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Glad to be Bright Grey

The protection market is increasing. More policies are being sold. People expect their insurance to be uninspired and laboured because that means it is safe, reliable and trustworthy – right?

Not according to consumers. Despite the growth, there is still a protection gap in the UK. The vast majority of the UK&#39s population do not have adequate or even nearly adequate protection cover. Fifty-one per cent still do not have any form of protection cover. Why is that and how can providers help IFAs to seize this opportunity?

Consumers say they are confused about what products are available, they do not trust the providers to pay out when they need it, the language is jargon-ridden and complex and the service they experience is, at best, tolerable, and at worst, stressful.

This does not paint a picture of an industry which is appealing to consumers so how can we change this?

We must be different. Think about how lifestyles have shifted over the last century. We are all living longer, to better standards and earning more. Medical advances mean we can survive illnesses that, until even 10 years ago, would have proved fatal.

The public are aware of what would happen to their lifestyles and finances if they became ill or an income-earner died.

They understand the need but the benefit is clouded by small print and jargon which they feel is used by providers to avoid paying claims. In many cases, they are scared off by confusingly structured, inflexible products which they do not understand.

The market needs to inspire confidence that claims will be paid, that consumers will be treated as honest and in an efficient and caring way. Consumers do not believe they are treated in this way and before many of them will be persuaded to buy protection, they want evidence of a new approach.

Rather than embracing this opportunity to grow the protection market, product providers appear resistant, preferring instead to believe they already meet consumer needs and provide the best service to IFAs.

Protection is about feeling secure. How secure would any of us feel if the stability of our income was handled by a complete stranger, speaking in a seemingly strange code and making little attempt to build trust.

With a fresh, consumer-first approach that meets &#39 needs, the protection market can effectively double in size, both in terms of motivating new consumers and growing the sector which already has some protection.

Focusing on the consumer does not mean a loss of focus on the IFA.

Arming IFAs with clear, compelling customer-driven services and products backed by clear, understandable communications and first-class support services to help their own admin will help the IFA build a deeper and more valuable long-term relationship with their clients.

It comes down to getting the basics right, being efficient and helping IFAs.

We have to hear what consumers are saying. We must deliver and be different.

Bright Grey will be different. The name itself says this company is different.

The consumer&#39s experience of the protection industry is grey – grey language, grey process and grey products. They come to us at grey moments in their lives.

We hope to brighten up the experience by providing clarity and vibrancy. We will think and act brightly on the consumers&#39 behalf and always treat them with care. This is a passion not a statement. We are being honest about the industry, and how, in our own way, we hope to change it.

There is huge potential in the market that will not be realised until this process of change is begun. Change that is driven by the needs of the consumer. Is the market willing or able to react to what consumers want?

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