By Steve Korn
Like most other industries, the insurance industry is not exempt from clients closing their doors, being acquired, or losing someone to competition. In addition, industry statistics indicate fewer businesses buy group health plans, workers comp, and even general liability insurance.
Considering it can take over two years to convert a new commercial insurance prospect into a client, appointment setters for insurance agents have been vital in keeping agencies healthy and thriving.
Keep Business Flowing
Let’s use a fictitious independent commercial insurance agency as an example. The agency has a few satellite offices or now, post-COVID, fifty insurance producers working to keep that pipeline full of new business.
- What are the best ways to keep the flow of prospects strong?
- How do you maintain the present level of business and increase sales?
Indeed, no one can argue that referrals are essential, and most agents do an outstanding job of nurturing those referrals and working them into quotes and eventually new clients. But, in most cases, referrals are not enough.
Insurance Agents Need Appointment Setters
Our pretend insurance agency and its producers need to aggressively pursue new business that very well may not be aware they exist in the crowded insurance field.
Whether their emphasis is property and casualty, group health, workers comp, or even supplemental insurance, uncovering new prospects must be a top priority.
So, the question becomes, what is the best way to accomplish that?
Let’s say our agency decides to put that responsibility on the producers themselves. There will likely be a flurry of activity for a couple of weeks, then it will slowly die out until nothing is happening.
In most industries, producers in the insurance world are like salespeople; their strengths lie about anywhere other than cold calling. They want to get on a call, discuss coverages, and review pricing because they have that knowledge and are comfortable with those discussions.
The problem is they don’t set appointments.
Appointment Setting Benefits
Our fictitious insurance agency can decide to set up their own internal call center to prospect for new business. Or they can outsource it.
The job of an outsourcer is to call a list of prospects, get the decision-maker, determine if the prospect meets the insurance agency’s minimum qualifications for the type of coverage, and schedule an appointment. Nothing more.
Appointment setters don’t talk about coverages. They don’t discuss costs. They aren’t licensed, insurance agents. Instead, their focus is on setting appointments with qualified prospects and moving on to the next call.
Uses for Appointment Setting
It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about a larger agency with dozens or hundreds of producers working either from a centralized office or a smaller size.
Consider using an appointment setter for:
- Calling a group of clients set to renew within a 90-day timeframe—that someone inside the agency may not have the capacity to contact—to arrange an appointment to review coverages.
- Target an industry-specific list of businesses where you may have a competitive advantage or more expertise.
- Clients that may not have renewed their policy within a specific timeframe.
Also, let’s not forget that appointment setters are great at reaching out to current clients about add on or supplemental products. The possibilities are endless. Appointment setters for insurance agents can have a quick conversation with a client or prospect to help keep the pipeline for the agency full.
Steve Korn is a business development executive for Quality Contact Solutions. His experience spans forty years and includes ownership of his own call center for over twenty. Contact Steve at firstname.lastname@example.org or 516-656-4198.