Before we even jump into this article did you know we are giving away a CRUISE on New Years Day, 2018 to a licensed agent?
Anyway on to a controversial conversation! Who doesn't love disagreeing with someone on the internet!
Recently we asked two questions in our public Facebook group, The Insurance Soup with a little hidden agenda. One thing we have learned is that when you pose questions separately that sometimes you can better gauge how an audience really feels than when you pose them together.
The first question we asked was, "Do you believe that Insurance is still a relationship based industry?"
146 comments on the post... Most of them resounding YES!!
The second question we asked was, "What percent of your book do you get together with to do an annual review?"
The answers... indicated that Agents did not really actually talk with that many of their insureds about their policies or what was going on in their lives.
Some Agents answered that they offer it to 100% of their clients but only get 10-20% to take them up on it...
Others straight up said 0% and they do not offer because they do not want to call attention to rising rates or "poke the bear"
A couple of Agents claim they sit with every client every year. 100% of the time. When asked the process to get in front of literally every last client answers were cloudy and sketchy at best.
No screenshots of that conversation because we are not looking to "out" agents. If you are in the group you can see it.
Most of you reading this, if you are honest with yourself, know you are not reviewing with the large majority of your clients.
Sometimes what we preach and what we practice are two totally different things. We know the right things to say. We know how to repeat the Kool Aid and how to speak "corporate-ese" fluently.
Truth be told though only you know in your heart of hearts how much effort is being given to meeting with your clients regularly to discuss updated needs and to deepen relationships. There is no need to even debate it because every Agent's answer is different as is every Agent's willingness to be 100% transparent and honest in their answer.
We took our research a little further and spoke with Nick Berry from Rocket Referrals - a company whose sole purpose is to help Agencies uncover the clients in their agency that would be willing to introduce their friends and family based on the way the client has felt they have been treated.
"Of all negative NPS responses the top two are lack of communication and lack of responsiveness, price is REALLY far down on the list."
They're speaking to your clients and they hear it all day every day. In most cases your clients do not know you and many struggle to get a hold of you.
I think one thing we can ALL agree on is that the "2017 client" is most of the time the one who "runs" the relationship. Things are done on their time. When they want... when they are ready.
Creating urgency is difficult in todays world. Insurance is not the sexy topic of conversation that makes someone (who feels they are covered or paying a decent price) stop their busy day to discuss.
Have you ever considered using the moment someone calls in for something on THEIR mind to leverage it for a quick review? It's easy if you lace it with a little urgency.
"Hey NAME I am so glad you called in because I think we were actually getting ready to call you. If memory serves me correct we saw a gap in your protection plan with us the other day. Let me pull up your policies since you have questions too."
Now you have them ON THE PHONE. You have them LISTENING. And you know they will hear you out because they have something THEY want to get done too.
When you pull up their profile if you are quick enough on your feet you will be able to diagnose something that will improve their protection or deepen their relationship with you on the spot.
We all know deeper relationships are less likely to peace out on the Agency.
Your sale is taking place in the name of service....
While you may not be sitting down with the client and doing the traditional review at least you are making recommendations and showing that you care when they call in.
Now do not get me wrong.
I am not suggesting you hold them hostage.
If you get resistance and the client tells you they do not care or are in a rush, put that pep in your step and get them in and get them out.
But chances are you will have a "captive audience" (See what I did there... I kept the hostage joke going) that will be open to seeing how else you can improve their risk management situation.
Weigh in below Agents!
Is the industry as "relationship" driven as we are all programmed to say it is?
Are you living up to your belief systems?
If you are what is your process? If you are not how can you chance?
Use the comments below to find or contribute additional help on this topic.
And did you enter to win the CRUISE? Geez why not?!
Consistently ranked one of the two top beards at The Insurance Soup