The high-net-worth (HNW) segment has long been a preferred niche market for insurance agents and most other financial services marketers. At the same time, however, most of these practitioners have had only modest success in penetrating this lucrative marketing. Maybe now is the time for a fresh look
For years, the HNW market was defined as “upscale” professionals who lived in upscale zip codes, drove luxury cars, played golf at their country clubs and traveled extensively. Then, in 1996, Thomas Stanley published a seminal work entitled The Millionaire Next Door that identified a generally unseen and underserved cadre of affluence in this country. These are savvy business people and value-driven consumers with primarily middle-class sensibilities who continue to work hard to establish financial stability. These individuals work not in high-profile professions, but rather in low-profile occupations. They are, for example, marine engineers, construction supervisors and heavy equipment suppliers who are not traditionally targeted as HNW prospects.
Over a decade later, this group of “invisible millionaires” still remains an enigma to most insurance professionals. As a result, there remains a significant opportunity for those who take the time to understand their needs and priorities.