When thinking about the insurance industry, most people think traditional and boring — they don’t typically associate insurance with the words “digital” or “innovative”. However, based on the research we recently published, it’s clear that not only are consumers embracing digital avenues to search for, buy, and manage their insurance policies, but marketers are following suit, with digital spend in the financial services industry jumping from $4.03 billion in 2011 to an expected $7.38 billion in 2017 — an increase of 83%!

Our recent infographic, Kenshoo Industry Spotlight — Financial Services: Insurance, highlights this digital spending trend while also sharing other search and social insights tailored to the insurance industry.

For those not having much of a background in the insurance industry and its dynamics, many of the findings within this infographic may be surprising and demonstrate that this industry has evolved over time, constantly responding to changes in consumer behavior. For example, eMarketer reports that financial services (which includes insurance) is the second biggest sector for digital spend, only second to retail. While this may seem unexpected at first, it makes sense considering the many sectors within insurance which create a great deal of competition, thus increasing any advertising costs.

When drilling down to the keyword-level data among Kenshoo insurance clients, the majority of spend, impressions, and clicks are associated with non-brand keywords, as seen in the pie charts below.

Brand v Non Brand Insurance Metrics

Consumers are much more likely to search for non-branded keywords such as “car insurance” or “home insurance” rather than branded keywords because they may be unaware of all insurance brand names, making the likelihood that they will search for those specific brand keywords very slim.

Marketers need to understand this dynamic and adjust bids for non-brand keywords in order to gain exposure and engagement. The extra spend that they will incur for this will be worthwhile as the data shows that non-branded terms hold a much larger share in clicks and impressions than branded.

Understanding the nuances of consumer behavior and the competitive nature within a specific industry can truly help paid search and social programs succeed. Marketers should tailor their strategies to adjust for trends within the industry to increase engagement and overall performance.

Check out the full insurance spotlight infographic here and be sure not to miss out on the [key]word search at the bottom —  solve the puzzle and discover the top 25 word within insurance keyword searches.