Guardian: Consumer attitude towards protection shifting

Ryan Fowler

July 1, 2020

Some 75% of advisers have said that there has been an increase in willingness by clients to talk about protection. 

Research from Guardian also found that 83% of advisers who ‘didn’t always talk about protection’ are now discussing it more frequently.

Additionally 38% have seen an uplift in protection enquiries from new clients whilst 67% think protection sales will grow as their firms seek to counter lost income.

Katya MacLean, Guardian CEO, said: “Coronavirus has changed so much of what we used to call normal. It’s made us pause for thought and realise what’s really important in life.

“So it’s not surprising that advisers are reporting an increase in client willingness to talk about the ‘what if’s’. Those advisers who didn’t always talk to their clients about protection say they’re now discussing it more frequently, and many are also experiencing a rise in proactive protection enquiries.

“We know that before the pandemic, some advisers found it hard to talk to their clients about their own mortality and morbidity.

“But, for the short term at least, we’re seeing a change in consumer appetite to have this tough, but necessary, conversation.

“This change, in these unprecedented circumstances, gives advisers an opportunity to show clients the benefit of their advice. Which, in turn, should help more people get the cover they need.”

Roy McLoughlin, associate director at Cavendish Ware,  said: “The virus has pushed protection insurance higher up the agenda for many clients. I am seeing this personally within my own business and am hearing the same during discussions at the Protection Distributors’ Group.

“It seems that in this challenging situation, people are thinking more about their own mortality. What is also welcome is that for the first time in my memory, a Chancellor of the Exchequer has mentioned protection in his speeches, bringing it to the attention of the masses.”

Mike Allison, head of protection at Paradigm, added: “The impact of coronavirus seems to have caused a shift in peoples’ risk appetites as well as awareness of the support available to them.

“At Paradigm, evidence suggests that more clients are taking the time to understand the nuances between protection products and take on board differences in quality between providers, an excellent reason for firms to offer a whole of market approach.

“Ultimately this is a good thing for the advice industry as this increased appetite to talk about risk helps us to better serve our customers.”

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