In my final publish we explored the shocking resilience of the insurance coverage agent within the face of predictions of their fast demise, which stretch again not less than 25 years. In sum, the information of the loss of life of the agent has been enormously exaggerated. Brokers management about 80% of the house owner market and 65% of the non-public auto market at this time as a result of most prospects nonetheless desire to do enterprise with brokers.
So, since they aren’t going wherever, it’s pure to ask: how can carriers and brokers higher collaborate to serve prospects and drive development?
Carriers have been making substantial investments in digital gross sales and repair capabilities, cloud, CRM programs and synthetic intelligence-driven chat to drive value out in claims and repair. However I consider there may be nonetheless substantial room for enchancment in utilizing know-how to enhance agent capabilities to drive gross sales development and ship a greater buyer expertise. Ignoring this cannot solely miss alternatives but additionally create dangers.
For instance, we have now seen carriers launch initiatives to route all customer support calls via central service facilities. Brokers nonetheless promote the insurance policies, however when the client wants help afterward they’re directed away from the agent and towards an automatic service system as a substitute of connecting with the agent or company employees they already know and belief.
Applications like this each take away one of many agent’s largest strengths and threat alienating prospects who would favor to speak to their native agent. Profitable brokers use service alternatives to strengthen relationships and drive cross-sales. Approaches that disintermediate the agent have the potential to negatively influence each gross sales and retention.
This isn’t to say that decision facilities, digital self-service or chat know-how shouldn’t be used, however relatively that prospects ought to have the selection of how they want to have interaction.
Catalyzing collaboration via know-how
I see three distinct areas the place carriers can leverage know-how to companion with brokers to enhance agent efficiency, the provider’s backside line and the provider worth proposition to the agent.
1. Advertising and marketing
Most brokers would not have the dimensions to constantly and efficiently use applied sciences corresponding to synthetic intelligence or net crawlers of their advertising and marketing efforts. However carriers do! Carriers even have entry to great quantities of knowledge, each inside and exterior, that they will mine for actionable insights.
For instance, is a present buyer searching for child carriages? This might be a possibility for a life insurance coverage dialogue. Are they actual property postings or mortgage charges? They’re doubtless both refinancing their dwelling or on the lookout for a brand new one. Conversational adverts on social media can be utilized to generate leads when a prospect is actively wanting and subsequently almost definitely to buy insurance coverage. Notifying an agent in real-time when occasions like these occur will create win-wins situations for brokers, carriers, and prospects.
2. Gross sales
Utilizing synthetic intelligence and speech recognition, carriers can leverage the talent units of their finest gross sales brokers and supply scripts, objection responses and next-best presents to all brokers – on their pc screens – as they’re having gross sales conversations.
There are numerous alternatives for collaboration right here. Examples embrace applied sciences that enable a buyer to have a chat or name choices from a sturdy agent web site; integrating self-service and quoting capabilities from an agent web site with notifications despatched to an agent for observe up after a customer-initiated motion; and choices to schedule an appointment with agent or agent employees digitally. These capabilities must be obtainable on each the agent web site in addition to the provider web site. Carriers ought to embed an agent someplace in each customer support loop, as shopper preferences range from transaction to transaction.
These are just some examples of how carriers and brokers can collaborate to mutual benefit proper now. In case you’re thinking about studying extra, hold your eyes peeled for an upcoming white paper on the topic from me and my colleagues. I’ll publish about it right here when it’s launched.
Within the meantime, I’d love to attach and reply any questions you’ve gotten about at this time’s insurance coverage panorama. I will be reached right here.
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