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Ideas: MassMutual, LifeSecure, PCRM

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A life insurer has found evidence that postcard mailings and e-mail messages can have a concrete effect on retirement plan deferral levels.

Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company, Springfield, Mass., has experimented this year with a campaign that calls for participants to increase retirement savings by taking three steps: Saving, consolidating accounts, and allocating plan savings to meet specific retirement goals.

The campaign reached about 310,000 participants in retirement plans administered by MassMutual.

MassMutual looked at the effects of the campaign on participants under 50 years of age who were deferring less than 12% of their salaries and participants over 50 years of age regardless of deferral percentage.

The campaign had a response rate of about 4.4%, and those participants who responded increased deferrals by an average of about 4.3%.

The average increase was 3.1% for participants under 50 and 4.4% for participants over 50.

MassMutual recently adjusted the campaign to send different messages to men and women.

Women who responded increased their deferrals an average of 3.5%, to about 8%, and men who responded also increased their deferrals an average of 3.5%, to 8.3%.

More on this topic

In other ideas news:

- LifeSecure Insurance Company, Brighton, Mich., says it thinks many consumers want personal accident insurance – a product that can reimburse them for expenses resulting from an injury.

Consumers can use personal accident products even if they have health savings accounts (HSA) and must have high-deductible major medical products to meet HSA program requirements.

The company cites estimates that 1 out of 9 U.S. residents seek medical care due to injuries every year.

- The Rhoads Online Institute, New York, the parent of the PCRM compliance management system, says it sees strong demand for use of social networks and mobile phone systems to help insurance agents and their managers keep track of agent licensing requirements.

Agents are already using social media to build relationships and sell policies, and it seems logical that they also should use social media tools to handle compliance, the institute says.

Alerts could be posted to social media accounts or sent as text messages to telephones, the institute says.