April 16, 2024

13 Ways to Lower Insurance Customer Acquisition Costs

Insurance Customer Acquisition Costs

How exactly can insurance businesses reduce their customer acquisition costs? This question is particularly relevant in an industry, which is notorious for its high acquisition costs. This is hardly unexpected. The nature of insurance products makes customers reluctant to have the necessary but difficult discussions regarding them.

Meanwhile, insurers still need to cut acquisition costs just like any other business if they are to thrive. So how can you achieve this in one of the most tricky markets to navigate?

We’ll explore several proven strategies for reducing insurance customer acquisition costs (CAC). I’ll also provide a basis for you to understand its causes, risks, and how to gain a competitive advantage.



Key Takeaways

  • Identifying your target audience and refining marketing strategies reduce customer acquisition costs and boost your bottom line.

  • Enhancing your digital presence through a user-friendly website and targeted online advertising converts potential customers more effectively.

  • Optimising your search engine presence and utilising SEM can attract relevant traffic and reduce paid advertising costs.

  • Social media marketing engages potential customers and promotes your insurance products at a lower cost than traditional advertising.

  • Marketing automation tools streamline and optimise marketing processes, helping nurture leads through customer acquisition funnel stages.

  • Analysing and optimising the sales process using data-driven insights reveals lead generation channels and improves conversion rates.

  • Providing sales training and support to your team can significantly improve conversion rates and reduce acquisition costs.

  • Partnerships and strategic alliances tap into existing customer bases and cross-promote your insurance offerings cost-effectively.

  • Referral marketing leverages the trust and influence of existing customers to acquire new ones at a lower cost.

  • Constantly monitoring and optimising your customer acquisition funnel is crucial to identify areas for improvement and adapt to changing customer acquisition trends.

Understanding Customer Acquisition Costs (CAC)

Your CAC includes all sales and marketing expenses you spend on attracting and converting potential leads into paying customers. Businesses use CAC as a crucial metric to assess the efficacy and efficiency of their customer acquisition strategies.

How do you calculate customer acquisition costs?

The total acquisition cost includes advertising and marketing costs—pay-per-click ads, social media ads, digital ads, etc. It also includes sales team commissions and salaries, software or technology costs, and lead generation costs. And finally, any other expenditures directly related to acquiring new customers.

Formula for CAC

You can calculate CAC for a specific period by dividing sales and marketing expenses by acquired customers. The formula is:

Customer acquisition cost = Marketing and sales expenses                                                                      


                                                     Total number of acquired customers


Why is it Important for Insurance Businesses to Track and Reduce CAC?

You can boost profitability, expand your customer base, and outshine the competition by managing CAC. Here are some of the benefits of customer acquisition cost optimisation for insurers:

1) Boost profitability

Reducing customer acquisition costs directly impacts your bottom line. By lowering the expenses associated with acquiring new customers, you can increase the value of each policy sold. This is particularly important in the insurance industry, where the lifetime value of a customer is significant. By optimising your acquisition strategies and minimising costs, you can achieve your financial goals more effectively.

2) Maintain competitive pricing

Being a highly competitive sector, customers make informed decisions by comparing offerings and prices before choosing an insurer.

By lowering your customer acquisition costs, you can offer more competitive rates on your insurance products and services. This makes your value proposition more appealing to potential customers. 

When you have competitive pricing, you can increase your market share and influence customer's purchase decisions. As a result, you'll be able to maintain your position as one of the top insurers in the industry.


3) Customer retention 

Sure, customer acquisition is crucial for growth, but retention is the key to sustained growth for insurers. Cutting your CAC frees up resources, which you can allocate to customer retention initiatives. These initiatives could be anything from loyalty programmes to personalised services that increase customer loyalty and reduce customer churn. This leads to meaningful customer relationships and higher lifetime value.

