In the middle of the year, it is useful for sponsors and consultants to take a deep look at their goals for the year and adjust their sales and marketing strategies accordingly. Based on discussions with manufacturers, suppliers, consultants and customers, here are three age-old ideas for good customer relations in our current bear market.
Save money and earn money
Changes in financial markets are driving the need for mid-year curriculum renewal. Although we may have started the year with hope, the economy has changed dramatically. Rising prices and rising prices are taking their toll on our aging customers.
We’re getting a lot of calls from agents whose major customers are worried about inflation. Many seniors are trying to figure out how to continue living as they age in retirement. They really want to feel more financially secure.
Seniors are looking at their life insurance and wondering if they still need the coverage. Their children are growing up or maybe the reason they bought the support has changed. Some clients have lost their spouse, divorced or decided they no longer need help. As the cost of living rises and portfolios shrink, older customers begin to feel the pinch. And because older people have had problems in the past, they know that it will be years before things change – so they start to question why they are helping.
In a situation like this, it’s a missed opportunity, and it can be frustrating for the customer, to fail to inform them of their options. The secondary life insurance market is strong right now, and no customer should let their policy lapse without an initial appraisal. It can be “monetized” and an opportunity for sponsors to earn extra money. Freeing money from an inefficient policy can create new opportunities for investment – investing.
Work smart, not hard
We strive to do more from our relationships and from our plans with clients. One way to do this is to look for ways to sell multiple products to customers and therefore make more money by working smarter and not harder.
My advice to agents and advisors is to add a life insurance review to all their portfolios. Process analysis is an easy way to work smarter. It’s easy to get started. All you need is valuable customer information and a compelling case study that can be quickly evaluated to determine the value of the current plan and whether the case will qualify for the secondary market – without forcing your customers to engage in traditional “standard” practices. “storm” of papers.
A policy review can help clients identify a new way to fund their retirement planning. And it is important to note that even if the client is not ready to sell their policy, the agent or consultant has brought them a way to return in the future.
Policy analysis provides an easy way to improve communication with customers, as well as a way to generate additional revenue by working smarter. Customers often do not realize that their life insurance is a valuable asset. They think that life insurance is a responsibility and they don’t think that they can get any other benefits from the insurance. They think that the only way is to let the process end and they will leave with nothing. The secondary market is doing amazing work right now, and there are many opportunities to work smart, not hard.
Another common discussion I have with agents and consultants revolves around the goal of creating a product because it is a method of reaching customers in a systematic and frequent manner. My idea is to use the principle test as a “door opener.”
Agents and consultants can reach customers with a financial method that many customers are unaware of. It gives them a reason to call a customer they may not have heard from in a while or who is difficult to land. A policy review leads to an opportunity for the client that may lead to a conference call, Zoom call or face-to-face meeting. Agents can bring something to the table and execute it in an orderly manner that can be replicated for major clients across their book of business.
For customers who are not familiar with the secondary life insurance market, the evaluation of the policy provides an opportunity to educate them and introduce a previously unknown method. Just as a customer may want an appraisal of a property such as a house, car or expensive jewelry, an appraisal process sets the price so that expectations are set well enough to sell.
As the year progresses, it will be important for agents and advisors to remain steadfast and act quickly on the financial challenges that clients are facing. Agents and consultants can help customers who need it by adding value analysis to their products.
William Scott Page is the CEO of policyappraisal.com and LifeGuide Partners. They can be contacted at [email protected].
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