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09:11 AM
Nathan Golia
Nathan Golia
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Allianz Life Gets on the Social Media Train With Videos

We've reported on how social media is becoming popular among life and annuities carriers in an attempt to broaden their policyholder bases. The ways companies look to start a conversation, however, aren't all the same.

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With the life insurance market lagging, carriers are turning to social media in increasing numbers to boost sales. Recently, AXA Equitable launched a social game, and MassMutual a Facebook campaign. Now, Allianz Life has joined the party, with a series of three videos that aim to "demystify" annuities.

The company encourages viewers to share the animated shorts, which are called Retirement Realities; Annuity Basics; and Annuity Myths and Truths, according to Allianz Life VP of consumer insights Katie Libbe.

"These videos are a simple way for people to connect with the topic, and the ability to easily share via social media makes them even more relevant," she told Insurance & Technology in an e-mail. "In fact, we launched our own YouTube page so people could access the videos in mediums other than just our consumer website and are also sharing via network groups like the ones on LinkedIn that are aligned around retirement income topics."

What's interesting about all these campaigns is that none of them are exactly the same. It's sometimes said that tough times lead to great innovations. We're seeing that play out in the life insurance sector now as companies take a single idea — a conversational approach — and apply it in different ways. AXA's game sets it apart from MassMutual and Allianz' videos. Yet, MassMutual's videos pull on emotional strings by using kids to appeal to parents, while Allianz' whimsical animation aims to teach without sounding professorial. For what it's worth, I much prefer this approach to the more fearful tactic of age simulation used by another Allianz division.

What's the ceiling for social media in terms of how it can help life insurance? Feel free to e-mail, tweet or comment with your thoughts.

Nathan Golia is senior editor of Insurance & Technology. He joined the publication in 2010 as associate editor and covers all aspects of the nexus between insurance and information technology, including mobility, distribution, core systems, customer interaction, and risk ... View Full Bio

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