Next Insurance launches Facebook Messenger chatbot

Digital small business insurance company Next Insurance has launched a new insurance chatbot that allows people to quote and buy insurance on Facebook Messenger.

Developed with chatbot developer SmallTalk, the tool makes Next Insurance the first company to offer full-service insurance on a social media channel.

Of all areas of finance, insurance is probably the latest digital entrant and that has consequences, Next Insuance cofounder and CEO Guy Goldstein said.

“Small business owners are uniquely vulnerable to litigation, yet the insurance services on offer are shockingly inadequate. From being improperly priced to failing to account for fundamental needs, there is something broken in small business insurance, and we’re excited to be utilizing digital channels to solve it.

“Seventy per cent of our customers are buying insurance on their phones. Enabling customers to buy insurance through a chatbot on Facebook Messenger brings simplicity, transparency and easy access. We’re making sure that insurance is working for the small business owner and not the reverse.”

SmallTalk worked with Next Insurance to identify where bots could produce revenue and increase efficiency. Bot usage is in its early stages, SmallTalk’s Alex Kaplinsky said.

“Bots are the future of communication for businesses that prioritize the customer experience and we’re excited to see the impact this technology can have in the insurance sector. Next is bringing a powerful digital approach to an industry that desperately needs it, and it is an incredible testament to the power of bot technology to redefine the way we view and engage with some of the largest and most traditional industries.”