Price Isn't Everything

Felix Thomson

Content Executive

The Financial Services Forum

In commoditised markets like general insurance and personal loans selling purely on price is inevitably limited. Ian French argues that these products must have relevance to the consumer’s needs. Direct marketing can deliver the right product to the right target market.
The advertising of commoditised financial services such as general insurance, personal loans, credit cards etc., is a difficult business. It is characterised by countless undifferentiated brands banging out the same pricebased consumer propositions and the only way to get cut through in the market is to shout louder than the competition. The problem is that this struggle for increased share of voice only leads to more clutter in the market, more noise.
So when financial services providers are all shouting the same thing at the consumer in differing volumes and pitches, how are potential customers supposed to hear any single provider clearly? And if they can’t differentiate between the voices, how can they really know who’s saying what?
In days of yore, consumers had less choice. They would take a personal loan and credit card from their bank or go to a broker for their insurance needs. The emergence of direct insurance providers and banking
deregulation delivered a consumer revolution. The customer was in control – they could choose a provider that offered a better deal. In short they had the opportunity to save money.
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