There are over 550 Medicare Advantage plan sponsors. That’s a sea of competition! It’s time to look beyond member acquisition and start focusing on member retention. Whether a plan marketer or sales broker, it’s vital to spend time on the after-sale sale.
Satisfied consumers will tell 4 people about their positive customer experiences. Unsatisfied customers will tell an average of 11 people. Do you know which of your members are sharing their experiences with their friends? And, is it 4 or 11?
Most plan managers don’t even know the cost of a customer complaint. It’s critical to step back and look deep inside your organization. Ask some tough questions (see box). Then put together a plan of action to tackle member retention.
What Your Peers Are Reading
An important step is talking (and listening) to your customers. Rather than conducting lengthy and exhausting customer satisfaction surveys, which usually have dismal response rates, use short surveys where the real value question is answered immediately: “Would you recommend us to a friend?” This research will reveal who are your brand advocates are as well as who is on the bubble and ready to switch.
Seniors have vast social networks and rely heavily on those networks when making choices–at point of purchase and again at renewal. If members aren’t happy, negative stories and word-of-mouth innuendos can quickly spiral into increased disenrollment rates.
One measure gaining popularity is a company’s Net Promoter Score (NPS). It ranks your customers on a scale of 1-10, then takes the percent of promoters and subtracts the percent of detractors.
10-9 = Promoters (brand advocates and ambassadors, speak on your behalf).
8-7 = Passives (neutral and vulnerable, would most likely switch for better offer).
0-6 = Detractors (sharing negative experiences, actively seeking to switch).
There’s a direct correlation with a strong NPS and member retention. Promoters are high-value, high-return customers. They are long-term supporters and they’re influential. It’s wise to listen to them, speak to them, invest in them and work hard to keep them happy.