In the first two parts of this article, I discussed changes coming to the insurance industry and what SIAA is doing as the consumer-centric focus evolves. In this final chapter, I will talk about YOU and the action steps needed to evolve and succeed (now). After all, it IS all about you. SIAA, our Master Agencies and our Strategic Partners don’t win unless you win! While there’s much to do to evolve, take it one step at a time. You’ve already taken the first step by being part of this organization. Here are a few other things you need to do:
- No one ever succeeded by simply showing up. Use the tools we have for you. Use the tools your companies provide. Don’t know how? Ask your local Master Agency – they’ll help!
- Fully automate your agency. Maximize your agency management system. Efficiency will be a key to survival. Also, as millennials continue to join the (insurance) workforce, they bring their love of maximizing technology. They’ll help you evolve, but you need to get it started. The tech vendors are ready to help.
- Self-service will come in many forms, but having the data within your agency will be key as well. The vendors often share that their available training is underutilized. One vendor offers a system that ties together: agency website, rating (including website and social media rating), drip campaigns, management system, accounting, renewal management, and an online customer service center in one package…what’s automated in YOUR agency?
- Start becoming a business development agency. If you have staff ‘stuck in service mode’ its time to train them or replace them. Use the SIAA Training & Learning Center to get started.
- Consider service centers. The fee is less than paying for staff, but only do it if your staff (and you) are ready to become primarily focused on business development. Also, as an SIAA agency you have discounted service center fees.
- Start offering additional products. Commercial Lines, Voluntary Benefits, Cyber Liability, Lifelock, Life Insurance. SIAA has numerous partnerships available to make these new ventures easier for your agency.
- Build a local brand. Website, social media, direct mail, community involvement. Become a resource for other local businesses. Remember those struggling captive agents with one product? Their books are filled with insureds that want a local agent. Go get them!
SIAA and your Master Agency are here to help. We’re here for the future and we’re reaching for our goals. Our model only works if you grow your agency, if you thrive and succeed. We are all incentivized in your success. Together, we will be the future of the local independent insurance agent distribution system.