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Why the Independent Insurance Agent Will Survive

Do you worry every time you see a Geico or Progressive commercial and wonder how long you can keep your business going?

These insurance giants  – and let’s be real, they ARE successful  – shouldn’t have you quaking in your shoes.

But you should sit up and take notice regarding why they’re successful.

Their business model sustainability, however, should have you wondering how you need to adjust to meet the demand.

Let’s face it, consumers are flocking to these behemoths because they’re filling a gap in the industry.

Here’s what they’re NOT doing:

  • Shutting their doors at 5 or 6 p.m.

  • Making prospects and customers wait for an answer to questions.

  • Providing customers with only one means of communication.

The key to “matching” the service that the Geicos of the world requires embracing technology.

In fact, you can give your customers an even better experience by adapting, because you’ll have that “it” factor that Geico can’t provide: the personalized touch.

What today’s customers want

Here are a few guidelines to get you started and to help you understand what customers want from their insurance agent:

  • A way to get in touch that works for them. That means you’ll have to be available by online chat, text message, email and phone.

  • A way to get a quote 24/7. Your website should have a tool that will give them quick access to this information – any day, any time.

  • An app that helps customers keep track of their policies and information, including thoughtful tools like home inventory, ID cards, accident reports and so forth.

  • A website that also gives them a way to view policy documents or to request changes to a policy.

  • A digital marketing strategy that seamlessly integrates a website, social media, videos and blogs, all designed to educate the prospect and customer.

  • The ability to sign documents electronically, which helps to streamline the buying process and gives customers the convenience of completing the option to buy online instead of coming into the office.

  • Disclosure. In this day and age, customers want to work with someone who is upfront and honest about what they charge for their service. So why not consider disclosing your “charge” for the service you provide? You’ll build trust and offer value that many other agents don’t.

Do you see a theme running through this list?

It’s all about the customer and providing the most value possible.

Don’t worry, independent insurance agents

The insurance agency is changing quickly, and it’ll change with or without you.

But independent insurance agents don’t have to worry that they’ll soon go by the wayside.

In fact, it’s time to seize the opportunities that exist to bridge the impersonal ways of digitally communicating with the personalized attention that customers still want.

Clients and customers also desire convenience, options and transparency.

So stop worrying about your future, and start making a plan to succeed in the current market conditions.

And give Geico the boot!

In what ways can your agency or office make adjustments to begin delivering a five-star digital customer experience?

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