What is the core value proposition of an independent agent to the marketplace?
As customers of Insurtech, let’s take a look at the overwhelming asks of agencies WITHIN the IA channel. It is easy to see based on the companies gaining traction in the space that agencies are asking for faster, easier, more efficient ways to get things done. Faster ways to quote, easier ways to bind, better tools to drive new business into your agency.
When you look at any system, the equation is going to be about the same; a compilation of input (effort) turning into a corresponding output (results). This is no exception when it comes to doing business in the insurance industry. The proverbial totem pole is measured by success when it comes to producers, agencies, and carriers which all stem from the same equation. When you are in a competitive industry, you have to identify how you are going to work your way up the totem pole. This typically comes in the form of more input than the competition but sometimes, there is a path of least resistance; we call this working smarter not harder.
Visualize your ideal producer. The rep that is always working hard and always “on”. The one that is always making connections, supporting their clients, and providing valuable information on available options. You know, the one that never fails to make an excellent first impression.
A significant majority of the insurance industry employees are women, and the role we play is integral to the success of the industry. Like many, I have experienced firsthand that the insurance industry is a historically male-dominated business and gender issues have existed for a long time.
How many times have you tried to accomplish a task on your phone only to realize the website is just the regular desktop website but shrunk down into a teeny tiny version which makes it super difficult to see or do anything? Probably quite a few. State DMV websites, Doctors' websites, and Insurance websites are some of the worst offenders in the market.
Data sucks. Even writing an article about data sucks. But that does not change the fact that clean data is vital to the success of your business. Unorganized and messy data is like a loaded M-16 without a trained Marine to pull the trigger...it’s useless. It is up to you. Up to you to use your tech platforms to their full potential. Keeping data clean and consistent will help you sell more insurance, service more efficiently, and have the ability to leverage integrations that will supercharge your business.
We as business owners are in a challenging time, there is no doubt about that. I think we are all sick of hearing about COVID and the perceived limitations it has put on our agency’s operations and growth. But we have RISEN to the occasion, making drastic pivots in our agencies. We have been forced to make extreme digital enhancements, and in hindsight, learned that we can actually run more efficiently than ever before...who knew?!
The journey of an independent agent has a very similar story for most who have had a career in the insurance industry: After weeks/months of studying for your test, everything finally kicks off with a newly issued license in P&C, Life, and/or Health and it’s officially go-time. You find an agency willing to let you come in and get to work and away you go. From day one, you jump in the proverbial saddle and are expected to call, quote, and sell business. If you were to poll 100 agents and have them walk through their first year in the industry, they would most likely tell you that this was their story. “I was thrown into the fire and had to learn insurance on the fly”. But in those first few weeks, it becomes very clear what will end up being the biggest problem…where do all of the leads come from???