The Pluto December update

A most important month

With lots of reasons to usually be happy and celebrate in December, the launch of Pluto was certainly a fine addition for the team. After working away for 4 months, we were finally able to unveil what we’ve been doing. The feedback so far has been brilliant, both because of the positive reception, but also highlighting areas to improve, tweak and sharpen.

Any excuse for a party 🎉

We started things off in the month with our launch party, where we invited our early access sign-ups, investors, underwriters and anyone who had helped or been part of our journey so far. It was great to reflect on the last 6 months when all we had was an idea and a slide deck. The main event was a live product demo, by our Head of Product, Harry, where we bought a real policy for a lucky customer in the room!

We wrote a separate post on how we built and launched Pluto in only 4 months, you can check it out here.

Numbers don’t lie

By the end of December, after 2 weeks of being live, we had sold 99 policies (1 short of our team’s internal target!). We’re really happy with the early uptake and how it’s showing some early signs that we’re on to something! Of those policies sold, there are some interesting insights when you break it down a bit:

  • 45% of the policies sold were annual policies. This is much higher than the industry average and is an important measure for us, because, for a lot of our target audience, who travel frequently, it can be much more cost effective to buy annual cover. Educating our customers about this is really important.
  • 65% of the policies were ‘tailored’. This means that they were built by the customer, specifically for them and their trips. This is great to see that people want to spend an extra few minutes to make sure they understand what they’re getting and choose the cover that’s right for them.
  • People are choosing higher than average baggage cover, at £1,750 per policy. Which either means people really care about their stuff or our early customers like to dress to impress! We hope it’s because people are thinking about what they’re taking with them and getting the right cover.

We are slowly starting to dial up our paid marketing in January, pre-dominantly on social-media to start with. But, we’ll be following a strict experimental approach to assess the channels and content that work best. So if you see Pluto on Instagram or Facebook, give us a like!

Importance of early feedback

All founders, designers, product people and engineers will know this already. But we’re always amazed by the insights that real customers give you (outside the lab), and how willing they are to give feedback, suggestions, opinions or just say how much they enjoyed their experience. Yes, you heard that right, people saying how they actually enjoyed buying travel insurance!

Some of our favourite quotes, that are short, sweet and to the point: “That was nice, really nice” and “it’s fast, simple and easy to use”.

The feedback we’ve had already has led to numerous small updates to Pluto, on an almost daily basis. We’ve made changes to wording, layouts and even pricing. We’ll also be announcing some exciting new features soon!

The Pluto share offer

As hopefully, you will have seen on our social media or through other announcements, we launched an offer for the first 200 annual policyholders, that they will get 3 shares in our Pluto.

We did this, in short, because we want our earliest customers to be part of our journey. You can read more about it and why we did it here.

All the partners

Partnerships are growing to be an increasingly important part of our business. We’ve just gone live with 3 co-working spaces in the UK, giving their members access to discounted Pluto cover. We have some other really exciting ones that we’ll be announcing over the next few weeks, but we have to keep them a secret for now.

To date, we’ve now signed up 6 partners, that give us access to over 350k users. We also have over 15 more in the pipeline. For us, it’s all about finding companies that share our target audience and, like Pluto, are doing things differently.

We’ve launched our blog!

A big part of what Pluto aims to offer, apart from good travel cover, is good travel advice. To help people get the most out of their policy, but also the most out of their trip. Our blog will be filled with tips on how to travel smart, safe, hassle-free and also do some myth-busting on travel insurance. We’ll also be posting our company updates here from now on as well.

2019, year of the raise

As well as tons of improvements and additions to the product this year, we’re also focusing on fundraising and growing the team. We have BIG ambitions, we just need a little rocket fuel to make it happen. So this year we have a target of £1m for our seed round. This will be used to grow the team, enhance the product and acquire our target audience.

As part of this fundraising, we will be announcing our crowdfunding campaign, over the coming months, so stay tuned for more details. And, we’ll be doing a big PR push together with Zurich later this month, so with any luck, you’ll start to see Pluto in the news. Lot’s happening in January already, it’s going to be a busy year!

And finally, if you haven’t checked out the live product, what are you waiting for!



Alex

Alex

Co-founder of Pluto. Love building products and apparently travel insurance!