The evolution of a global insurance brand

Feb 21, 2024

Five marketing rules we live by to drive the Unisure brand to the top

While many of us think of brands as static identities that never change, the truth is that they are constantly evolving and fine-tuning their voice, values and behaviour. This happens as the business behind the brand matures, inviting product and purpose to partake in a delicate dance between establishing who they are and what they do differently to everyone else, all within an ever-changing environment.

Loura Joubert, Head of Marketing at The Unisure Group, has been championing the Unisure brand for over 6 years now. While it’s true that the essence of Unisure is unwavering in its drive to deliver international policies to globally mobile individuals and organisations, the company is entering its 11th year of business and setting its sights higher than ever.

With this growth and development comes the inevitable strategic evolution and repositioning of the Unisure brand; a task that will certainly make 2024 a landmark year for our Marketing and Business Development teams.

“It’s an incredibly exciting time in our business,” Loura says. “Looking back on our brand’s life cycle, I’m proud to say that we’ve made huge progress in introducing ourselves to the market and growing our brand awareness. Although we still have a long way to go in establishing ourselves internationally as a household name, this year we’re really going to be honing our international health and life insurance marketing and product focus, strongly punting what makes our proposition so unique, and refining our brand’s purpose and values to speak more directly to our target audiences.”

It goes without saying that growing a global insurance brand from the ground up comes with many lessons hard learnt. As the brand looks ahead to an ambitious 3-year strategic business plan, we asked Loura to share her insights on the journey thus far and her top five ‘rules to lives by’ when marketing a global brand… 

1. Don’t try to be everything to everyone.

Some of Unisure’s biggest competitors have been in the insurance game for over 170 years. To compete with them head-to-head for the same slice of the market would be futile. Instead, Loura explains, Unisure approaches its marketing strategy from the point of exploiting its niche and speaking to what makes the company and its offerings truly unique.

“We cannot be everything to everyone, which is why we need to focus on what we call ‘our magic’,” she explains. “One of the biggest selling points that make Unisure so unique is our dedication to personalised customer service. Offering that to a client base in over 110 countries around the world involves tremendous dedication and a company-wide commitment to truly be there for our members anywhere and anytime. Altruism isn’t just a brand pillar in our marketing campaign, it’s entrenched in our values and it’s a part of every conversation we have and every business transaction we conduct. That’s where our magic lies, and that’s the message we focus on sharing with the global market.”

2. Leverage off local knowledge and partnerships to gain credibility and authenticity.

“A big part of Unisure’s successful international expansion is rooted in having people on the ground in numerous countries to gain a deeper understanding of the local market’s nuances,” Loura says. “Paying heed to language barriers and cultural sensitivities is critical when planning a marketing campaign, and coming up with a successful localisation strategy can be especially challenging when you don’t have an employee or team based in the country to provide context.”

“The same goes for partnering with credible, trusted local insurers that share in our values and purpose. In our experience, this has been vital, not only for our Business Development Managers dealing with the local regulators, but for our Marketing team in understanding how we can and cannot co-brand and position the Unisure brand in the market.”

Seek out and partner with organisations who share your values or who can augment your business to better serve your customers, globally or locally. Remember the adage: If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.

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3. Be flexible and keep adapting.

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is getting overly confident with your market position and falling into a comfort zone as a result, Loura explains.

“The advantage of being a global company with an international product range is that you have a number of different markets to play in,” she says. “At the same time, however, the challenge that comes with that is that each country needs a unique strategy that speaks to that country’s specific regulations, cultures, social economic circumstances, and so on.”

“This is especially true of Africa where a digital-first approach doesn’t always elicit the best results. The lesson we’ve learned over the years is that we need to be adaptable and flexible to new ideas and strategies all the time. It’s certainly keeping us on our toes, but we’re loving the ride,” she says with a smile. 

4. Give your employee advocacy strategy time to develop.

It’s a well-known fact that getting your employees involved in your marketing strategy is a winner for any company. Why? Because brand messages are re-shared 24 times more frequently when distributed by employees through employee advocacy versus the brand (Business2Community).

“We started an employee advocacy strategy within Unisure a few years back with a lot of enthusiasm, but quickly learned that roping your colleagues into your marketing efforts takes time and a lot of motivating,” Loura shares. “It’s not something you can force – in fact, it’s something that generally comes more naturally and authentically as your company culture is reinforced and your internal brand becomes integral to every part of how you do business.” 

5. Take a data-driven approach to your strategies.

“One significant advantage of being a global brand is that there’s a lot of data that can be drawn from your campaigns all over the world,” Loura explains. “But the data is only valuable if you analyse it and learn from it. By that I mean using the stats to set internal goals and benchmarks, studying what works (and what doesn’t) in certain regions, and perhaps most importantly, creating a ‘bank’ of hard-earned consumer insights that can inform future campaigns and strategies.”

A global brand will never stop learning, evolving and continuously refining its approach to ensure that it remains relevant in the rapidly changing global landscape we find ourselves in. Watch this space to see how the Unisure brand evolves this year.

For more information on Unisure and its product offerings, visit