Anatomy of a successful home page.
Last year, I partnered with the team at Allianz Global Assistance to improve sales and renewals for their Tuition Insurance product.
Tuition Insurance is a wonderful product that can give additional peace of mind to families sending their children away to college. It goes well beyond the limited refund options provided by the institutions themselves, and provides families with a low-cost way to protect their investment they are making in higher education … for most families, the second biggest and most profoundly personal investment they will make.
Even though the product and the value proposition are so appealing, the company has faced a number of challenges in building their book of business, including:
- Relatively low awareness of the category, even among highly engaged parents and students.
- General perception that the school will reimburse in the event of a student withdrawal
- Long-held belief among financial advisors and other “insiders” that tuition insurance is not worth the cost.
Through an extensive content marketing strategy and significant upgrades to the messaging, design and functionality of the website, we were able to overcome these objections and see significant growth in awareness, consideration, adoption and advocacy for Allianz Tuition Insurance. Here’s a look at what we did to accomplish that:
The hero image.
Right from the very top, we were looking to drive quote activity, and make it easy for visitors to quickly understand the primary value of tuition insurance.
That’s why, perhaps somewhat counterintuitively for a website, we very promptly positioned a phone number, right near the top. The truth is for this and other speciality insurance products, customer support teams have great success in driving quotes and conversions. This is, after all, a topic that invites questions but, also, is something that parents and grandparents (the primary audience who calls) really like to talk about. Their child. His or her future. And how to protect it.
The headline in the hero image very quickly presents the value of the product while pre-empting one of the most common objectives (“How much?”)
With a prominent call-to-action, this headline area quickly and persuasively encourages and direct action.
But, what about the people who need to know more?
The quote you see from The New York Times does double duty … suggesting an implied endorsement from the Times while giving a nuts-and-bolts statistic underscoring the need for the insurance. So the site has very quickly pivoted from the brand’s POV to “don’t take our word for it … take theirs.” The addition of the US News, CNBC and Forbes bugs takes that even further. Given the low awareness and somewhat mixed press on the category, we went in assuming a certain level of skepticism would need to be overcome.
Following a section that clearly lays out the product benefits in three click-through cards, we added another section to engage another mode through which consumers are increasingly taking in their information … a quick, engaging how-it-works video.
You can see that the headline here not only brings in some nice, warm brand voice, it also underscores the simplicity of the value proposition. If it can be explained in 27 seconds, how complex can it really be?
When building your own site, be very intentional with the user experience you create around videos. One of the worst things you can do is to send a prospect out to YouTube, where they can very easily end up down a rabbit hole, never to return. Instead, control the experience through the use of a modal window (embedded player) to keep the consumer within your site.
Following some additional clickable calls-to-action, we provided some more hard-hitting third-party endorsements. The thinking here was that anyone who had scrolled down this far without jumping off was interested, but needed a little push to take an action.
These three quotes also took the product out of the category of “Why should I?” to “Why wouldn’t I? … an essential step on the journey of the skeptical consumer.
Good, strong, general interest content is also important … it keeps people on your page and gives them a good opportunity to share your wisdom with their friends and family. Within the content library, we seeded a mix of product-focused posts with some of more general interest to the college-going community … articles likely to show up in organic searches and to have a life beyond those who stumbled upon them on the site. Here are a few examples:
The site also included a deeper-dive page … Tuition Insurance 101 … that went into greater detail on the scope of the college withdrawal problem and the benefits of coverage. But, looking just at the initial homepage, we were successful in positioning Allianz Tuition Insurance as a sensible choice for any family looking to protect their financial well-being while also support the health and happiness of their college student.
The client experience significant year-over-year growth in site visits, quote starts, an purchases as a result of the multi-channel content strategy and the significant improvements in the website experience.