4) Higher return on investment (ROI)

Reducing CAC by targeting the right customer segments and improving your marketing strategies attracts more qualified leads. When you have better leads, you're more likely to convert them into customers. This means you'll generate a higher return on investment (ROI) from your marketing efforts.

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Trends in the Insurance Industry

Customer acquisition marketing continues to influence the insurance market for small businesses and established ones

...with insurance CAC eclipsing other sectors. Benchmarks have revealed that it could cost 7 - 9 times more for insurers to acquire a new client than to retain one.

Why does it cost so much to acquire new customers?

Several factors influence the cost of customer acquisition for insurance businesses:

1) The slow rate of digitisation

As of 2020, less than 30% of leading global insurers had digitised the value chain

Furthermore, 13% hadn’t integrated digital technologies into their business processes. Compared to other industries, this is a prolonged adoption rate.

Using traditional advertising and marketing methods can be expensive. You often need to spend a lot of money to compete with other insurers. This approach isn't always sustainable or cost-effective in the long run.

2) Rising competition

Insurers often have to incur huge financial losses, i.e., offer discounted premiums, to attract new customers. This situation only worsens as the market becomes more saturated, putting more pressure on the CAC as competition increases.

3) Competitive job market

The insurance job market also has its fair share of competition. It can be tricky to find talented salespeople, and training and retaining them is also costly. The time and resources required to achieve this often pose a serious challenge for insurers.

Insurers also need to build trust, maintain brand awareness, and comply with industry regulations. It's easy to see why the cost of acquiring new customers is so high.

Visit our blog for more on insurance trends.

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Acquisition Costs in Insurance Sub-Sectors Compared with Other Industries

CAC will vary depending on the industry and often between insurance sub-sectors as well. Nevertheless, it’s still important to manage the cost. Especially if you consider that the average net margin for profit is between 3% - 8%.

Let's compare and contrast customer acquisition costs in insurance sub-sectors and against other industries:

Insurance sub-sectors:

Life insurance: 

Customer acquisition costs for life insurance tend to be higher than in other sub-sectors. This is because life insurance policies typically require a longer sales cycle. And so does building a high level of trust with customers and hyper-personalising consultations.

Property and casualty (P&C) insurance: 

This type of insurance, including liability, auto, and home insurance, usually has lower acquisition costs than life insurance. That's because of the shorter sales cycle and standardised nature of the insurance products involved.

Comparison with other industries:


Acquisition costs can be high in the tech industry because of fierce competition and rapid innovation. Tech businesses will often invest in advertising, digital marketing, and brand partnerships to acquire customers. Especially a SaaS company (software-as-a-service) or subscription-based business.


Retail businesses also struggle with high CAC, especially e-commerce businesses. Retailers will invest in several marketing channels to attract new clients. Popular channels include online ads, SEO, and social media marketing. The costs can vary depending on the product category, competition, and target market.

Financial services:

CAC can be quite substantial in financial services businesses like banks and credit card companies. For these businesses, acquiring customers often means launching complex marketing campaigns or providing sign-up bonuses and promotional offers. The need to build trust, meet regulatory demands, and win customer loyalty drives up costs.


Subscription-based services:

Subscription-based businesses like streaming sites, gyms, or meal kit providers also need to work hard to get customers. They rely on referral programmes, marketing campaigns, and free trials to get new business. Costs will vary based on the competition, target market, and industry.

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13 Crucial Techniques for Reducing Customer Acquisition Costs for Insurance Businesses

Here are some ideas to help reduce your CAC in the insurance industry.

1. Identify target audience and refine marketing strategies

Reducing CAC in the insurance industry is possible. But you must identify your target audience and refine the strategies you use to reach them. 

Demographic, behavioural, and preference-based audience segmentation

Conduct market research to better understand your target audience and tailor your offerings to suit them. Consider things like location, income, age, employment, and interests. To get your message in front of the right people, you must first identify who you're trying to reach.

