Aviva Canada, Sharp Mobile bring discounted app offering to 50 brokers

The insurer is covering some costs for qualified brokers interested in amplifying their digital presence

Aviva Canada and Sharp Mobile are partnering up to bring the tech company’s mobile app and web portal at a discount to the first 50 digitally-qualified brokers that apply for the program.

Aviva plans to cover the initial license fee and a discount of 50% for a one-year term of 50 brokers who qualify and are interested in implementing Sharp Mobile’s iMobilebroker technology. The tool includes the development of a client-facing app that is designed with each brokerage’s brand in mind.

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“What we’re trying to do here is encourage other brokers to get in the [digital] game as well by making the barrier to entry that much lower,” says Tom Reid, executive director of digital broker strategy at Aviva Canada, in an interview with Canadian Insurance Top Broker. “We’re putting our money where our mouth is. We’ve been talking about digitizing brokers and responding to consumer needs for some time now.”

The program is beginning with 50 brokers but the insurer will explore expanding the program if it sees a high demand, according to Reid.

The iMobilebroker platform consists of an app and web portal in which a broker’s clients can access their digital motor vehicle liability insurance card, policy details and payment details. The client can also submit a claim, request policy changes and receive notifications from their brokerage. It is a multi-market tool so clients can see their policy details from Aviva in addition to any other insurers that underwrite their policies.

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The platform is branded to each broker’s business. It will carry the individual brokerage’s name, logo and other identifying characteristics. “The customer should log in whether it’s through the mobile app or web portal…see the broker brand and feel like they’re interacting with the broker, which is key in today’s world,” says Ken Sedgewick, director of sales for Sharp Mobile, to Canadian Insurance Top Broker.

The tool is meant to help independent brokerages connect with clients in a landscape of direct insurance providers such as Economical Insurance’s Sonnet and Intact Financial Corp.’s Belairdirect and their national marketing budgets, according to Sedgewick.

“In order to keep the broker brand in front of the customer, there needs to be this kind of tool to keep [brokers] involved and communicating with [customers],” he says.

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Interested brokers must meet certain requirements. Aviva Canada will help fund the tool for brokers who can demonstrate an effort and interest in furthering their digital presence and communication with clients.

“Have they got a digital marketing strategy? Have they got the ability to handle off-hours requests?” says Reid.

Aviva Canada is also using its digital marketing consultancy team, which has visited more than 250 brokers, to determine brokers’ online capabilities. In addition, the insurer uses an automated tool to scan brokers’ various social media accounts. “We have a very good view of where brokers’ digitization is,” says Reid.

A qualified broker will also have to choose one particular brand if the business should have more than one in order to receive the discount.

Because the online platform is built to a specific brand, having more than one company name would require Sharp Mobile to build more than one app and web portal, which would be outside of the scope of this partnership with Aviva, says Sedgewick.

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