Here we go again, rounding out another year. As most of us move into the fourth quarter of each year, we try and wrap up loose ends and set plans for the next year; always knowing all plans need to be flexible but some things we’d love to be constant. Renewals, Retention, and Recruitment are some of the items we’d love to see set in stone. But as we know, not always the easiest to achieve.
When I think about Renewals, I think about the insurance solutions that don’t have to be recreated year-after-year. In my world, most of those solutions fall under your health license. I know saying “health” makes some of us shudder but it shouldn’t. I’m not talking about jumping into the major medical health insurance field, although more and more agents are getting back into that space. What I am referring to is Disability Income (DI), Medicare, Critical Illness (CI) and Long-Term Care Insurance (LTCi) solutions. I might also suggest having product solutions that don’t require re-selling every year. With these clients, annual reviews highly important. Medicare must be looked at every year, and DI requires review in the event of income changes and other key life factors.
That segways easily into Retention. I think with the word retention, we often think of retention of staff and that’s possibly a struggle with so much of the workforce changing career paths. But what I’m referring to is retention of clients. This is critical for your book of business. Growth comes from retention and adding new clients. Performing annual reviews is one way to maintain your client’s loyalty. Not to belabor the health license, but with Disability Income, Medicare, Critical Illness and Long-Term Care insurances, these solutions really should have a review. All you can do is explain the purpose and why it’s important, your clients will tell you if they want to purchase the insurance. But if we fail to open their eyes to potentially solvable risks, that’s on us. Now, presenting all solutions at one time isn’t the most prudent option. Especially if you are selling during the Medicare Freeding Frenzy (AEP). You must be aware of what can and can not be talked about. If you think about it, with selling DI, CI, LTCi and Medicare, you are setting yourself up for renewability. I’ve written an article in the past titled “Go F#*% Yourself”, referring to how GoFundMe is a form of charity and not a form of insurance. With DI and CI, you are potentially selling to a younger demographic and staying in touch with them allows you to help them transition into the other solutions as life needs change like LTCi and Medicare.
So, the hardest thing for most is Recruitment and I like to call that prospecting. Where do you get new prospects? Are you someone that likes leads? Are you established enough that you work on referrals (everyone’s goal!). Are you great on the phone and setting appointments? There are many ways to prospect. I personally like to visit with the agent and find their natural market(s). I lovingly tell them I would rather set them on a path to success than have them chase parked cars. Nice image huh?! Some folks I work with have books of business, maybe they are a Property & Casualty agency, and they just need a trusted agent to come in and work their book for certain product lines. This sounds like a goldmine but remember there is a lot on the line here and they don’t just let anyone in. For the most part, these have to be independent P&C agencies. I have had some luck with captive agencies that are allowed to sell outside their carrier’s products if they don’t offer them. Again, typically Medicare, DI, and LTCi. The RIA fee only space is something I see emerging more often. With that, they are letting their insurance license expire but still want to round out and offer important insurance solutions to their clients as they see fit. Again, LTCi being the top of that list. They look to me to help them find the right fit for their advisors that they can refer their clients and monitor progress.
I think with everything mentioned above, how closely do you work with your BGA/FMO? They are approached weekly from agents wanting someone to buy their book, to work with and split commissions, or just keep your name top of mind, so when an opportunity arises, your name comes to mind!
I hope the fourth quarter of 2022 finds your year as being successful in however you measure success and I wish you the best for 2023 and Happy Selling! – Angie
For more Industry News and Tips and Resources regarding Long-Term Care,
Reach out to Angie Hughes.