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, Author: Craig Fuher

How to Grow Your Insurance Business

Growing your insurance agency in the age of digital transformation might seem like a daunting task. However, combining your agency’s customer value proposition with the right digital tools could be the key to unleashing your full potential. Read on to learn how to grow your insurance business.

Digital agencies are embracing proactive solutions that enable carrier integration, automated underwriting, and overall streamlined customer experience. The transition is smoother than you’d expect and increases your access to small business customers. Read on to find out how to grow your insurance business by becoming a digital agency.

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Grow Your Insurance Business Through Digital Transformation

Are you, like many traditional agencies, wondering how to grow your insurance business? Technology-based digital insurance agencies are standing out from the crowd, expanding faster, and increasing revenue. 

By leveraging innovative software and distributing through digital channels, an agency can build customer relationships faster, enhance productivity, and manage policies intuitively. 

How to Become a Digital Agency

Many paper-based agencies have the misconception that digitizing their agency is a challenging and overwhelming task. Or they believe that digital tools will replace them as an agent. However, becoming a digital agency is a simple transition, guided by expert training and support teams that empower agents and their role in the insurance industry.

Any insurance agency can become a digital agency and learn to leverage the support tools that drive business growth. Intelligent insurance agency software can help you start making use of data assets and other productivity-enhancing practices.

Benefits of Becoming a Digital Agent

When you become a digital agency, you leave all the repetitive processes to technology. That way, you can focus on what matters most, building client relationships, and growing your business. 

These innovative tools also elevate the customer experience with streamlined and proactive support functions. Consider the benefits of becoming a digital agency:

  • Sell policies 24/7
  • Reduce paperwork
  • Connect to carriers directly
  • Increase overall efficiency
  • Offer instant quotes
  • Empower agents with support tools
  • Proactive quote renewal options
  • Online and social media marketing capabilities
  • Automatically write small business policies online
  • Leverage data tools to better understand your clients’ needs
  • Facilitate relationships between agents and carriers

Instead of replacing agents, digital tools strive to enhance everyday processes. Agents are empowered to get to know their customers and match them with the services they need. Meanwhile, time spent managing backend tasks is minimized for optimal efficiency and business growth.

Finding the Right Staff

Hiring the right employees, agents, and staff for your insurance agency is essential for driving business growth. But where do you find the right people?

Selecting the best individuals for the job isn’t always easy, but there are some guidelines you can follow to maximize your chances for success. Find out how to make your insurance business grow by finding the right staff.

What to Look For in Staff

Look for these essential qualities when hiring new employees for your insurance agency:

  • Industry experience and knowledge
  • Outgoing, but humble personality
  • Attention to detail
  • Strong multi-tasking abilities
  • Customer-centric mentality
  • Ability to handle frustrating sales experiences professionally
  • Familiarity with compliance and legal regulations

Finally, assess your potential employee by testing them on the job. You may also consider hiring staff temporarily. That way, you’ll get a chance to measure their performance and determine if the individual is a suitable fit for your agency.

How to Attract the Best People

If you want to get the best staff for your agency, you need an attractive workplace to entice them. Here’s what the best employees are looking for in an insurance agency:

  • Commission-based compensation and extensive benefits
  • Professional training programs and resources
  • Agency values that align with customer needs
  • Community involvement
  • Empowering digital tools
  • Career advancement opportunities
  • Employee manual or guidelines
  • Opportunity to earn bonuses and incentives

Additionally, offer your agency employees the same quality benefits and financial protection services you provide to customers. Periodic evaluation of individuals’ goals and performance evaluations will ensure all of your staff are on the same page. Agents want to work for a company that cares about its employees. If you really want to know how to grow your business, then invest in and support your agents.

Licensing Challenges

Compliance and licensing issues are two of the most common challenges that insurance agencies face when growing their businesses. Most small and mid-sized insurance agencies will have one license that covers multiple coverage lines. Larger agencies expand and branch out by adding additional licenses.

Agency, third-party administration, adjuster, resident, and non-resident licenses are some of the most common types that insurance agencies need to obtain. However, the process isn’t always smooth sailing. 

Common Difficulties

Below are some of the licensing challenges agencies typically face.

