Case Study



Just after the roll-out of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), our client – a major health insurance carrier – wanted help prioritizing the opportunity with the uninsured market. At the time, millions of Americans were still uninsured and were either seeking care by paying out-of-pocket or were not seeking care at all.

The uninsured population represented a very large opportunity for our client, but many had been slow to enroll.  Our client wanted to better understand and prioritize the uninsured opportunity.


The challenge was to stratify the market of uninsured (which at the time was around 30 million Americans) to determine the most promising prospects as well as message areas to help convert them to individual insurance.


C+R conducted a multi-phase study which included qualitative synthesis of prior research, a quantitative pilot study and large-scale segmentation with built-in study halls. 

Our client’s first step was to undertake a qualitative exploration of needs and experiences among uninsured Americans from a variety of backgrounds, including ethnic minorities. Interviews were conducted one-on-one (in-person and via phone).

Together with our client, we created attribute lists of the attitudes, beliefs and behaviors that were expressed in the qualitative interviews. These lists were refined to eventually become the main input into our segmentation model.

We then ran a large-scale segmentation with 1,000+ uninsured consumers to identify how our health insurance client could relate its brand messaging to each segment’s unique attitudes and need states.

The underlying assumption of segmenting consumers is that the population is heterogeneous, and we can “discover” patterns in attitudes by applying a statistical methodology to separate the population into distinct, homogeneous subpopulations based on differences in these variables. In this study, we defined groups of people who have similar attitudes toward being uninsured, becoming insured and actively managing their health.

The attitudinal segmentation solution was built from the following questions:

  • Please indicate which one statement best describes your reasons and which statement least describes your reasons for GOING WITHOUT health insurance.
  • Please indicate which one statement best describes your reasons and which statement least describes your feelings toward BECOMING INSURED.

The segmentation culminated with an in-person presentation and in-depth workshop at the conclusion of the study to integrate information within the organization. The client was provided with a segmentation typing tool as well as smaller mini decks to disseminate within the organization.

The result

This research uncovered an actionable strategy to effectively target and message to the most promising prospects. The research also provided insight into plan ideas that resonate most with the target segments.

  • Educating Older Adults: Older consumers, and those with chronic conditions, had the greatest interest in obtaining insurance but also tended to be the most scared, confused or frustrated and need help making sense of the plans. 
  • Attracting Healthy Millennials: Two segments of Millennials were potential prospects for our client, but the healthiest Millennials tended to procrastinate and did not see much value or urgency in becoming insured.
  • Understanding the Hispanic Point-of-View: Less acculturated Hispanics tended to self-medicate with homeopathic remedies and were more likely to avoid going to the doctor or hospital for care. They were high priority but hardest to reach with traditional messaging.


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