On meeting a stranger we have one fundamental question – are they friend or foe? And everything that follows is based on the decision we make.

For this reason, insurers, banks and financial planners need to avoid an overture to potential customers that creates suspicion. These interactions ­are generally characterised by obfuscation and, therefore, confusion, and lead to misunderstandings and misplaced customer expectations.

Obscure language promotes doubt, and doubt leads to hesitation and fear of engagement, which, in turn, creates suspicion. If you accept that trust is the most valuable brand asset any insurer, bank or financial planner can own then the marketing case for plain English contracts is self-evident. After all, it takes years for a brand to build trust but only a whiff of suspicion to erode it.

Plain English consumer contracts present information that people can understand and act on with confidence. They can put your brand beyond all reasonable doubt and, therefore, beyond the mortal threat that suspicion poses.

Drawing on his 15 years of experience as a plain English editor and writer, and using real examples of his recent work with Australia’s biggest banks, insurance companies and financial institutions like CGU Insurance and NAB, Andrew Pegler will present the compelling marketing case for plain English contracts. 

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