Customising marketing messages and channels to effectively reach the target audience

71% of consumers expect personalised experiences. Use resources like data and technology to personalise your marketing messaging. Leverage personalisation in email or digital experiences by including customer information like name, location, and details from previous interactions. 

Leveraging data analytics and market research to refine marketing strategies

Analyse customer data and focus on those high-value clients generating high revenue and lifetime value. Targeted marketing strategies can also attract and retain high-value clients. By targeting the most profitable leads, you increase your marketing ROI and reduce your acquisition costs.



2. Partnerships and forming strategic alliances

These sorts of collaborative efforts allow you to tap into the existing customer bases of your brand partners. They help you to reach more people who might be interested in your insurance offerings. You can do this by forming partnerships with related businesses like banks, trade groups, and tech providers. Leveraging the credibility and reputation of your partners significantly boosts profits and reduces your CAC.

Over 54% of companies agree that partnerships contribute 20% of their total revenue. 

You benefit from the existing relationship that these businesses have with their satisfied customers. Such referrals provide qualified leads and boost conversion rates, eliminating the need for costly prospecting efforts.

Cross-promotion and other forms of joint advertising are possible with strategic partnerships. Increase your marketing reach by working together on campaigns or events. You both reach a wider audience by leveraging each other's marketing channels. When businesses work together to promote one another, they can reach more people at a lower cost than if they worked alone.

Explore the possibility of cross-selling with your brand partners. Consider cross-selling or bundling your insurance products with your partner's if they provide value to the customer. A bank, for instance, can advertise your insurance offerings to its customers, and vice versa. You tap into each other’s distribution channels and existing customer bases to find and attract new business.

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Leveraging the network and resources of strategic alliances for cost-effective customer acquisition

Strategic partnerships open the door to information exchange and new ideas. Working with other companies that specialise in fields like technology or data analytics might help you improve. This saves time and energy and brings in more customers by streamlining your operations.

57% of businesses use partnerships to attract new customers.

Partnerships allow you to pool your resources, knowledge, and skills to attract customers at a lower cost. You achieve this by combining resources for marketing expenditures, lead generation, and campaign creation. 



3. Referral marketing

Effective referral marketing significantly reduces CAC. The idea is to leverage happy customers as a source of referrals for new business.

This approach can be a game-changer considering that 92% of consumers trust referrals made by friends and family.

Here are some strategies to successfully implement referral marketing:

Create a referral programme with incentives 

You can reduce your CAC with a robust referral programme.

Providing a referral programme with rewards for participation encourages 50% of consumers
to refer a business.

Offer rewards to current policyholders who refer new customers. Rewards can be sign-up bonuses, cash, gift cards, or loyalty points. Customers are more likely to spread the word about your business when they earn rewards for doing so.


Promote referral programme

Spread the word about your referral programme through several channels. Some examples are email blasts, social media updates, website banners, and app alerts.

Inform your repeat customers about the benefits to expect from the programme. And stress the importance of your insurance products. You can highlight the benefits of your products or services by sharing customer success stories or testimonials.


Track and reward referrals

Use a robust tracking system to record and assign referrals. Assigning referral codes or links to each referral source allows you to trace the source of new leads. Promptly reward customers who refer others once the referred person becomes a policyholder. This builds trust and keeps customers engaged in your referral programme.

Building trust and maintaining engagement requires being honest and consistent when monitoring and rewarding referrals.


2. Enhance your digital presence 

You can reach a larger audience by advertising online through PPC (pay-per-click ) and social media advertising. The advanced targeting features of digital advertising platforms allow you to optimise your campaigns and save money. You can also maximise ROI and reduce CAC by monitoring campaign performance and making improvements.


3. Build a user-friendly and responsive website

Create dedicated landing pages that effectively promote your insurance offerings and are easy for potential customers to navigate. And you should optimise it for search engines to drive organic traffic to your website. Use search engine optimisation (SEO), targeted keywords, and high-quality content to attract your ideal audience.