  • Keeping track of license renewal due dates manually
  • Achieving transparency on license stand
  • Proactively monitoring license expiration dates

High administrative costs for managing licenses are a typical outcome of these challenges, along with wasted staff-hours. Agencies also have to ensure that they have the correct licensing for their product lines.

For example, some states won’t allow Property & Casualty insurers to offer Life Insurance without additional licensing permission.

Digital Solutions

Software solutions can help agencies keep track of various license statuses. For example, when combined with a holistic approach, Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC), software tools can help agencies tackle these challenges.

Digital agencies are well-positioned to stay in compliance with state licensing requirements proactively. An agency can embrace digital transformation by creating an online portal that gives agents an overview of all their licensing, training, and certification requirements.

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Dispelling Insurance Quoting Myths

Many customers have misconceptions about the insurance quoting process that prevents them from finding out about their coverage options. One approach insurance agencies are using to grow their businesses is to dispel these quoting myths successfully.

Consumers that don’t yet understand the benefits of your products and services are an untapped resource of potential leads. In this post, you’ll find out what the most common insurance quoting myths are, and how to dispel them effectively. 

How to Dispel Myths

You can grow your insurance business by dispelling common quoting myths. Instead of marketing your products and services directly, take the opportunity to share valuable information.

Provide your target audience with useful insights before, during, and after a transaction. The process helps maintain brand awareness and shows consumers that you are there to help and guide them throughout the lifespan of their policy and beyond.

How to Stay Motivated at Work

Motivation and enthusiasm are essential for every insurance agency that wants to boost growth. A motivated agent is more engaged and prepared to go that extra mile to satisfy clients, ultimately driving revenue growth. The most influential factor in staying motivated as an agent involves creating the right environment to flourish. 

Creating a Motivational Work Environment

Follow the tips below to increase motivation and performance outcomes at the agency.

  • Set goals – Monthly, quarterly, and annual goal setting are empowering, especially when the goals connect with long-term objectives. Measure your growth and progress overtime to make sure you stay on track.
  • Pursue training – Ongoing sales training is highly motivational and challenges you to review and adjust your tactics regularly.
  • Work as a team – Build a team of agents with open communication lines. You can share valuable advice and set group objectives, which will help maintain long-term motivation.
  • Embrace digital solutions – Repetitive and time-consuming administration tasks eat away at an agent’s enthusiasm. Fortunately, digital tools can automate these processes, so you have more time to focus on client relationships.

Overall, you should strive to create a positive, but a constructive work environment that emphasizes recognition, ongoing education, and big picture goals.

Increasing Personal Motivation

Staying motivated, whether as an agent or managing a team of agents, can be a difficult balancing act. Aside from setting up your workplace for success, there are several ways agents can increase intrinsic motivation.

  • Make boring tasks fun – Everyday tasks can become motivational if you find a way to make them more fun. Consider setting up small rewards for achieving daily goals.
  • Ask your peers – Learning from other successful agents in your field can be a significant motivator. You can also learn new sales tactics that work.
  • Pace yourself – Break down huge tasks into small, manageable ones that you can achieve. 

Self-motivation comes from having clear short-term and long-term goals. Motivated agents understand that each milestone gets them closer to achieving their life objectives.

Quote Insurance While You Sleep

Providing insurance quotes while you sleep might sound like a far-fetched idea reserved for large, well-known companies. However, every insurance agency can integrate instant online quotes into its customer service offering regardless of the size. You can provide quotes 24/7 while enhancing the customer experience in a way that drives business growth.

How Instant Quoting Works

Wheelhouse, the InsurTech software powered by Talage technology, enables agents to connect with carriers directly. First, clients visit your website and click through to your custom Wheelhouse link and fill out one application. Next, they receive instant quotes from top-rated carriers. The entire process takes place with little to no agent participation. As the agent, you keep ownership of the client’s book. 

Immediately following the quote request, you’ll receive an email notification. Then, you can review the application and take the necessary steps to bind coverage. Customers will see your contact information on every page throughout the application process. This feature shows potential clients that you’re committed to their needs from the start.

