Thinking of starting a career selling life insurance? Or are you already in this field and noticed that your client base isn't growing? Want to find ways to improve sales?
Check out these ten simple tricks to become a better life insurance sales agent. You're sure to see your sales grow while you help people make important decisions about their future.
Answering the Question "How Does Life Insurance Work?"
To become a better life insurance sales agent, perfect your compelling answers to basic questions like "how does life insurance work?"
Your whole sales effort depends on explaining these concepts in ways that build trust and develops client relationships. Your clients depend on you to show them everything they need to know about life insurance.
A 2018 survey from LIMRA and Life Happens showed that half of all Americans visited a life insurance company website to get information online.
Almost 1 in 3 tried to purchase life insurance online, You can prevent this in-person bypass if you have these compelling explanations ready in hand.
Life insurance is a way of protecting someones loved ones in the event of their untimely death. If someone is their family's primary breadwinner, life insurance can give them the peace of mind that their family will be taken care of after they're gone.
Selling Life Insurance - How Do You Prepare
Not all insurance industry professionals sell policies. Insurance Sales agents are one of many positions that require further training beyond a high school diploma. Sales agents qualified to sell life insurance policies are one of these very jobs.
All 50 states in the US require prospective agents to have a life insurance license. A Health and Life license allows agents to sell basic insurance policies like term and permanent life policies.
Other financial services such as help with investment tools and commercial securities require additional licenses.
Agents complete 40 hours of training before they take their license test. These classes cover topics like state and local insurance regulations as well as ethics. Some states also require licensed agents to participate in continuing education courses as well.
Tricks for Selling Life Insurance Like a Pro
Now that you know your terms and license requirements, it's time to focus on bringing in your client base! Try these ten tips to increase your customer count dramatically.
Write a Strategic Marketing Plan
Create a sales marketing plan that outlines your strategies for reaching your intended audience. Use multiple strategies to prospect new clients. Some agents use methods like online advertising or blogging on insurance-related topics to advertise their skill.
Create your Online Professional Profile
Be sure to have a LinkedIn profile created that outlines your professional experience. You could also list any unique attributes that make you the most qualified agent to handle client's needs. Maybe you grew up in your sales territory and know concerns specific to that region.
Don't forget to have a handy pile of paper copies of your resume. This resume should include your professional information and any problems you solved for your customers. These hard copies are handy takeaways when you attend community functions and are a great icebreaker to meeting new prospects.
Get to Know Your Primary Geographic Market Area
Once you've identified your geographic market area by city or county, educate yourself on everything that is important to the people who live there. Are these areas hit by hard economic times? Is it back to school time for them?
Once you know something about your market area, you can advertise campaigns that promote relevant offerings based on those community events. Keep track of births, marriages or new business openings to learn more about your market area as well.
Get Known in Your Own Local Community
If your market area is your own hometown, get involved with your kid's school or a civic group. Write blog posts about these groups and what they are doing for your community. Include your name and contact info on the article, and offer a free brochure on how you understand your community and can help them with their problems.
Another effective technique includes attending community meetings like Chamber of Commerce mixers. These venues are a good way to form partnerships or give presentations on your services.
Target Your Selling Techniques by Demographic
You can't sell life insurance to 20-year-olds like you'd sell to a 60-year-old. Older generations may have a different value on purchasing a policy now where younger prospects might think its too early to buy life insurance.
Appeal to the selling points of each of these demographics:
Millennials (born 1981-2001):
Use social media to promote your services to millennial clients. Write blog posts or answer common questions on social media sites like "is life insurance worth it?" to engage this audience.
Generation X (born 1965-1980):
The "forgotten" generation grew up during times of broken homes and economic instability. This demographic will appreciate your attention to their long-term security. Generation X will also appreciate your authenticity if you present your services in a no-nonsense way.
Boomers (born 1946-1964):
Boomers prefer face to face interaction for business transactions and believe in responsibility to their families. Boomers also value youth and may appreciate knowing that they still have time to build a life insurance policy value that cares for their loved ones well into the future.
Silent Generation (born 1925-1945):
If your client base is from the Silent generation, stick to pre-internet marketing techniques and approach these potential clients in person rather than over the phone.
This generation may respond better to formal events (i.e., community meetings) rather than casual meetings where they can learn more about your services.
Sell Through Referrals
In keeping with the social media trends, use the power of referrals to promote your services. Your good performance record will resonate with others when they hear how well you served a client's needs.
This technique works well with millennials who will most likely purchase life insurance after they consult with family and friends.
Don't underestimate this tactic with other generations either. The silent generation will pay attention to radio or newspaper ads with recommendations from your previous clients.
Boomers will look for email referrals or brochures that they can digest at their leisure. You can overcome any Generation X skepticism about your services when you have sincere praise from their peers.
Design Your Pitch to Focus on Loved Ones
People buy life insurance because they want to know their loved ones will be cared for. They will appreciate it when you remind them of other expenses that might come along after they die like their child's wedding or college expenses.
Make your end goal the same as theirs, and you will convert more leads.
Send a Monthly Client Newsletter
Create a monthly newsletter to your neighbors, clients, and prospects as a way of reminding them of your services. Newsletters don't have to cover only insurance-related topics.
You can advertise local events to your subscribers as a way to show them that you understand what's important to them and the region where they live.
Budget Time to Prospect
Reserve time on a regular basis to prospect new clients. Don't wait until your prospects run dry before you look for more.
Have daily or weekly goals for the number of calls you make or emails you send to look for new customers. Don't forget to follow up with a "thanks" to any referrals you receive. Make these tasks an ordinary part of your work week to ensure that your client base keeps growing.
Statistics show that 80% of sales happen after five or more client contacts. Life insurance can be an emotional topic and one of the hardest to approach. Most consumers don't want to think about their death while they're still alive.
Consumers also don't want to foresee terrible consequences for their families if they don't plan for the future. Your patient persistence can soothe their fears and remind them that you are here to help.
For more advice on how to be a successful agent, check out this exclusive Career blog post from the Washington Post. The Washington Post National Jobs and Careers blog are here to help you build your professional future.
Now that you know these tips to improve selling life insurance, it's time to put them in action. Start by creating your online professional profile today if you don't already have one. Include your professional experience and examples on how you solved your clients' problems.
Outline your draft marketing plan that lists your strategies for reaching and keeping clients. Include plans for creating a community newsletter to stay in contact with your customers. Create your in-office prospecting routine and calendar future community events to attend.
Remember to check our national job board list where you can find the latest insurance jobs in your area. You can start applying today!
Don't get discouraged if your prospects take a long time to make up their minds. Remember that these prospects are tackling a tough life decision. They'll be thankful when they see you patiently waiting, to help ensure their loved ones are taken care of.