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For 30 years, LIMRA MarketFacts has been the premier publication for financial services executives worldwide. Our mission is to bring the latest, most pertinent industry information to our readership — whether it is derived from industry research, company best practices, or insightful thought leadership. LIMRA MarketFacts offers unmatched content by inviting authorship from representatives of companies in LIMRA’s vast member roster, as well as from LIMRA’s internal subject matter experts and global thought leaders impacting the financial services arena.

Why is LIMRA MarketFacts different from other industry trade publications? Because we concentrate on developing in-depth, insightful articles devoted to the critical issues of the day impacting financial services industry decision-makers. By blending exclusive perspectives from LIMRA’s renowned research team and marketing experts with the industry’s top thought leadership, LIMRA MarketFacts provides the latest information on how companies can maximize their marketing and distribution effectiveness in an ever-evolving environment.

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Spring 2011

LIMRA MarketFacts

Number 1, 2011


Table of Contents
by Jennifer M. Berlin, LLIF, LIMRA

The sheer number of elderly — predicted to be nearly one quarter of the planet by 2050 — will create a demand for products and services unlike anything experienced. The insurance industry — in tandem with government programs — is in an excellent position to foster and promote long-term care solutions in the respective countries being served.

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by Cecilia M. Shiner, FSRI, FFSI, ALMI, ACS, LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute

For the retirement plans industry, a segmented marketing approach can help companies compile more relevant messaging and thereby increase product competitiveness. The not-for-profit retirement market covers a variety of segments such as hospitals, state and local governments, primary schools, and charitable organizations. Educational institutions are some of the most competitive areas of this market because many plans allow participants the choice of multiple plan providers and because of the large amount of assets in play.

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by Elizabeth H. Schwarz, ACS, LLIF, LIMRA

Straight-through processing (STP) includes electronic automation of all or part of the policy life cycle, from the point of sale through underwriting to policy administration. Some companies are striving to implement end-to-end STP systems while other companies involve only parts of the policy life cycle.

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by Robert Pokorski, MD, Hartford Life

On January 1, 2011, the first of 76 million U.S. boomers born in 1946 started to turn 65 — a middle-to-older age transition that the Baby Boomer HeadQuarters reports will continue at a rate of morethan 10,000 people per day, every day, for the next 18 years. Are individuals turning 65 ready for the daunting financial challenges that await them in their retirement years — particularly regarding the costs ofbecoming chronically ill?

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by Mary M. Art, LIMRA

Customer service can have a major impact on customer loyalty. Today’s greater use of technology often reduces the amount of contact customers have with insurance companies, and so companies need to find more ways to make the customer experience stand out.

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by Oliver W. Kuhn, Life Resources Company

Professional advisors have a strong measure of accountability for protecting small businesses adequately. As LIMRA’s 2009 Small-Business Ownersstudy indicates, small businesses — private companies with 1 to 99 employees — number more than 5.1 million and constitute 85 percent of privately heldfirms in the United States. Yet, the inability to fund a unique opportunity could be catastrophic to a small business’s competitive advantage.

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by Cheryl D. Retzloff, LLIF, ACS, LIMRA

Never has there been a greater need for life insurance in U.S. households than there is today. As LIMRA’s 2010 Household Trends in U.S. Life Insurance Ownership reports, 3 in 10 households (35 million) currently have no life insurance coverage — an increase of 11 million households since 2004. In addition, half of all U.S. households now believe they are underinsured. Although individual life insurance ownership among U.S. households has reached a 50-year low, it’s not all dark and gloomy for insurers. Many opportunities exist for companies willing to approach their distribution with fresh perspectives.

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by Scott R. Kallenbach, FLMI, LIMRA

Perhaps the future now belongs to organizations and sales professionals that concentrate on specific markets and products. Companies may fare better with a narrow, targeted approach than with a wider view. This article explores the benefits of niche marketing.

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by Gregory Winsper, Penn Mutual

If actuaries peered inside their own companies, there’s a good chance that they would see a perfect storm brewing: a large numbers of agents are slowly phasing into retirement without any formal retirement or succession planning in place. Over the next two decades, this storm could cost some life

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by John R. Graham, Graham Communications

Even after three years of economic gloom, predictions for recovery and growth among industries in 2011 are mixed. One thing is for certain: The year ahead will be pushed in different directions by events beyond our control. This article presents guideposts that can help point the way for a beneficial 2011.

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by Terry B. Jones, Essential Ideas

Face-to-face distribution isn’t going away, nor is the direct contact by mail or phone. Nonetheless, insurance providers must today learn how to builddigital relationships with their customers — as it’s no longer possible to predict through which distribution door customers will enter your business. Will they walk into your office, call you on the phone, send you an email, visit your Web site, or try to tweet you? You must open all the doors and be indifferent to how they enter.

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by Sally A. Bryck, LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute

Retirees with more than $500,000 in household investable assets are just about as likely to be going it alone without a financial advisor as are less wealthy retirees. What are these retirees missing out on, and are advisors succeeding when it comes to helping clients switch from the accumulation phase to the distribution phase of their lives?

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Mary-Beth Selby
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