Benefits of Instant Quotes

The ability to instantly quote and bind insurance policies online is one advantage of becoming a digital agency and can efficiently contribute to making your agency grow. Check out the number of indirect benefits of having instant quotes:

  • Boost revenue – You keep 100% of the commissions.
  • Increase quotes and sales – Use instant quoting on any digital distribution channel. Your email, social media profile, and website are some of the channels where clients could be searching for you.
  • Customer-centric – Instant quoting is simple and appealing to potential customers that prefer to search independently online.
  • Promote your brand – Clients always see your brand when requesting a quote.
  • Improved operational efficiency – Clients can begin the coverage process without agent support. In turn, agents have more time to focus on renewals and gaining customer insights.

Talage provides more than automated insurance quoting technology. We also help you learn how to use Wheelhouse to maximize the business outcomes for your agency.

Small Business is The Foundation of Your Agency

Small business is woven into the fabric of American society. Without it, more than a million jobs would be lost. Their impact on local communities and your relationship with them, are integral to a thriving culture. However, small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) are an underrepresented demographic, often overlooked by insurance agencies. However, agencies that learn how to appeal to this demographic can turn small business policies into the foundation of their agency and less susceptible to the tides of economic cycles.

Creating Value for Small Businesses

Representing over 90% of all US companies, small businesses should be one of your agency’s primary target audiences. SMBs have a unique set of needs and risk exposures that influence the way they shop for insurance coverage.

Most small business owners are short on time and want straightforward insurance solutions that are both economical and effective. Insurance agencies that still use slow, paper-based systems aren’t in a position to meet these standards. 

Digital agencies, on the other hand, leverage technology tools that streamline the process of finding coverage. Talage technology enables every agency to transition to digital operations seamlessly.

Winning Over Small Business Clients

Aside from saving your SMB clients’ time and money, there are several other ways you can win their loyalty and, in turn, grow your business.

  • Build trust – Your small business owners want to know that you have their best interests at heart when designing their coverage plan.
  • Understand SMB needs – Get to know each client’s needs and which circumstances may or may not be covered by a particular policy.
  • Get online – Create a website, client web portal, and social media presence so your clients can find you when and where they need you.

Most importantly, speak one-on-one with small business clients to learn about their needs. Don’t wait until renewal time to communicate. Establish multiple touchpoints and opportunities for your clients to check-in and make sure you’re still meeting their needs.

Top 5 Habits of Highly Effective Agents and Brokers

Long-term motivation and enthusiasm for the job are two essential ingredients that every successful insurance agent or broker needs to have. Agents that want to rise to the cream of the crop follow tried and tested methods that never fail.

Learning the habits of successful insurance agents can maximize your agency’s growth. Here are five habits you can implement today to begin to see an improvement in motivation and work product.

  1. Have a Solid Routine – Highly effective agents have a structured day that incorporates time for themselves. For example, making time for meals, exercise, and self-care can significantly improve productivity. Instead of rushing out of the door every morning, get up 20 minutes earlier to prepare yourself for the day mentally.
  2. Communicate Effectively – Successful agents respond to inquiries, emails, and messages promptly. Fast and effective communication is an ingrained habit of agents that want to convert the most leads and close the most sales. The best agents are also continually networking to generate new leads and increase brand awareness.
  3. Manage Time Systematically – Agents who follow daily systematic time management practices consistently close more sales. Each workday allocates time to check up on referrals and follow up on prospects. Successful agents work smarter, which enables them to make the most out of every day. 
  4. Keep Learning – The insurance market is continually evolving, along with consumer purchasing habits. Stay informed and up to date by proactively studying your customers. The most productive agents are always learning new skills and sales tactics to connect with clients.
  5. Leverage Digital Tools – The highest-performing insurance agents leverage digital tools that optimize marketing, customer service, and communication initiatives. In many instances, the right technology can make or break your agency. The best tools will drive efficiencies in multiple ways while improving the client experience.

Learning how to grow your insurance business when technology is rapidly evolving requires savvy thinking and a flexible approach. Establishing a digital foundation is the first critical step. Your agency will be well-equipped to retain talented employees and develop a highly-motivational workplace. Best of all, your agency will be in a position to honor the customer value proposition, optimize productivity, and proactively support business growth objectives.

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