Previously, we mentioned that there are 10 important limiting beliefs that often are prevent insurance agent’s labor. But this is not the only change in mindset this sector has to overcome. There is another aspect even more fundamental: the need to stop selling and becoming a trusted advisor.
Consequently, the agent’s daily labor will have to transform into something professional, which is the way forward for this sector to keep growing the business.
Most people will agree that the biggest challenge in the insurance sector (as it happens in many other sectors), is to build up a strong client portfolio, and to capture new clients from scratch. With this belief in mind, agents may concentrate their labor in maintaining their current portfolio and growing it by capturing current client’s relatives or other contacts. Or even when handling an incident, which can lead to acquiring a new client who was initially on the opposing party.
In other words, customer acquisition frequently is a consequence of proper portfolio management and a well-executed work. It is a mix of care, service, being kind, and giving good advice and solutions.
When people get an insurance, they are looking for trust. And this is the greatest value an agent can offer – the customer will not choose only based on price or product characteristics. Differentiation resides in giving better advice and personalized solutions. For example, when offering a home insurance; if the community is already insured with the same agent and company, it provides a lot of peace in mind. In case of an incident, it would be solved automatically and without the client having to worry about it. This is advising and conveying facilities.
Another relevant misconception is the idea that all insurance companies are the same. Quite the opposite, insurance companies can be quite different from each other, and there is where the agent has another opportunity to demonstrate his value, helping the customer to find the best fit. Additionally, in case of an incident, the agent has a great opportunity to prove himself indicating the steps to follow. For example, in case of theft, he can provide support from the very first moment the report is filed.
How often do we hear the story that when there is incident, and the client asks for help with the insurance company there is no one picking up the phone at the other end of the line? Or the common answer is that it is not covered by the insurance without any further explanation? This is what happens with Amazon, everyone loves it until there is a problem with it and we cannot find any contact person to ask for help. And again, here is where the agent has a lot to say, becoming a translator between an incomprehensible world and what the client needs.
In a world where companies have a strong focus in customer acquisition, attracting through prices, the agent’s role and value is constantly questioned. Agents are regularly challenged to reduce prices and, in some occasions, conduct dubious practices which can be difficult to deal with.
The solution is to make a change of mindset, to truly be a reference for the clients, and to professionalize – this is the real value.
If the agent was to be removed from the equation, we would miss him. Insurances might get a little cheaper, but we would have unpleasant surprises and we wouldn’t understand what is covered by the insurance or why. We would only have distant channels with which it would be difficult to communicate. And the agent is the first one who must understand the importance of their role in people’s lives.
If you want to know more about the new challenges of the insurance sector, download our report.