Speaking of SEO…



4. Optimise search engine presence and utilise search engine marketing (SEM)

Use SEO strategies to improve your site's ranking in organic search results. To find the right buzzwords for your website's titles, content, and meta tags, you need to conduct keyword research. A higher search engine ranking increases relevant traffic while reducing the need for paid advertising.

Display relevant ads next to search results using PPC tactics. Bid on the right keywords and write ads that attract attention. PPC ad platforms, such as Google Ads, let you control your spending down to the individual click. To control your advertising costs and get better leads, target specific keywords and demographics.



5. Social media marketing and targeted online advertising

Compared to more conventional customer acquisition methods, social media marketing promotes your business and attracts customers at minimal cost.

Promote your insurance products and interact with potential customers through Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. Create engaging social media profiles and share useful information. And always engage with followers by responding to their comments, questions, and posts.

Use targeted digital marketing techniques to appeal to certain customer segments. Advanced targeting based on interests, demographics, and behaviours can boost conversions. These features and more are available on platforms like Google Ads, LinkedIn Ads, and Facebook Ads. 

This technique focuses on leads who are already interested in your offerings and more likely to purchase your product. Targeting them through remarketing and retargeting advertising is a proven, cost-effective approach to increasing sales.


6. Use marketing automation tools to streamline and optimise marketing processes

Leverage marketing automation tools to nurture leads through the buyer's journey. Create automated email campaigns that provide personalised content and messages to leads. Email content will depend on their actions, interests, and where they are in the sales funnel. 

You can automate marketing tasks and processes to further streamline your marketing strategy. These tasks include lead scoring, data synchronisation, and social media posting.



7. Enhancing the efficiency of the sales funnel and removing bottlenecks

Review and improve the weak points or bottlenecks in your sales process. Streamline the process by removing redundancy and optimising the user experience. When you make it easy for potential customers to move through the buying process, you can lower your acquisition costs.



8. Implementing effective CRM systems to track and manage leads

A customer relationship management system can help you streamline lead management. You can monitor lead sources, record relevant information, and assign leads to salespeople or teams. This makes it less likely that leads will lose interest and increases your conversion rates.

Using a CRM system, you can see where your leads and deals are in the sales funnel at any given time. Email marketing platforms and lead-generation tools are just some of the marketing and sales tools that you can integrate with a CRM system. 

By reducing the need for manual data entry and enabling automatic updates, this integration improves efficiency and accuracy. Integrating CRM with other software boosts productivity and improves lead management and customer acquisition processes.


9. Providing sales training and support to improve conversion rates

Make sure your sales staff has thorough product training. They should be familiar with the insurance policies you provide, including their features, advantages, and usefulness for various customers. Your sales team needs to be able to clearly explain the benefits of your insurance products to potential customers. This helps increase your conversion rate.



10. Analysing and optimising the sales process through data-driven insights

To find the best lead sources, analyse data on where your leads come from and how well they perform. Focus on the channels that bring in the most high-quality leads. This will help you get better leads, increase conversions, and reduce acquisition costs. 

Regular customer acquisition funnel optimisation also helps identify and address bottlenecks. And that ensures that potential customers move smoothly through the stages of awareness, consideration, and decision-making.



11. Use predictive modelling and customer segmentation to target the right audience 

Predictive modelling predicts future outcomes using statistical algorithms and historical data. It can improve customer acquisition by helping you locate leads with the highest likelihood of converting into paying customers. 

Predictive models achieve this by analysing customer attributes, behaviours, and conversion patterns. This helps you allocate your marketing and sales resources more effectively, resulting in lower customer acquisition costs.

Customer segmentation also helps you reach the right audience. It refers to the process of splitting your target audience into subsets with similar demographics, interests, and purchasing habits. Your marketing efforts will be more personalised and effective if you adjust your messaging, offerings, and channels accordingly.


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Ready to Boost Profitability?

