Today's market place is competitive for insurance. Making money in this industry requires a lot more than simply placing an ad in the yellow pages and sitting by the phone. Success takes more effort than being able to hand out a one-size-fits-all insurance package for your clients. But even in this market place, with a little dedication, more than a little wisdom, and a lot of hard work, you can easily rake in six figures as a successful insurance agent.
# 1 Learn More
Your clients are not interested in yesterday's ideas. Business classes and insurance seminars are abundant and useful. Ongoing education will help you learn new aspects about the business, master best practices and avoid the most common mistakes. Not only will more education give you a better grant of the challenges that insurance companies face, it will provide you with a mountain of professional contacts and resources. Your clients will recognize that you never stop studying and learning-and they'll learn to trust you to guide them toward the best choices for them.
# 2 Develop a Market Niche
The jack-of-all-trades is the master of none. Become the “go-to person” for one industry area. Let the beginners hawk everything to everyone-auto, health, life, professional and medical coverage. Great restaurants do not offer Mexican, Chinese, American and Thai food. They specialize in and master one cuisine. Follow the same principle! Specialize and build a reputation as the best in town at what you do. Seek the professional organizations that will be interested in your product line. Offer free seminars. Speak to every group that wants to learn about your selected area of insurance. These people will remember you as their local expert in the insurance business.
# 3 Market Smarter
Handing out business cards is important, but it's not a marketing plan. It's only a start. You need to do more. Create a monthly newsletter. Save money and deliver it to your prospects by email. Make your webpage interactive. Better yet, make it entertaining. Ask people to give you feedback on your newsletter and your webpage; many of these “reviewers” will become customers.
# 4 Provide Choices
Very few people appreciate being told exactly what to do-and no one wants a “pushy” insurance agent cramming a policy down their throats. People need to feel involved in the process. The ideal pitch offers clients three choices-not enough to overwhelm, but enough to ensure participation. People who choose between a series of options will feel emotional ownership of their policies-and they are more likely to talk up those policies to their friends.
# 5 Make Personal Connections
Always remember trust is central to the insurance business. Clients purchase from-and stay with-agents they trust. Be a presence in your clients' lives. Send birthday cards. Send cards on important anniversaries-like the client's wedding date, the date of their home purchase, and the date of a client's major career change. Be a face to your clients. It's difficult to trust a faceless billing machine. And, yes, keep every appointment as sacred! If you can not meet in person, make personal phone calls. Client loyalty begins with clients' sense of the person to what they owe loyalty.
Stick with these best practices and you will become a successful insurance agent.