I recently read a Competiscan report on consumer insights to Medicare Advantage plans direct mail pieces. It highlighted the various approaches to reach those aging into Medicare. The main purpose of the report was to gain insights on different Medicare Advantage direct mail marketing communications. They asked 100+ consumers between the ages of 64 and 66 across gender and income levels to rank four direct mail acquisition pieces across statements assessing their emotional and rational reactions on a scale of lowest to highest to determine which communications resonated. If you click on the image of the letters it will take you to a larger view to see the text and all the package details.

Highlights of the study included:

  • 70% of all respondents prefer to respond these acquisition offers online. No other communication channel came close so having clearly marked landing pages are of utmost importance.
  • Having multiple ways to respond, i.e. online, mail, call the company, call an agent is important to provide people multiple ways to receive more information with online being the highest priority.
  • Humana ranked highest among respondents in terms of emotional and rational perceptions with 63% stating they would likely or very likely respond to the piece (slide 11) as well as 63% said they would prefer to respond online with reply-by-mail coming in 2nd at 31%.
  • United was 2nd in terms of emotional and rational perceptions with 64% saying they would respond to the piece (slide 15) with 75% saying they would prefer to respond online and calling the company coming in 2nd at 42%.
  • Aetna was 3rd highest in terms of emotional and rational perceptions and 47% saying they would be likely/very likely to respond to the offer. 68% said they would respond online and the 2nd channel was to call the company at 34% (slide 19).
  • BCBS of IL was 4th with 51% saying they would be likely/very likely to respond to the offer with 71% wanting to respond online and the 2nd choice being replying by mail at 31% (slide 23).
  • Each piece has responder feedback/comments that are positive and also negative to see what they thought about each one.

As you can see, creative treatments are incredibly important in how we talk to seniors, and the impact of emotional appeal cannot be understated.