As the industry faces shrinking distribution, profitable growth is a top priority for life insurance executives in 2012. This is the essence of LOMA’s annual industry forecast, which includes the results of executive interviews conducted on topics such as sales, distribution, use of technology and social media, as well as the effects of regulation during the next 12 months.

LOMA is an industry group comprising life insurance professionals.

Despite several challenges facing the life insurance industry, reports LOMA’s Resource Magazine, executives anticipate opportunities in 2012.

With profitable growth on the front burner, some of the executives noted that they will need to revisit their brand and growth strategies and learn from consumer marketing experiences from outside of the industry to develop new veins for growth.

The notion that there will be fewer financial advisers offering insurance as a part of their practice, coupled with the growing trend of traditional life insurance producers entering retirement, will contribute to the industry’s distribution challenges in 2012, says the group. Like other vertical markets within the insurance industry, life insurers will need to find ways to attract and retain young, educated workers.

Contributing to the positive side, the opportunities before the industry are known, such as the growing consumer demand for retirement income solutions such as annuity lines, noted the panel.

The panel also identified technology as a key determinate of marketing and distribution success. Those technologies with the greatest potential to help the life/annuity industry grow are mobile applications, cloud computing and advanced/predictive analytics, says the group.

Pat Speer writes for Insurance Networking News, a SourceMedia publication.

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