Ambulance Victoria

Making the question of membership a ‘no-brainer’.


Ambulance Victoria’s membership scheme was losing 8,500 members a month to private health insurers, while acquisition rates fell to 4,500 a month. The resulting loss rate was putting at risk a program that contributes 25% of Ambulance Victoria’s operating budget.


Insight 1: Consumers hate exclusions on insurance policies.
Insight 2: Victorians trust the Ambulance Service (especially its paramedics) much more than a faceless insurer.
Insight 3: Consumers who don’t have cause to claim on insurance policies need reminding of their value.


Our first priority was to re-position membership as genuine cover while introducing doubt as to the exclusions applied to cover by private health funds.
We then adopted direct response modes of advertising to encourage immediate action (“It’s not enough to join. Join now!”).

We led the redesign of the customer contact process and content to deliver enhanced member conversion and retention (including the introduction of SmS renewal notices/reminders). We moved from 100% mainstream media to a 60/40 mainstream/digital engagement, achieving greater transparency, efficiency and an optimal balance of low cost-to-acquire/high cost-to-service members with their opposite profiles. We transitioned 400,000 members (over a million individuals) to low cost online communications, signups and renewals.

We did all this on 50% of the previous agency’s budget.


In the launch month of our first campaign, we added 4,000 net new members and posted a record year of net new memberships. Membership growth continues with over 70,000 net member growth in 2015. In 2015/6, we’re on track to set an even lower cost-of-acquisition benchmark, having achieved target annual membership growth in just 7 months at a campaign ROI of 1,800%.