The Role Of Personal Selling In Enhancing Client Satisfaction In Nigerian Insurance Market
1.1 Background Of Study
A product that is well conceived and produced through the combination of the most modern technologies and the best of inputs can not sell itself. There is the need for the existence of such a product to be made known to the target market. A good or service should respond favourably to the marketing mix which will result in the full performance of any good or service in the market. However, an important element of the marketing mix is promotion, otherwise known as marketing communication. This is the element that brings the existence of a product or service to the awareness of consumers or clients. It further educates potential and actual buyers of a product on the usage, benefits, availability, price and other features of the product, which is mostly achieved through personal selling strategy. The New Zealand Qualification Authority, (2008) described personal selling as retail and wholesale activities in which a salesperson actively presents products to customers in seeking to make a sale. It could also be defined as a two-way flow of communication between a potential buyer and a salesperson that is designed to identify the potential buyer’s needs, match these needs to one or more of the firm’s products or services and convince the buyer to purchase the product.
Considering the nature of an insurance product and the way it is perceived by the general public, particularly in Nigeria, personal selling seems to be a useful promotional tool for it. Avila, Inks and Avila, (2006) argued that for years the insurance industry has placed great emphasis on personal selling and the ability of an agent to use a process to generate sales.
1.2 Statement Of Problem
Insurance, despite its socio-economic responsibility of providing cushions against risks faced by individuals and corporate organizations, Nigerians still do not consider it attractive. The sales recorded by service firms like insurance companies depend on the acceptability of the service offered. Expectedly, consumers will only accept quality products capable of satisfying their wants. The challenge faced by the Nigerian insurance firms, therefore, is how to convince the consumers of insurance service of the quality of their offerings and persuade them to buy. The Nigerian insurance industry is beset with a number of challenges (Gbede, 2003). The most challenging is the low awareness level among Nigerians coupled with the poor image that characterized the industry. Nigerians do not know anything about insurance, they do not trust insurance”. This lack of trust is linked to the inadequacy of available information.
1.3 Objective Of The Study
The main purpose of this study is to determine the role of personal selling in enhancing clients’ satisfaction in the Nigerian insurance market.
The specific objectives are outlined below.
- Examine the effectiveness of personal selling as a promotional tool for insurance services.
- To investigate if Nigerian insurance companies do use personal selling to reach their clients.
- Ascertain if insurance salespersons have contributed to the improvement of the insurance image in Nigeria.
1.4 Research Questions
This research is guided by the following questions:
- Is personal selling as a promotional tool effective in the sales and promotion of insurance products?
- Do Nigerian insurance companies use personal selling to reach their clients?
- Do insurance salespersons contribute to the improvement of the insurance image in Nigeria?
1.5 Significance Of The Study
This study will be extremely beneficial to insurance companies, stakeholders, and even sales personnel in Nigeria, as it will reveal the critical roles of personal selling strategy, as well as the need for insurance companies to implement the strategy in order to increase their sales rate. This study will further contribute to existing literature (knowledge) on the topic which is of concern to this study. As a result, the study will be invaluable to students, teachers, researchers etc.
1.6 Scope Of The Study
The scope of this study covers examining the effectiveness of personal selling as a promotional tool for insurance services, investigation into if Nigerian insurance companies do use personal selling to reach their clients and if insurance salespersons do contribute to the improvement of the insurance image in Nigeria. In view of the above, this study is hence delimited to Cornerstone Insurance company Delta State Nigeria.
1.7 Limitations Of The Study
This study is subject to the limitations and challenges that come with any research that uses questionnaires, such as noncompliance of some respondents and insufficient information about the problem under investigation. Finally, financial and time constraints were also some of the challenges that pose a lot of limitations on the scope of this study.
1.8 Definitions Of Terms
Personal selling occurs when a sales representative meets with a potential client for the purpose of transacting a sale
A company, which may be for-profit, non-profit or government-owned, that sells the promise to pay for certain expenses in exchange for a regular fee, called a premium.
This is the measurement that determines how happy customers are with a company’s products, services, and capabilities.
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