In the insurance industry, there are different types of technology available to agents, both for captive agents, as well as independents.
The idea behind “Tech Check” is we’ll discuss some technology that we’ve seen, that we’ve used, and are essentially reviewing so that other agents can know not only what is available, but what is their competition doing with it.
New apps and services come out all the time. But let's start with the basics. In this article, we’ll cover EZLynx, and specifically their comparative rater.
In case you haven’t heard of a comparative rater, it saves a ton of time for independent agents by running multiple quotes at once. It simplifies an important and complicated job, and it’s hugely useful.
Microsoft OneNote has become my favorite, go-to program for staying organized. It's free and it works across all of your devices, so you can use it almost anywhere.
I don't know how I - or my company - stayed organized before we used OneNote. You and can run a better insurance agency, or business of any kind, with this tool.
In this article, I'll show you the basics of how it works and give you a few tips that my team and I use every day.
Sometimes people walk into our offices and ask, "Why do you have so many computer screens?" Some studies show that multiple monitors increase productivity by 20-30%. Others disagree and say that they increase distractions and may actually reduce productivity.
Our own experience is that multiple monitors help immensely. They save us time and make us more productive. This article will show you how you can do it too.
Every employee has at least two monitors. Most of us have three, and four have four monitors. (!!)
I just read an article on a new insurance company called hippo. They are another company heavily invested in by tech-savvy venture capitalists who are going to change the way insurance is done. In Hippo’s case, they are focusing on home insurance. The article is a short read, and worthwhile so you can be aware of what’s coming down the pipeline (because there will be others).
In short, Hippo will focus on customer experience by revolutionizing home insurance: they will get rid of “expensive commissioned agents” to lower prices, provide more transparency, and update forms to be more clear.
Direct sales make agents leery. Direct sales combined with relevant technology can make agents nervous. Should they be?
My parents tell me that they remember placing phone calls by picking up the receiver, upon which an operator would say, “Number please”. They would then say the number - “245J” for example. There were “party lines” in those days, so often neighbors could listen in on the call. For much of my own life, you had to be mindful of long-distance phone charges. For example, our little insurance agency in Perrysburg used to have a $600 per month long-distance bill! (This was on top of our local phone service bill.) But that has all changed for the better.
You’ve set up processes to ensure that you’re setting reasonable expectations with each client, and you have a simple program in place to follow-up with your clients throughout the year. Now, what kind of resources should you put into your retention plans? Here are three that will help:
Aside from basic customer service, much of what we have discussed deals with “customer experience.” We will have an article on this later, but the simple truth is this: Customer service is reactive – customer experience is proactive.
Agents generally hire employees to help with the reactive stuff. For your retention program, either you or someone else will need to monitor it and make sure that bad boy is running smoothly. Even when programs can automate a lot of the grunt work, you have to check on them to make sure everything is working properly.
In the end, if you can have an employee manage the program, even if it’s just online software (we’ll get to that in a minute), it will allow you to prospect, sell, or do whatever creates a profit for your agency. However, be certain that someone is sending out letters, texts, e-mails, etc., to your clients at those specific touch points.
IHT is a multi-state insurance agency with dozens of branches across the eastern and central United States.