Cultivating an Exceptional Customer Experience at Farmers Insurance

For Melissa Joye, cultivating an exceptional customer experience is chief among her goals at Farmers Insurance.

This month Joye was named Chief Customer Experience Officer at Farmers Insurance, one of the largest multiline insurer groups in the country.

The newly created position will help define and implement an enterprise-wide customer experience vision to help drive customer loyalty and retention while creating a truly differentiated experience for customers. Joye comes to Farmers Insurance from American Express where she served as vice president of the strategic planning group that helped drive thought leadership of cross-functional projects. Prior to that, she served as a principal at Bain & Company, in addition to other roles throughout the years with other prominent business management and financial service organizations.

Farmers Insurance serves more than 10 million households with over 19 million individual policies, across all 50 states, through the efforts of more than 48,000 exclusive and independent agents and approximately 21,000 employees. 

Joye talked to Loyalty360 about her new position.

CX is seen as a key differentiator these days among loyalty marketers. It can be even trickier in the insurance business. Can you talk about how you can elevate and magnify the personal customer experience at Farmers Insurance?

Joye: At Farmers Insurance, we’re continually looking at new methods to empower our agents to help create truly differentiated experiences for our customers. Whether it’s providing them with new technology or intuitive data, we want to ensure our agents can better understand what our customers expect from their insurance provider and deliver a faster, more efficient and more personalized level of service. We are regularly listening to our customers’ feedback and seeking ways to help improve their experience across all touch points with the organization. I know cultivating an exceptional customer experience is deeply rooted in understanding how and when the customer chooses to interact with your brand.

What is being done well, with regards to CX, in the insurance industry and where do the challenges lie?

Joye: Having just joined the organization, my initial observations are that many insurance providers have been solely focused on building brand recognition. There are real opportunities to tap into common life “episodes”, such as buying a home, getting married, or having children that can reach consumers in unique ways. These life experiences are all factors that providers can use to leverage to help cultivate brand loyalty. There are a lot of opportunities to address the overall customer experience and we are committed to being among the leaders in continuing to deliver our best for customers.

What are your goals for customer experience at Farmers Insurance and from a customer engagement perspective?

Joye: At Farmers Insurance, we believe in delivering smart customer experience. Every time a customer interacts with the brand, we want them to come away feeling smarter about insurance and better prepared for the future. We understand that customers want their insurance provider to be proactive, straightforward, and to utilize our years of experience to provide personalized knowledge to help protect what matters most to them. Capitalizing on the advantages of 89 years in business, Farmers Insurance is leveraging transformation to help accelerate the delivery of new products and services that today’s customers want–and expect–from their insurance provider.

At Farmers Insurance, what are you most proud of?

Joye: What we are most proud of is our continued efforts to create a truly differentiated experience for our customers. One that keeps the personal agent and customer relationships Farmers is known for and adds the benefits of new processes and technology to deliver simplicity, speed, and efficiency in every encounter.

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