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Strategy & Brand

Thanks to a clear strategy and consistent brand management, Swiss Life can make its customers a long-term, solid, attractive value proposition – so that they can lead their longer lives in an assured and self-determined way.

The Swiss Life Group is one of Europe’s leading comprehensive life and pensions and financial solutions providers. Swiss Life’s success is due to a clear strategy, sound corporate values and a charismatic brand.

Swiss Life addresses a fundamental need

Self-determination and future provisions for a longer life are at the core of Swiss Life’s activities. The company thus addresses a fundamental human need: independence and self-determination are highly relevant to people, regardless of profession or status. Insurance companies like Swiss Life help make the unpredictable predictable, so that people can shape their own lives and make decisions freely.

Swiss Life operates in an environment heavily influenced by regulatory and political trends as well as by such socio-economic changes as increasing life expectancy. The social and economic consequences of demographic development thus exert a wide-ranging influence on human life, and are not to be underestimated.

Swiss Life must address changing customer behaviour and consistently implement any relevant findings arising from it to actively exploit market opportunities. Customers are ever better informed; they are able to compare services immediately and demand new products and services. New modes of access as well as the ability to receive all relevant information any time, any place are also de rigueur. As a consequence, innovation, process security and competence are the ingredients of a good customer relationship.

Clear goals and consistent implementation of Group-wide programmes

Swiss Life reports regularly on its strategic priorities and associated financial objectives. In November 2015, Swiss Life presented its current Group-wide programme, “Swiss Life 2018” (2015–2018). The Group-wide programme is based on the “Swiss Life 2015” (2012–2015) and Milestone (2009–2012) programmes, both now successfully concluded, which sustainably consolidated Swiss Life’s competitive position.

Alongside profitability, margin management and cost efficiency, disciplined asset and liability management remains central to Swiss Life’s market success. Swiss Life’s long investment duration and robust direct investment income enable it to withstand the current low interest rate environment and protect the interest margin. The investment strategy is structured so that consistent asset and liability management ensures the interest rate margin remains protected for decades. The company can thus meet its customer guarantees, even if the low interest rate environment endures over the long term.

Ahead of target for the “Swiss Life 2018” Group-wide programme

To promote quality of earnings and earnings growth, Swiss Life is prioritising four profit sources: the savings result, the risk result, the fee result and the cost result. Swiss Life will increase the resilience of its business model by continuing the expansion of its fee business. Swiss Life will continue to consistently focus all business processes on customers. In addition, within three years, Swiss Life will increase overall investment by well over CHF 100 million to further the development of the business model. Swiss Life invests in consulting, digitalisation and organic growth. Such investments include automating processes, and thus further reducing costs. Furthermore, thanks to enhanced customer centricity, it has also been possible to augment customer satisfaction and loyalty as well as the Net Promoter Score.

Swiss Life regularly provides detailed information on the current status of its strategic implementation. The company attained its target fee result in 2017, one year earlier than planned. Swiss Life is also ahead of schedule in value of new business and cash remittance to the holding company. The company is on track with its risk result and efficiency targets as well. Swiss Life achieved an adjusted return on equity of 9.3% in 2017, which was within the 8–10% target range. Swiss Life will hold an Investors’ Day on 29 November 2018 to present its new strategic targets.

“Swiss Life 2018” financial targets

Swiss Life’s product strategy is presented in the “Products and Services” chapter. In view of its varied positioning in the relevant markets, Swiss Life uses a multi-local approach: Swiss Life also reports on strategic focuses and investments by individual divisions as part of its segment information.

A charismatic brand

The success of the Swiss Life brand results from a consistent brand strategy and management. On the basis of its corporate strategy and positioning as a provider of comprehensive life and pensions and financial solutions, the Swiss Life umbrella brand, flanked by its sub-brands, provides orientation and creates confidence. The brands are assigned to various levels in a clear brand hierarchy. The strategic management of the entire brand portfolio is an element of corporate communications.

Worldwide brand protection and corporate identity

Swiss Life protects its brands around the world. It takes vigorous action in cases of brand or copyright infringement. Our customers can be sure that the Swiss Life logo and corporate name stand for Swiss Life quality and service wherever they appear.

With its brand personality and clear corporate design guidelines, Swiss Life guarantees a standardised appearance at all brand contact points. The Swiss Life brand personality always centres on the customer: “We help our customers lead a longer self-determined life with confidence.”

Brand presence featuring a robust leitmotif

The brand identity is a key instrument in making the Swiss Life brand personality tangible for internal and external target groups, and in distinguishing it from the competition.

Since 2016, Swiss Life has positioned itself Group-wide with the guiding theme “The longer self- determined life”. The consequences of demographic development are insufficiently accounted for in most areas of life. Swiss Life aims to contribute to the social dialogue through a customised content programme and position itself distinctively on the market.

Swiss Life wants to be a thought leader and help its customers to envisage, prepare for and enjoy a longer self-determined life. The topic is brought home to readers, among other places, in a blog on the website www.swisslife.com/hub/en in a series of specially conceived articles, videos, guest blogs and more. Swiss Life intends to breathe fresh life into the matter of aging, otherwise subject to negative rhetoric, and to focus on opportunities and potential in an inspiring manner, without downplaying the attendant challenges.

In the home market of Switzerland, Swiss Life focuses on sports and cultural sponsorship in addition to classical advertising. For example, the company has sponsored the Swiss national football teams for over ten years, while film is the cornerstone of its engagement in the cultural arena: Swiss Life is the main sponsor of the Solothurn Film Festival, for example.

The success of the Swiss Life brand is constantly measured on the local front by independent institutes, which review brand awareness and perception. The findings garnered are continuously used for the development and adjustment of marketing measures.

In its annual brand assessment, the Interbrand company has ranked Swiss Life among the 50 most valuable Swiss brands for many years. Moreover, during the period from 2013 to 2016, the company increased the value of its brand by more than 21%.