Boost profitability in the insurance industry by cutting customer acquisition costs. When you lower your customer acquisition costs, each policy you sell automatically generates a higher net profit. This helps you keep your finances stable. You can then allocate resources to relevant areas like new product development, better customer service, and market expansion.

Overall, lowering insurance customer acquisition costs allows you to reinvest in improving your customer retention efforts. And optimising the customer experience always drives sustained growth in a highly saturated insurance market.


How can an insurance company reduce its customer acquisition costs? 

Insurance companies reduce customer acquisition costs by identifying target audiences, enhancing digital presence, optimising sales funnels, implementing referral programmes, and forming strategic partnerships. These strategies attract relevant leads and improve conversion rates while minimising acquisition expenses.

Why do insurance businesses have some of the highest customer acquisition costs? 

Insurance businesses often face high customer acquisition costs because of several factors. Examples are slow digitisation, intense competition, and the need to build trust and comply with industry regulations. All these challenges make it more difficult and expensive for insurers to attract new customers.

How can personalised marketing help reduce insurance customer acquisition costs? 

Personalised marketing allows insurance companies to tailor their messaging and offerings to specific customer segments, increasing the relevance and effectiveness of their campaigns. By targeting the right audience with personalised content, insurers can improve conversion rates and reduce acquisition costs.

What role do loyalty programmes play in reducing customer acquisition costs for insurers? 

Loyalty programmes encourage existing customers to remain with the insurance company and make repeat purchases. By fostering customer retention, insurers can reduce the need for constant acquisition efforts, ultimately lowering overall acquisition costs and increasing customer lifetime value.

How can optimising the customer acquisition funnel help insurance businesses reduce costs? 

Optimising the customer acquisition funnel involves identifying and removing bottlenecks, streamlining the sales process, and providing a seamless user experience. By improving the efficiency of the funnel, insurers can convert leads into customers more effectively, reducing acquisition costs.

What are some customer acquisition metrics that insurance companies should track? 

Key customer acquisition metrics for insurance companies include customer acquisition cost (CAC), marketing ROI, and conversion rates. Others include customer lifetime value (CLV), and churn rates. Tracking these metrics helps insurers assess the effectiveness of their acquisition strategies and identify areas for improvement.

How can insurance businesses leverage case studies to attract new customers? 

Case studies showcase real-life examples of how an insurance company's products or services have benefited their clients. By sharing these success stories, insurers can build trust, and demonstrate their expertise. This attracts potential customers who can relate to the challenges and solutions presented.

What is the importance of a well-defined buyer persona in reducing customer acquisition costs? 

A well-defined buyer persona helps insurance companies understand their ideal customers' needs, preferences, and behaviours. By tailoring their marketing efforts and product offerings to these personas, insurers can attract more qualified leads. It also improves conversion rates, which ultimately reduces acquisition costs.

How can referral programmes help insurance businesses acquire new customers cost-effectively? 

Referral programmes incentivise existing customers to recommend the insurance company to their friends, family, or colleagues. By leveraging the trust and credibility of these personal recommendations, insurers can acquire new customers at a lower cost compared to traditional acquisition methods.

What role does customer segmentation play in reducing acquisition costs for insurance companies? 

Customer segmentation allows insurance companies to divide their target market into distinct groups based on demographics, behaviours, and needs. By tailoring acquisition strategies to specific segments, insurers improve the relevance and effectiveness of their campaigns, reducing acquisition costs.



Author Bio, Written By: 

Mark Camp | CEO & Founder at | LinkedIn

Mark is the Founder and CEO of Propello Cloud, an innovative SaaS platform for loyalty and customer engagement. With over 20 years of marketing experience, he is passionate about helping brands boost retention and acquisition with scalable loyalty solutions.

Mark is an expert in loyalty and engagement strategy, having worked with major enterprise clients across industries to drive growth through rewards programmes. He leads Propello Cloud's mission to deliver versatile platforms that help organisations attract, engage and retain customers.

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