Being an InsurTech company that offers personalised underwriting, micro insurance products and an automated micro claims process, Acko has been working in the country’s antiquated insurance industry with a digital-first product for drivers and others in the transportation-related sector.
Founded in 2016, the company has been witnessing a good year-on-year growth. While the auto insurance category (car and bike) is worth $6 bn, but online auto insurance standing at just $0.4bn, Acko achieved a GWP of $20 mn in FY19. Targeting 3x growth in FY20, the company believes in giving customers a hassle-free, effortless micro-insurance service along with 360-degree customer experiences.
Kavita Chowkimane, VP Marketing at Acko, told BestMediaInfo.com in an interaction how the company has been consistently growing even in the economic slowdown. On its marketing strategy, she said the offline and digital budget has a 60:40 ratio and that Acko plans to explore print soon.
Enabling the Indian consumer to buy car or bike insurances online, the company reaches out with consumers directly and through brand partnerships as well.
Acko has built its business on two fronts. A direct-to-consumer offering sells automotive insurance to people, a business that has now insured more than 200,000 cars. It also works with third parties to provide micro-insurance products around services of other brands.
“There are traditional insurance players, who have been in the business for so many years. In terms of digital insurers, there are only a few players and Acko was the first mover. We also offer our insurance products through our partners. For example, we work with Ola to insure the rides, with Oyo for insuring the stay of consumers. We enable Indian consumers to do it quickly and seamlessly through our website,” said Chowkimane.
Having partnered with redBus, Zomato, UrbanClap and Amazon among others for such micro-insurances, she said the company’s approach has always been to understand the pain points of the brands and work with those who serve the same target group.
Micro insurance is something that is there for short duration and is micro in all sense. The amount of effort it takes to claim for one particular ride is micro in that way, and not like a one-year period. Car and bike insurances otherwise are annual purchases. And that’s where the real challenge is—engaging a customer for the whole year.
“The real challenge for us is to first drive awareness around the brand, ensuring whosoever is renewing their insurance comes online and looks for Acko. Plus, we need to have a good mix of marketing channels to be able to influence that awareness at higher level. And being an annual sort of a purchase, we need to engage the user throughout the year. It's not an impulse purchase. Making sure that we are touching the customer at the right points, influencing the decision when it comes to the purchase date, we give the customer a seamless consistent experience. Maintaining the brand tonality, we provide 360-degree consumer experience.”
Acko taps customers through the channel they are present on. Being present on social media channels, it has partnered with platforms such as Hotstar in the past during the World Cup. For offline, a mix of OOH such as bus branding, television and radio helps it to increase brand awareness. Other than that, it also plans to explore print. Chowkimane said the company chooses only that media which gives it a good ROI on the spends.
Though it allocates a 60:40 budget in terms of offline and digital, it keeps changing it according to the seasonality and occasions, when it expect consumers to come online and look for policies.
With an increase in the number of people opting digital for insurance policies, Acko has been shielded from the recession and other such headwinds. Further, the government’s recent move to hike penalties and fines under the Motor Vehicle Act has led more people to insure their automobiles, which means more traction to the website.
Vouching on its innovation-led services that have led more customers to its website, Acko has been witnessing a huge growth in traffic. With a core data team and analysts, she said the company intelligently blends data in marketing efforts and ensures that customer information is not shared with anyone where it's not required.