Peace of mind is an important sentiment for human beings. We all want to know that if something goes awry, we have a protective cushion to fall back on. That's why we buy insurance policies and warranties, allowing us to rest with the assurance that we're protected in the case of catastrophes.

However, not everyone who purchases insurance policies fully understands their options of protecting their purchases, often leaving additional revenue from purchasing added coverage on the table.

Minnesota-based Polaris, a manufacturer of snowmobiles, all terrain vehicles, and neighborhood electric vehicles, was facing this problem. This was exacerbated since many transactions took place between customers and third parties, meaning that Polaris itself often didn't come in contact with the customers. Even the Polaris dealers themselves didn't readily offer customers the extended warranty, notes Kelly Clawson, financial services manager at Polaris. This was a missed revenue opportunity, as extended warranty purchases would not only benefit customers, but also the dealers who would increase their profits when vehicles are brought in for services during the warranty period.

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Polaris wanted to make sure that each customer who bought one of its vehicles fully understood the benefits provided by an extended warranty. "We wanted every customer to get a notification to purchase an extended warranty," Clawson says.

Although Clawson's three-strong team was doing its utmost to reach out to customers through postcards to explain the extended warranty cost and coverage options, conversion rates remained lackluster and the company wanted to improve these efforts. In order to lift its figures, Polaris teamed with Fulcrum to implement an extended warranty program.

 

Results

Clawson explains that with the help of Fulcrum, Polaris is able to better target its direct mail program, using customer data to determine the best time to reach out to a particular client through its direct mailings. To make it easier for customers to purchase extended warranties, Polaris includes a link in its mailings, enabling clients to go directly online to find more information and options to purchase the extended warranty. Clawson says the web link has contributed to increase conversion rates.

While Clawson was unable to share the conversion rates, she points out that they have doubled since the company implemented the new program. Further, the company is giving added value to its customers by keeping them informed of the benefits of purchasing an extended warranty and reminding them to buy it. "The customers have a higher level of satisfaction," Clawson says.

 

Lessons Learned

Use data to target customers: By sending customers relevant information at the right time, organizations are more likely to make a sale.

Keep clients informed: Customers want to hear about the benefits of a particular purchase.

Simplify transactions: Allowing customers to make a purchase online will improve their experience and also reduce contact center calls.