Current conditions in the insurance market are rather vague. The “soft market” seems to have come to an end, but the uncertainty of political changes and the uncertainty of things like mold, asbestos and terrorism make it difficult to guess long-term trends. So, what can typical independent insurance agents and brokers do to succeed? What are the basic elements of a good sales and marketing plan?
To know yourself
The best starting point is to first define the “personality” of an insurance company. An agent’s “personality” is a business handbook, which in turn determines what to look for in each market and what new market to represent. For example, a large urban broker who only sells very large business accounts will have different expectations than a small city agent who sells all insurance categories.
First, find the breakdown of each industry: personal, business, life, group interests, and planned business, etc. Then calculate the average account size for each row. Besides, how much of the agency activity comes from the top ten accounts? Finally, analyze the business distribution and determine the top five industries.
List the current breakdown by industry, top ten accounts, and main industries. Calculate the percentage of the business line in the current general ledger. Is the company’s business portfolio healthy? This is the owner’s judgment. Niche sales are generally more profitable, but also more risky. If the agency has many small accounts, the process of selling and repairing small accounts is critical to profitability.
It is important to stay away from business books and objectively ask the question, “Is this book of sufficient value or should its composition be changed?” If changes are needed, what should the agent address? It depends on the expertise of the manufacturer and service personnel and the appetite of the company’s current market. Write these future goals next to the current composition. This thought process separates entrepreneurs from ordinary people.
How much can you grow?
It is important to look at the new sales of the agents as a whole and each producer. Experienced producers in a typical agency should generate at least $ 30,000 to $ 50,000 in new commissions each year, depending on the size of their book. For large companies with large clients, the amount will be higher and there may even be a new commission of $ 100,000.
The hit percentage of each producer must be determined. A hit rate of less than 25% to 33% costs the agency a lot of time and money. Low-hit producers’ technology needs to be monitored and adapted. Producers often cannot pre-qualify potential customers. Sometimes the manufacturer simply does not find a company that matches the agency’s written expertise, nor does it have a market to compete with these business categories. Modeled after successful producers.
The agency may have huge sales, but if the company is lost through layoffs, a lot of energy is wasted on new sales. Calculate the turnover rate of agents and each producer. For a typical property / accident insurance company, the target should be about 10% or less loss. A high turnover rate usually indicates that the business being written by the agency is temporary and the customer is shopping or the risk is not high.
When writing sales and marketing plans, list the current total hit ratio among the agents, the average new contract, and the average business account book. Write next year’s goals next to these numbers. Below this list, write the two or three actions you must complete to achieve these goals.
If uncertainty persists in the current market, insurance companies will make many changes, such as strengthening acceptance or exiting certain markets. Today’s agents or brokers need to have a clear understanding of what carriers can do for them and how this fits into the overall agency plan.
List all carriers and include their number, percentage of commission (or commission), loss percentage and conditional terms. Analyze how the agent’s corporate manual overlaps the existing market. Compare the operators of all agents and their products with the top ten industry groups written by the agents.