April 10, 2015

In-depth: Hannah Fisher, MORE TH>N

Hannah Fisher is Head of Marketing at MORE TH>N. She tells us how the online insurer manages its digital mix and discusses some of the challenges and opportunities the organisation faces this year

What does your role as Head of Marketing at MORE TH>N involve on a daily or weekly basis?

I manage MORE TH>N’s marketing with overall responsibility for all areas of advertising, brand, performance, planning and customer documentation.

Since joining MORE TH>N in 2012, I have been on a mission to transform our approach to marketing communications and ultimately make MORE TH>N a leader in data-driven digital communications. Optimising OUR approach to drive an uplift in brand and acquisition performance and create a best-in-class marketing team have been key focuses. To deliver on this I have concentrated on three main areas: unifying the team and communications plan; upskilling people—both in-house and agency partners; and transforming our channel mix and driving innovation.

This focus has resulted in MORE TH>N hitting sales targets whilst delivering record-breaking cost-per-sales, as well as adding new digital channels to marketing plans.

It’s a really exciting time to be working FOR MORE TH>N, and my marketing team, agencies and I are passionate about what we can achieve in 2015. We have some very exciting digital opportunities on our roadmap this year.

What are likely to be the most significant challenges and opportunities facing MORE TH>N over the next 12 months?

From a marketing perspective, we will continue to deliver on our ambition to become a leader in data-driven digital communications. This a significant opportunity for MORE TH>N but equally it comes with significant challenges. Using data to drive informed marketing decisions is not a new phenomenon, but using data to drive results across multiple data-driven channels and trying to join the dots in a meaningful way, is.

How do you see the digital insurance sector developing over the next year or so?

The insurance industry is moving quickly into the digital era. The traditional methods of filling in forms and paper-based applications are rapidly being replaced with real-time, digital, mobile sales and service offerings. Innovation and digital adoption are driving a different type of consumer expectation and behaviour that the industry has not seen before. Those companies that are able to offer their customers an omni-channel experience, using data and technology to better personalise their offerings and deliver a great customer service will shine over the next few years.

Who or what are some of your favourite sources of insight or inspiration in the field of digital media/marketing? Are there any writers, speakers or thinkers you admire?

I am a keen supporter in the power of our marketing network and a big believer in the benefits of attending industry groups and seminars to inspire and be inspired. These groups enable marketers to keep connected with industries outside of their own and help inspire trial and adoption in their own fields.

I am an executive member of the ISBA (The Voice of British Advertisers) board and The Marketing Society, and regularly attend their speaker events and other digital and marketing conferences throughout the year. These events provide me with the opportunity to meet many inspirational leaders across a diverse range of organisations and to continually learn and evolve my thinking.

What was your first job in the marketing industry and how have things changed since then?

I started my marketing career many years ago as a marketing assistant in a chartered accountancy firm based in my hometown. I was responsible for their customer communications and events and also led a brand/logo change which I’m pleased to say they are still using today!

The main differences to note over the last decade are rooted in digital technology and how this is used to communicate with your customers. Back in the day, I used to manage manual mail-merges to our customers with no option to email and mobile wasn’t even on the radar.

Today we operate in a complex, digital, fast-paced, time-poor environment and we need to ensure we communicate with our customers in the way they have told us they would like us to.

Is there any advice you wish you’d had (or heeded) at the start of your career in marketing?

The power of your marketing community and network is invaluable and is something that I wish that I had tapped into earlier in my career. I would encourage all marketers to become active in their communities and reach out and connect with others. You never know who you will meet or what you will learn and you will have lots of laughs along the way.

Which other brands’ marketing strategies do you admire and why?

I’m a big fan of Airbnb and admire their phenomenal success; they launched around five years ago and have served something like 11 million guests. They have created a consumer-led, digital proposition that self-regulates and creates a real sense of camaraderie within its own community.

I love to ski and this year we chose to book with Crystal Ski. I was very impressed with their customer communications programme. We were sent a succession of timely and relevant emails before our holiday with strong and relevant content. Content is a hot topic for us all at the moment and I felt that Crystal Ski have got this just right for their skiing community.