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Consumers may not be into brand names

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Health insurance shoppers may not necessarily care as much about carrier brand names as the carriers and their marketing firms think they do.

Steve Zaleznick, a marketing strategist at, a health data company, says in a new analysis that his company tried to measure the importance of health insurer brand importance earlier this month.

The company asked Web users, “Would the absence of popular health plans like Aetna and United on Obamacare exchanges make you less certain that you can find your best health plan option there?”

Only about 31 percent of the 697 participants said a lack of big-name coverage options would make them less certain.

The results suggest that consumers are giving the insurers that have actually agreed to sell through the new exchanges the benefit of the doubt, Zaleznick says.

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