Till Death Do Us Part

Statistics show that among divorced couples, most are childless. And then there’s this 30 year research study that explored how having children affects a marriage, and the results are conclusive: the relationship between couples suffers when kids come along. Researchers found that the rate of the decline in relationship satisfaction is nearly twice as steep for couples who have children than for childless couples. However, even as the marital satisfaction of new parents declines, the likelihood of them divorcing also declines. And we’ve already established that fact above.

“People assume children are the glue that holds a marriage together, which really isn’t true. Children are huge stressors…Despite that, there is a strong motive to stay together. The childfree don’t have that motive so there’s no reason to stay together if it’s not working.” – Laura S. Scott, director of the Childless by Choice Project. Get a feel below:

What’s at stake?

On one hand, insurers play an important role in an insured’s life, yet they are easily replaceable. On the other, try to convince iPhone users to switch to Samsung for free, and you’ll find that it’s easier to sell them insurance, even life insurance. Some may suggest that brand loyalty has something to do with it, but that’s mostly not the case. It’s about what’s at stake. Let me explain. In this scenario of switching smartphone manufactures it’s also about photos, apps, contacts, message history, and any other devices that integrate with one’s phone. Suddenly, it’s not just a question of Apple v. Samsung.

Remember Google+? In just two weeks the social network grew to 10M users. It still failed. Why? Because users spent a lot of time adding Facebook friends and photo albums, and they simply didn’t want to do it all over again on a new platform. As a result, users spent a small amount of time on Google+; nothing much to do or see.

It’s pretty obvious that when we have more at stake, our decisions become more complex. When couples think about getting a divorce, it’s not just about their happiness if there’s a child involved. When consumers think about cancelling their Amazon Prime membership, it’s not only about the free 2-day shipping; there are 25 other services they will lose. That is the biggest challenge in the relationship between consumers and insurers – there’s nothing at stake.

Go beyond insurance

You may think that your investment arm or commitment to innovation will save you, but if you focus just on improving your existing insurance-related offerings then you’re doomed. Currently, insurance is about price and service, but if you think about it, most people will only pay attention to price. I said ‘most’. If a competitor with a better price comes along then that’s all it takes to lose a customer. Think of a restaurant with great food and bad service – some would return as they remember one positive. That’s not the case with insurance as most only experience one aspect. Now, if The Hartford acquired a company like Upserve, to later offer a special integration for restaurant owners then that will help deepen the relationship. So, even if another insurer offers a better price, the restaurant owner may still decide to stay because The Hartford offers something that goes beyond price.

People aren’t what they used to be

When I think of how the internet has changed us, I think of how my mom used to buy us Adidas gear because – in her mind – that was a great brand. Fast Forward. Last week, I purchased these shoes from a brand I’d never heard of. I was so impressed with how open-minded I was for not going with the obvious brand names, but then I realized that it took me 20 minutes of online research to make a decision. In the old days, people went with the familiar and stuck with it, because that’s what you do when you can’t Google stuff and don’t want to take unnecessary risks. Nowadays, the internet gives us confidence that we can achieve more. It gives us the feeling that we are original, creative and open-minded, but take the internet away and we’re boring and predictable.

Temptation is a strong feeling, but fear is stronger. Now that the internet is here, people fear less and are tempted more. Our only hope is to have a lot of kids and hold tight till death do us part. The good news is that statistics are on our side.