‘Know your audience’ has become a fundamental principle of business, one that entrepreneurs like Krishen Iyer take seriously.
The owner of MAIS Consulting is all about helping clients in the insurance industry with their marketing needs along with assisting them in the development of contracts, policies, and their overall strategic growth.
He brings more than 20 years of experience in the insurance industry in a wide variety of roles, from being an agent to owning a business. He has also learned the importance of building relationships at all levels and hopes that working collaboratively with clients can lead to success for everyone involved.
Part of what Krishen Iyer especially enjoys doing is creating partnerships by working closely with clients to help their businesses improve at all levels, such as attracting more customers while making sure existing customers not only stay satisfied but become excited to buy new products over the course of their lifetimes.
He also encourages his clients to seek mentorship opportunities, whether it’s someone new to the business looking for a helping hand and relevant advice from someone who has been at it longer, or for a veteran client looking for ways to share their wisdom and make sure agents coming up know what they’re supposed to say and do. Everyone wins when this happens, but sometimes it’s hard to take the first step and reach out.
In the last few decades, the whole concept of “how can your business reach out and attract new business?” has changed dramatically.
Certainly, the underlying principles haven’t changed – always offer superior service, build relationships, provide what people want and what they need – but the traditional rules of ‘how you let them know about it’ no longer apply.
Advertising through mass media used to be the standard practice, whether it was TV ads or print ads. These media had tremendous reaches, so it wasn’t hard to consider that your ideal audience was “everyone.” Certainly, there were trade publications and B2B newsletters but these still centered around the “everyone gets our message even those who may not want or need it.”
But now, because of the fragmentation of legacy media, the relative affordability of email and social media outreach methods, and more digital options, companies have the ability to better learn more details about who is utilizing their products and services.
With this knowledge, they can put effort into reaching out directly to their ideal audiences. This is a much better use of limited marketing funds.
This practice has evolved so much that companies are even encouraged to come up with composites of their ideal customer, including gender, age, occupation, financial status, household size, and other demographic identifiers. This helps marketers put all sorts of creativity into their messaging.
If done right, it’s even easier to connect with a prospect, but if done improperly, can quickly turn prospects away, feeling like the company isn’t for them at all.
Every industry also has its own customer profiles, including the world of insurance that Krishen Iyer interacts with regularly.
Interestingly, some of these profiles have changed and evolved due to changes in our economy and culture. At the same time, some new general customer profiles have emerged.
Microsoft Advertising recently released a list of four new customer personas that are unique in what they want and need, their buying behaviors, and how they want to be marketed to, regardless of industry.
Its first-party data and advanced analytics over the last 18 months revealed that these profiles include:
- Luxury Shoppers want the finer things in life, even if there are restrictions due to COVID. They’re the ones looking for luxury, planning, and taking vacations. They like to do research. Quality is important but so is how they’re treated.
- Digital Nomad. These customers may have had their lives uprooted by choice or circumstance, but they’re making the best of the experience. They may not have a permanent place to call home but they still like connecting with the world, even if it’s from a temporary spot at an RV park. They have the freedom and time to research and also explore the world. It’s important to engage them and make them aware of digital products.
- Self-Care Enthusiasts. COVID has led to a lot of people paying better attention to themselves, their families, and their overall health and wellness. This has extended into what they want to buy, such as what can allow them to pursue projects that are good for their physical and mental health. It could be an interest in planning ahead if something happens to them (insurance, anyone?)
- Empowered Activist. This persona is not only interested in the greater good but is eager to spend their money on companies that have a similar commitment. This works the other way too: they aren’t eager to do business with companies that don’t share their personal, spiritual, or political values.
Krishen Iyer’s thoughts
As an expert in marketing, insurance products, and people who work in the insurance business, Krishen Iyer has learned to be responsive to what products and services work the best for customers.
He entered the industry following graduation from San Diego State University with a degree in public administration and urban development. His early experiences included managing companies and promoting affiliate distribution centers that provided various sales and services to clients.
He also started several companies, including MNP Insurance/Name My Premium which made it easy for customers to customize what they want. This unique model attracted the attention of Inc magazine.
This was followed by the creation of MBS or Managed Benefit Services, a full-service licensed insurance agency and marketing firm. Krishen Iyer and the staff provided detailed customer and analytical data to others in the insurance world, including recommendations about which customer groups have the highest likelihood of being clients and wanting certain products.
Utilizing the services of MBS made it easier for insurance clients to approach prospective customers.
After he sold MBS, Krishen Iyer created MAIS Consulting, where he helps his clients find growth opportunities by sharing his marketing expertise and support.
Today, he spends part of his day checking in with individual clients about their current situation and any marketing or outreach needs. He then meets with his staff to brainstorm solutions for the challenges clients may be having.
He’s found that customer-first focus is vital, and the more you know about the customer, the more opportunities you can have to reach them and help them.