Pru Life raises digital marketing game amid pandemic
If there’s one thing that consumers would want to protect themselves from starting now, it’s contracting a disease such as COVID-19 and facing uncertainty concerning their health—and for a life insurance company in the Philippines, they’ve made it their job to provide Filipinos with the right tools to protect themselves.Amid the pandemic, Pru Life UK has focused on “mobile health management,” or smart self-help tools that can easily be accessed using one’s mobile gadget, in order to reach more customers and ensure their safety and wellness. Free to use and powered by artificial intelligence technology, Pru Life calls this health management system Pulse, an app that allows users to assess the primary state of their health from the comfort of home.
“Pru Life UK is proud to provide [Pulse] to help users understand their health better and empower them to make more informed health decisions. We encourage Filipinos to use Pulse to prevent, postpone and protect themselves against the onset of diseases,” says Pru Life UK senior vice president and chief customer marketing officer Allan Tumbaga.
Powered by UK-based health care technology and services company Babylon, Pulse’s main feature is the Symptom Checker. This tool asks users to enter the symptoms they are feeling using a chatbot, which also asks them questions pertinent to these symptoms. The Symptom Checker then gives users suggestions on the next steps they should take—to do self-care, purchase the appropriate medication, visit a primary care doctor, or go to the nearest hospital—by identifying related risk factors from then symptoms and information that were entered.
Pulse also has a Healthcheck feature, which creates a health report of the user and offers insights into potential long-term disease risks represented through the Digital Twin, a graphic representation of the user’s body broken down by organ, based on their inputs to a digital questionnaire.
The app’s other tools include the Hospital Locator, which provides a map that pinpoints nearby hospitals and clinics; and Pulse Beats and Prudence Foundation’s Safe Steps Safety Card, which are educational materials that suggests to users preventative measures against certain illnesses—including the much-dreaded COVID-19.
And speaking of COVID-19, Tumbaga says the Symptom Checker has been recently updated to provide alerts on symptoms and conditions that could be related to the disease, as well as additional information on how users can access the appropriate treatment (if necessary). Until July 15, Pru Life UK offered to Filipinos 18 to 64 years old the chance to avail themselves of free COVID-19 coverage and personal accident insurance, which provides a death benefit of P100,000 to the beneficiaries if the insured passes away due to accident or as a result of the new coronavirus disease (subject to terms and conditions).
“This was our way of thanking and showing our appreciation to these individuals for doing their commitment and sacrifice in keeping our countrymen healthy and safe,” Tumbaga says.
When asked if coverage for COVID-19 would now be part of Pru Life UK’s new normal, Tumbaga says it’s still a matter for consideration.
What will stay for the long haul is the Pulse app, Tumbaga says, as Pru Life UK sees mobile health as a major driver of the insurance industry’s growth moving forward. New features and functionalities, such as telemedicine and e-prescriptions, are in the pipeline, as well as new partnerships with health, fitness and tech brands.
“Technology plays an extremely relevant role amid these challenging times. Even with many areas of the country now under [modified general community quarantine], many Filipinos are continuing to stay at home or minimizing outside contact. Through Pulse, we aim to [provide] an accessible health assistant that can guide them 24/7 toward maintaining their health and well-being,” Tumbaga says. “The use of technology in how we work and sell products will continue to rise, with digital being the main channel in the new normal. Pru Life UK is well-equipped to handle this—being protected against uncertainties will now be the top priority for Filipinos, and it is exactly what life insurance is for.” —Annelle Tayao-Juego
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