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AIA Singapore has launched a digital rewards program called Vitality for every insured customer. Basically the concept is very positive. They want to reward you for being healthy and ask you to track your behaviour online.

How this is being done is open to question though with some serious gaps in the program and some questionable creative.

AIA Vitality is apparently a “science-backed wellness programme that works to make real change to your health” so the blurb goes.

Customers earn Vitality Points by engaging in a number of activities focused on helping them know more about their health and improving it. Singaporean residents can earn Vitality Points for healthy activities such as gym, physical exercise, buying Healthy Food items and stopping smoking etc.

They can check how they're doing at any time on their account on the website.

All sounds good in practice. However a recent trip to their retail partner Cold Storage showed how far this has to go. I can understand gaining points on smoked salmon for example but they were also rewarding people for buying chocolate!

Fruit and vegetables seemed to be only half of the items rewarded and you would have thought that most of the focus, reward points and branding would be here. However there was no reward points highlighted for healthy avocado for example.

I can’t see how rewarding people for buying unhealthy chocolate is going to improve their health rather than encouraging them to buy fruit and vegetables. Even the creative for the program itself is unhealthy as it shows very brightly coloured cupcakes rather than healthy fruit and vegetables.

The online rewards program seems to lack the ability to track actual healthy activity, which as everyone knows is key to being healthy. You don’t lose weight and become healthier by diet alone.

Rewarding physical exercise is key but how do you do this with activities that are seemingly not tracked by AIA like running and cycling away from a gym and outside which many Singaporean residents do in mornings and evenings. Why not team up with someone like Endomondo or Nike Plus to track all activities directly to your account online?

Although AIA has teamed up with True Fitness and Yoga and you receive points for attending every session, both these gyms are quite small. Surely it should be applicable for all fitness venues?

AIA also says that you get extra points for attending organised fitness events but the website doesn’t say which ones or how these are redeemed and tracked to your online account.

There are organised fitness events every week in Singapore, but currently you don’t appear to be able to be rewarded for participating in any of them which diminishes the benefits you could gain as the training for these events is key to losing weight and becoming healthier.

AIA also appears to have very few brand partners. Adidas is an obvious one as is Cold Storage (if they focused on fruit and veg for example rather than chocolate and snacks) but Cathay Cinemas seems a less obvious fit. Sitting around eating popcorn isn’t a very healthy option and use of your time.

Air Asia, Emirates and Royal Caribbean Cruises are also partners, however it's unlikely that people will return to them for repeat purchases. How many times are you going to buy a long haul flight or cruise and how healthy are either?

AIA is also missing someone like the Singporean Health Promotion Board as a holistic partner. They could also have brought in local trades union NTUC venues as well as more private venues and healthier FMCG brands.

Also what about lunch? That is one of the worst times for Singaporeans to eat the wrong kind of diet. It’s of course custom that everyone eats out at lunch and often in food centres, hawker centres and fast food outlets which are often unhealthy in nature.

Where are the rewards for choosing healthier options like Salad Stop or even the healthy subs in Subway which are a Health Promotion Board partner for example? It’s a great vision that AIA has but with an unhealthy execution.

Chris Reed

Published 23 May, 2014 by Chris Reed

Chris Reed is CEO and founder of Black Marketing Asia and a contributor to Econsultancy. You can connect with him via LinkedIn.

6 more posts from this author

Comments (2)

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asit

excellent analysis Chris. good idea which can do with more integrated and holistic partnership marketing to create a genuine win - win. In the absence of that feels like the usual marketing effort. next year will see another new scheme and campaign.

almost 2 years ago

Chris Reed

Chris Reed, CEO & Founder at 423651

Thanks for sharing Asit

almost 2 years ago

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