Back Me Up is an insurance company and app for 17-49 year olds.

The service is a masterpiece of marketing and design for younger customers.

Here’s why…

1. Information pyramid / visual saliency

The Back Me Up website has a really clear proposition, never in danger of reaching information overload.

To do this, it uses a long explainer page with plenty of white space, high-contrast sizeable text, pictures and iconography.

In terms of conveying information, the page doesn’t walk before it can run. Think of it as a pyramid, with less information given at the top and more as you move through the signup process.

Very cleverly, there is some content that is extremely useful but is nevertheless tucked away in a little JavaScript foldout, available to users when they are ready to click (see an example below).

This streamlines the core messaging on the page.

The ‘See here how Back Me Up compares with other insurances’ section is tucked away to improve salience of homepage. 

back me up homepage 

The homepage serves to hold the customer’s hand and talk them through the service slowly. It’s not a question of digesting lots of size 10 font.

The saliency is further improved by some neat and large subheaders – ‘How it works’, ‘Core cover’, ‘Bolt ons’.

back me up subheaders

Compare this ‘information pyramid’ approach with a more traditional insurer’s website, also presenting information about personal posessions insurance.

Below I’ve included screenshots of Co-op Insurance and Direct Line.

Neither are terrible, but they both hit the customer with much more information right from the get go, with smaller font and much less clarity.

Of course, Co-op and Direct Line both offer many more products and don’t have the luxury of such as refined proposition, but the point about information architecture still stands.

Contrast with a more traditional insurer such as Coop (top) and Direct Line (bottom)

coop insurance

direct line insurance

2. Life through a lens

Customers must photograph their stuff in order to insure it.

The idea of photographing the items one wants to insure is inspired. Millennials instinctively relate to snap and share culture.

Photos can be uploaded via the Back Me Up website, though it’s the app that really captures the imagination. Taking photos on mobile is about as close to intuitive as it gets for younger users.

Of course, this benefits the insurer, too, as pictoral evidence provides extra information with which to validate a claim.

While multichannel marketing is still relevant (integrating nicely with web, email and direct mail), the more of the signup process a finance brand can bundle into a mobile app, the more younger users will take to it.

This is truly mobile-first design.

my stuff

3. Video explainers

This is probably my favourite part of the site. There are a number of videos embedded throughout, explaining parts of the service.

They are superbly scripted and presented, pitched neither too high or too low. This video content is something financial services brands could learn a lot from.

Here’s an example…

4. Language

We’ve mentioned already the simple subheaders, but the brand goes much further in its copy, using colloquial/informal language to make everything easier to understand.

It’s easy to read this copy and hear David Brent in your head, but when this language is in the context of the full webpage, it makes the content easier to scan.

‘Stuff’

stuff

‘Chill’

chill

‘Join us’

join us

‘Tell your mates’

tell your mates

‘Don’t freak out’

don't freak out

‘When things go wrong’

when things go wrong

5. Bold aesthetic

The big blue colours, the chunky iconography – there isn’t any new service that isn’t confidently branded any more.

It was mobile that kickstarted this revolution of bold and flat design, and it’s a visual language that younger users innately trust.

6. Sharing/community

The Back Me Up website has a fairly prominent community section, and everybody who joins the service already has a username with which they are identified.

Okay, forums are nothing new, but positioning this community at the heart of the service helps to instill almost a co-op feel.

There’s something of the spirit of Airbnb in these conversations, where new customers can ask old timers anything they want.

Contribution is even gamified with a score assigned to each contributor.

community

Conclusion

There is so much to learn here:

  • unbundling/rebranding of a product (Back Me Up was created by parent group Ageas).
  • clearly-defined target audience.
  • clarity of proposition.
  • beautifully honest explainer videos.
  • incorporation of selfie/smartphone culture.
  • non-sanitised language.

Hat tip to Back Me Up.