Playing The Insurance Game

November 14, 2011 -

AXA Equitable, a life insurance company in Farmington, Connecticut, has created a video game to introduce life insurance to women in their 40s. AXA's Pass It On! launched on the web in September and now a mobile application is heading to more portable devices. Pass It On! lets players pick an avatar and walk the streets of New York City collecting gold and avoiding expenses. The character can also buy permanent life insurance (represented in-game as a gold shield worn as a backpack) or term life (a silver shield).

Pass It On! becomes more challenging as the game progresses. New challenges and obstacles appear that can instantly kill the player. Different levels in the game are represented by different U.S. locations. After New York, players go to is St. Louis, New Orleans, Mount Rushmore and San Francisco. The game seems to be at least a moderate success, so far attracting almost 64,000 unique visitors who played it more than 231,000 times, according to the company.

The biggest draw, its creators say, is the sweepstakes linked to the game. Players can enter to win a $25,000 or $15,000 cash prize if they play between now and Dec. 31.

AXA Equitable turned to video games to reach potential customers because of the generational shift in marketing strategies. While the company sees a majority of baby boomers between the ages of 47 and 65 owning policies that provide money at death, people between the ages of 31 and 46 (Generation X) and between 19 and 30 (Generation Y) have no coverage.

"Life insurance sales are at a 50-year low," notes David O'Leary, head of AXA Equitable's financial protection segment. He gets his figures from research conducted by Windsor, CT.-based LIMRA. "Some 11 million U.S. households with children younger than 18 have no life insurance. Many of these children would face immediate financial trouble if a parent died."

Hall came up with the concept of Pass It On! while riding the Metro-North to Connecticut after a conference in New York.

"I went to a social media conference in New York about a year and a half ago, and I heard three stories there that totally inspired me," Hall said. The most impressive was a game, Mad Men Yourself, which allowed gamers to create a personality within the 1960s Madison Avenue advertising world that is the basis for the hit AMC TV series "Mad Men." The game helped propel the popularity of the show.

"They were trying to reach the same market that I am," Hall said. "They were talking about reaching the 35 to 55's. So, that got me thinking about gamification. Can you gamify life insurance?"

Source: The Hartford Courant

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Re: Playing The Insurance Game

I love life insurance.  It lets me take huge, irresponsible risks with my life since I know my wife will be taken care of if I die.

 
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MaskedPixelantehttps://twitter.com/DanSlott/status/527814374459977728 One More Shot at Marriage.10/30/2014 - 8:44am
E. Zachary KnightApparently, it is ok to review a games art on whether or not you like the style, but not ok to review a game's story or theme based on whether or not you like or agree with it.10/30/2014 - 8:40am
MechaCrashComics never change because the people in charge now read comics when they were kids, and keep reverting comics to what they remember. As long as that cycle holds, change will be slow at best.10/30/2014 - 8:18am
Neeneko@ MechaTama31 - That is the big reason fansubs were tollerated for so long in the US, japanese studios kept watch to see which ones became popular via those networks.10/30/2014 - 8:11am
quiknkoldJournalists shouldnt be bigger than the stories they report or products they review.10/30/2014 - 7:48am
E. Zachary KnightHere is some food for thought for gamergaters who want politics out of games journalism. https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20141026/06425828942/journalists-need-point-view-if-they-want-to-stay-relevant.shtml10/30/2014 - 7:18am
quiknkoldI didnt say all games are like that, Conster. Princess Peach was....different. though I had fun with it.10/30/2014 - 7:00am
james_fudgehttp://www.somethingawful.com/news/gamergate-with-cats/10/30/2014 - 5:20am
MechaTama31AE: Japan's doujin scene illustrates an interesting potential solution to that problem. Let people play around with the characters, and keep an eye on things to see what people are buying.10/30/2014 - 12:07am
ConsterI bought, played and liked the game (unlike Smash Basketball *shakes fist*), but that felt iffy to me.10/29/2014 - 10:52pm
Consterquiknkold: if Super Princess Peach had been Super Prince Peach instead, do you think emotions would've been a mechanic?10/29/2014 - 10:51pm
quiknkoldcore meaning Colossus, Storm, Wolverine, and Nightcrawler10/29/2014 - 8:51pm
quiknkoldMatthew, those core x-men were together for almost 2 decades, until one would always be dead so they couldnt have them all together.10/29/2014 - 8:51pm
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Matthew Wilsondoes it though? they always seem to return to the original cast in a year or two.10/29/2014 - 8:49pm
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Andrew EisenOne reason is because the money people are often afraid it won't sell. "A new IP AND the protagonist is gay?! That'll never work!" Showing that diverse characters can work in popular IP is simply a place to start. The indie scene is another.10/29/2014 - 8:47pm
Matthew Wilsonisnt that the point? why not just make new heroes that are different races, sexual orientations, and genders to start with?10/29/2014 - 8:46pm
Andrew EisenYep, progress is a lot slower than it should be (especially for something that shouldn't have been a problem in the first place).10/29/2014 - 8:45pm
quiknkoldrelevent. Hazmat and X-23. while Reptile, Mettle, Rockslide, Anole, Hellion, Dust, Mercury are all relegated to background characters with zero character enhancement. or they are dead10/29/2014 - 8:45pm
 

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