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Independence Blue Cross and Relay take a radical approach to mobile and see results

In less than one year, 200,000 members connect with insurer through new mobile channel

Radnor, PA – Independence Blue Cross (Independence), the region’s leading health insurer, announced today that in one year nearly 200,000 of its members have chosen to participate in the company’s mobile communication program, IBX Wire®. Powered by Relay (, a technology company that connects brands and people through direct mobile communication, IBX Wire allows for ongoing, personalized communications between the insurer and its members through a secure and HIPAA-compliant channel.

Through Relay’s platform, Independence has rapidly accelerated its mobile opt-ins and created an effective line of communication that helps members stay in control and make better decisions about their health care. Launched in 2013, IBX Wire puts the health information of Independence members at their fingertips via their smartphones and helps them maximize benefits, such as free nutrition counseling sessions. In less than one year, the health insurer has tripled response rates achieved through email and direct mail, and significantly increased utilization of its digital assets, including web content and videos.

Based on the initial success of this program, Independence and Relay expanded the technology to help educate and engage consumers throughout the region to understand the changes driven by the Affordable Care Act. IBX Wire provided consumers with an easy way to get more information, reach a specialist, or enroll in a health plan and improved Independence’s ability to personally connect with individuals through a direct-to-consumer channel. The technology guided consumers through the plan options and allowed the health insurer to re-engage them at critical times throughout the health plan selection process.

“Mobile technology has become increasingly important in the way we get things done in our daily lives. It is also a vital component of our continued efforts to meet the evolving needs of our members,” said Paula Sunshine, Independence vice president, sales and marketing, Consumer Business. “With IBX Wire, we’re making it dramatically easier for our members to interact with us, and it’s working. We can now get important health information — such as health screening reminders — in front of our members and get a response from them within minutes.”

Relay provides the first network where brands and people can connect effortlessly for the purpose of getting things done, whether that means completing transactions, staying up to date on mission critical information, or getting the support they need. Relay connects brands and their customers through a unique, web-based communication channel that uses text messages to deliver the channel right to the customer’s mobile phone. Unlike mobile apps that require downloads, weren’t built for communication, and typically have low adoption, Relay gives businesses a new alternative that takes the friction out of creating a mobile connection with customers. With Relay, businesses invite customers into their own mobile channel, and customers accept that invitation with one click. Once connected, both sides have a faster and easier way to communicate that meets privacy and security standards.

“Independence Blue Cross recognized that in order to win the race to mobile, it needed to do something completely different,” said Matt Gillin, CEO of Relay. “Rather than viewing connections as social follows, app adoptions, or text subscribers, it created its own channel on Relay that allowed it to establish a private line of communication with every single customer. It’s a radically different approach to mobile and it’s made a big difference for Independence. It now has wide scale adoption into a mobile channel that delivers unmatched results and flexibility.”

About Independence Blue Cross
Independence Blue Cross is the leading health insurer in southeastern Pennsylvania. With our affiliates, we serve more than 8.2 million people in 24 states and the District of Columbia. For more than 75 years, we have been enhancing the health and wellness of the people and communities we serve by delivering innovative and competitively priced health care products and services; pioneering new ways to reward doctors, hospitals, and other health care professionals for coordinated, quality care; and supporting programs and events that promote wellness. To learn more about how we’re changing the game, visit Connect with us on Facebook at and on Twitter at @ibx. Independence Blue Cross is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

About Relay

Relay is a technology company that connects trusted brands with people through direct mobile communication so they can effortlessly get stuff done. We help businesses and organizations get and keep more customers by making it easy for people to interact with them. When brands and people connect on Relay, they activate their own private mobile channel designed for action. Over 1 million people every month use Relay to connect with companies within healthcare, financial services, insurance, energy, travel and hospitality. Headquartered in greater Philadelphia, PA, Relay is backed by NewSpring Capital, First Round Capital, and ICG. For more information, visit or connect with Relay on Facebook at and on Twitter at @Relayit. Relay, Relay Wire, and Wire are trademarks and service marks of Relay Network, LLC.

Media contact
Kathleen Conlon