By Keith Martin, Co-Executive Director, CAFII.
Each year, CAFII invests time, energy and significant financial resources to gain insights into the evolving insurance needs of Canadians, and to provide them with information that can help them make better choices about which types of insurance might best fit their needs.
Nowhere is that priority more apparent than on our website, which contains dozens of product descriptions, frequently asked questions, real-life scenarios of how different products work, videos, webinars, and consumer research into insurance, in particular Credit Protection Insurance, Travel Medical Insurance, Trip Cancellation Insurance, and Trip Interruption Insurance.
Equally important, we add new content to our website on a regular basis to enhance its usefulness to consumers and respond to needs identified through our research. Let’s look at a few examples over the past 12 months.
In 2021, we added an additional forum on our website for sharing information with consumers via a new blog called Insights. Since starting this forum in May, we’ve posted five articles, including ones that explain the various types of home insurance products and what they are for, and the range of travel insurance products available to consumers and what each provides.
During the year, we also commissioned Pollara Strategic Insights, one of Canada’s leading research firms, to ask Canadians about their preferred way to access banking and insurance services, and whether the COVID-19 pandemic has changed that preference temporarily or permanently. We subsequently shared the executive summary of the survey results in the research section of our website, in a blog post and in a press release.
We also hosted a series of live webinars about insurance issues, recordings of which were posted to our website for viewing by anyone, anytime. These webinars included a discussion about the future of travel and travel insurance as the world emerges from COVID-19, and a discussion with Lesli Martin of Pollara Strategic Insights about the consumer research they conducted for CAFII.
And in May, we added a new motion-graphic video to our website and on YouTube that explains the features and benefits of both critical illness credit protection insurance and disability credit protection insurance. The two-minute video describes how these insurance products work, and how they provide protection against different types of risk.
And just this month, we added to our website a new video that highlights the main findings of the Pollara Strategic Insights research into the preferences of consumers with respect to how they want to access financial services, including insurance. It is one of eight informative videos that can now be found on the CAFII website and on YouTube.
Going back to the fall of 2020, we have added five new customer experience scenarios to the website and new frequently asked questions. The customer scenarios, or personal vignettes as we call them, address who can apply for mortgage life insurance, what factors to consider if a consumer has other types of life insurance, if there is a maximum amount of credit protection for mortgage life insurance coverage which one can obtain, if premiums for mortgage life insurance will increase over time, and whether credit protection insurance provides good value.
These additions brought the number of FAQs on the CAFII website to 17, and the number of vignettes to more than 30.
Over the past year, CAFII has also met with a number of provincial and federal insurance regulators to review matters of importance, including the fair treatment of customers. In these meetings, we provided insights from our consumer research, and discussed issues relevant to the simple, accessible insurance solutions that our members offer to Canadians coast-to-coast.
While it’s been a busy 12 months, there is still more to come.
For example, we will soon be releasing a new educational video about Job Loss Credit Protection Insurance, which is one of the products with the highest search ranking on our website. Later this year, we will be adding up to 10 new FAQs to the site based on search results by consumers, and producing a new video about the consumer protections available to purchasers of insurance. And, we will continue to add posts to our Insights blog whenever we have useful information to share.
Our research shows that consumer knowledge of credit protection and travel insurance products in Canada has been increasing, which suggests our educational efforts in this regard are delivering consumer benefits and having some success. As we continue to invest in another year of research and consumer education, we look forward to this trend continuing.