THERE are already 13 insurance companies and one insurance broker engaged in selling their insurance products through telemarketing, the Insurance Commission (IC) has reported.
“Since the issuance of the guidelines on telemarketing of insurance products in 2016, there are now 13 insurance companies and one insurance broker with IC-approved telemarketing agreements,” Insurance Commissioner Dennis Funa said.
Under IC regulations, an insurance company with an approved telemarketing agreement is allowed to market its insurance products by means of telephone calls, typically unsolicited, to potential customers.
A telemarketer can promote the insurance product of a particular insurance company, as well conclude insurance contracts, under a telemarketing platform.
“The authority of a telemarketer to conclude an insurance product depends on whether or not he or she is a licensed insurance agent. In other words, an individual who is not a licensed agent is only allowed to conduct preliminary introduction and presentation of insurance products. On the other hand, a telemarketer who is a licensed agent may solicit or sell insurance products.” he added.
Through telemarketing agreements, insurance companies have alternative distribution channels, allowing them to promote their insurance products and provide advice, sales and support to their customers.
“Telemarketing does not only involve the utilization of technology in the development of alternative platforms in offering insurance products to the public; more important, it is a distribution innovation, which can highly contribute to bring about an increase on market penetration and expansion of public awareness of existing insurance products,” he said.
Insurance companies are free to develop their own script or spiel to be used in their telemarketing activities, under the IC regulation on telemarketing.
However, the following processes are required to be incorporated: notice to the prospective client that the call is being recorded, and confirmation of client’s interest and information details.
To ensure that clients are adequately protected, insurance companies and insurance brokers are required to have a mechanism in place to address customer complaints and grievances.
“Telemarketing offers insurance solutions to the insuring public through this platform. In other jurisdictions, telemarketing proves to be an effective tool to reach out to the customers by providing valuable information and access to insurance products,” he added.
The most recent telemarketing agreement approved by the IC is the telephone appointment activity to be conducted by FWD Life Insurance Corp. (FWD Life) through the telesales associates of its bancassurance partner, Security Bank Corp. (SBC).
“We are delighted to reach out to more Filipinos in providing financial protection relevant to the lifestyles of the customers through the telesales associates of SBC, our bancassurance partner. FWD Life is currently active in more than 300 Security Bank branches nationwide and this customer engagement activity enables more Filipinos to be financially secured,” said FWD Life Philippines President and CEO Peter Grimes.
The IC would develop a reporting framework on telemarketing activities of insurance companies, to aid the insurance regulator in analyzing the level of growth of insurance telemarketing in the country, according to Funa.
“We reiterate our continuing challenge to the insurance industry players to explore ways to reinvent sales and distribution models and to innovate ways of unlocking new and emerging markets,” he said.
The following are the insurance companies with approved telemarketing agreements: Philippine AXA Life Insurance Corp., BPI/MS Insurance Corp., BPI-Philam Life Assurance Corp., FWD Life, Insurance Company of North America (A Chubb Company), Malayan Insurance Co. Inc., Manila Bankers Life Insurance Corp., Manufacturers Life Insurance Co. (Phils.) Inc., Mapfre Insular Insurance Corp., Paramount Life & General Insurance Corp., Pioneer Insurance and Surety Corp., Prudential Guarantee and Assurance Inc., Sun Life Grepa Financial Inc.
The only insurance broker with an approved telemarketing agreement is Citicorp Financial Services and Insurance Brokerage Philippines Inc.