health courses, the report said. However, each person's goals will be personalized to help them meet their own individual needs, and they'll be able to track and report their progress online.
Why is this happening?
The reason that life insurers are broadening their offerings in this way is two-fold, the report said. First is the obvious consideration that life insurance sales have slowed down in the last several years. In fact, the number of sales seen in the industry is down 45 percent over the last 20 years or so - as only about 1 in 5 households currently have such coverage. Consequently, the more life insurers can do to shake things up, the better off they might be going forward.
But second, it's important to note that a healthier population is in life insurers' best interests as well. Not having to pay as many death benefits thanks to people living healthy, and simultaneously providing incentive for more people to take on these policies by reducing their costs. This extra incentive could be positive for both the insurer and the insured.
The more life companies can do to shake off the cobwebs of the old ways of doing things, the better off they might be in terms of being able to grow and succeed in the future.