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Product providers back campaign for protection

Protection product providers need to get together for an impartial campaign to promote the need for protection in UK society, according to a group of industry experts.

A Money Marketing protection round table last week found overwhelming support for a consolidated campaign but the logistics of competitors coming together will be difficult to overcome.

Association of British Insurers policy adviser (health and protection) Vicki Bolton said the success of the Government and Milk Marketing Board ads “Milk’s gotta lotta bottle” and “Got milk?” could be used as models of effective promotion but she said it was not the role of the ABI to provide the funding for such a campaign.

Bolton said: “There could be an industry campaign – a generic campaign – to promote protection products although it would be difficult logistically. But a generic advert like the Milk Marketing Board’s ads would work brilliantly.”

Royal Liver IFA market manager Andy Milburn said: “Who is responsible for marketing the industry? Unfortunately, we are happy with getting away with doing the minimum. We need a real opportunity to look at the market, talk to the customers and IFAs and promote the industry.”

Lifesearch managing director Tom Baigrie and Bright Grey products director Roger Edwards both agreed that a campaign would raise the profile of protection but the industry must first overcome the issue of trust in the public’s eye.

One way of gaining public trust was to publish claim statistics, which a number of providers already provide.

But Legal & General senior operations manager Stuart Johnson expressed concerns that the media will use claim statistics to create an unsophisticated league table of prov-iders based on these figures.

L&G does not provide claim statistics and the campaign undertaken by Lifesearch to make the collation of statistics more widespread has not been supported by the ABI.

Baigrie said: “To not publish statistics is defeatist. The public will only come to trust you when the industry puts its money where its reputation isn’t.”

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