Heyday for Older Koreans

"To execute Cigna’s business focus for customer centricity, Cigna Korea developed Heyday, which creates new value and contributes to a healthy society."


Benjamin Hong

CEO of Cigna Korea (LINA)

The senior landscape is changing rapidly. According to the recent report from the World Health Organization, the number of people ages 60 and older is expected to double by 2050 — a figure influenced by rising life expectancy and declining fertility rates. The aging population in Korea is one of the fastest growing in the world — the percentage of elderly (those persons over age 65) was 13.1 percent in 2015, and that percentage is expected to grow 37.4 percent by 2050.

Although aging presents a great burden for existing models of social support, it also represents a triumph of new opportunities for the silver economy. Aging populations have strong needs for healthy lifestyle and social activities that are currently unmet. Half of the retired population lacks a clear idea of how to spend their lengthened lifespans after retirement, primarily due to lack of support systems and information.

For the 50+ age group in Korea, Cigna Korea1 ambitiously started a membership program/service that provides a communication platform to support members’ active senior days, with a goal to become the eminent brand for that group.

Confronting recent insurance industry challenges (i.e., strengthened regulations, severe market competition, changing customer behavior), Cigna Korea recognized a way for it to differentiate itself. After a mass database leak in 2014, customers became concerned, and regulations were strengthened around privacy information. A need for an independently owned database acquisition platform — as opposed to relying on a third-party mass database exchange — was found to be a crucial factor as the next growth model. To support customers to make the purchasing decisions themselves, Cigna Korea had to hold a stronger brand, offering differentiated benefits to support their choice. This is how we came up with the idea of an engagement platform for the age 50+ population.

Heyday2 offers its members owned and curated content, good and services provided via affinity partners and is developing customized insurance plans. To enforce Heyday’s position in holistically supporting its members’ well-being — social well-being, lifestyle and travel, and financial security — we will continue to build membership benefits to enhance members’ experience and interaction with Heyday.

For Cigna Korea, Heyday is an emerging new DTC (Direct To Customer) channel to secure its own membership base, reducing potential risks around privacy information, and to serve as a platform to acquire loyal and qualified prospects cost-effectively.

Heyday is a new initiative with great customer-engagement potential. (1) Heyday offers discount services for health checkups and free samples from top-market players. (2) Heyday’s owned media — its online contents platform as well as its offline magazine — provides meaningful engagement with sponsors and key opinion leaders in the country. (3) Heyday coordinates diverse offline community events for target’s healthy life, for social contribution and participation. (4) In partnership with Korail, Korea’s official train business line under Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport, Heyday offers member-exclusive transportation cards. The Korail deal includes transportation passes and parking lot and car/bicycle sharing discount services.

Cigna’s corporate vision is “to help the people we serve improve their health, well-being, and a sense of security.” To execute Cigna’s business focus for customer centricity, Cigna Korea developed Heyday, which creates new value and contributes to a healthy society. Heyday is off to a good start and aspire for Heyday to grow as an eminent brand for the 50+ Koreans. 

1. Cigna Korea(LINA) is part of the Cigna Corporation, a global health service company with more than 220 years of experience, holding more than 86 million customers in over 30 countries. Cigna Korea is a life insurance company in Korea, with expertise in innovative products and TM business with sustainable growth.
2. Heyday is a membership program/service Cigna Korea offers for the age 50+, to support the well-being of members holistically in health, social well-being, lifestyle and travel, and financial security.

About the author
Ben Hong as CEO of LINA(Cigna Korea) has successfully led years of business growth and expansion as an innovative market leader. He brings 30 years of diverse, multi-national business experience in the financial services industry, including Sun Life Financial, MetLife, and Prudential,  with a primary focus on the global insurance marketplace. Ben attended Baruch College, The City University of New York, USA, where he earned a Bachelors of Business Administration degree in marketing management and a Masters of Business Administration degree in Finance.


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