MIAA makes it easy to become an independent insurance agent. Are you worried about being able to compete in the marketplace if you go out on your own? MIAA provides higher retention, increased production, increased profitability, and more overall competitiveness through partnerships with top-rated insurance carriers.

 

Here are just a few things that MIAA can provide for your agency:

 

Direct Contracts with more insurance carriers

Increased commission levels for our insurance agents

Increased revenue from Portfolio Management Service Fees

Support from the experienced MIAA Staff

Become instantly BIG

Remain a 100% independent insurance agency

Special industry programs and much more!

 

Each insurance carrier has applications that need to be completed for a direct contract. As a member of our insurance agency group, MIAA will provide you with these insurance carrier applications. The insurance carriers also require volume commitments in order to grant your independent agency a direct contract. MIAA has strategic partnerships with many insurance carriers and can provide your agency with a direct contract to some carriers with a greatly reduced volume commitment. Insurance carrier marketing representatives should be approached for an appointment request, or you may work through MIAA staff if you are a member of the insurance agency group.

 

When you are a new insurance agency with our insurance agency group, the setup process is greatly determined by the speed in which applications are completed and received by the insurance carriers. It can take insurance carriers approx. 2-10 weeks (depending on the carrier) to contract your agency. You may submit business through the MIAA AccessPLUS System while you await your carrier contracts if you are an MIAA member.

 

Midwest Insurance Agency Alliance (MIAA) is a division of Strategic Independent Agents Alliance (SIAA), a highly successful independent insurance agency group for insurance agents, insurance carriers, and insureds. If you want to take your agency to the next level, contact us to see what MIAA can do for you and your clients.

It happens to the best of the best, you lose a client from time to time.  Don't mark that file dead, mark it as an opportunity and get after it!  Here are 6 tips to consider when bringing the "dead" back to life.

 

ACT FAST.  The longer and insured is gone, the less chance you have of getting them.  Decide quickly if you want to get that insured back or if you are better off without them.

 

WHAT HAPPENED?  Go ahead, give them a call and ask them why they left.  If they are a good client, they will let you know.  Use that information to be proactive with current insureds and to try and win them back.

 

HOLD ON TO THAT INFO!  Keep their client information on file as well as the circumstances as to why they left.  Track trends and use that information to win them back and to keep others from leaving.

 

ATTITUDE COUNTS.  How your agency handles the cancellation will have a lasting impact on the client.  Keep a positive attitude when they cancel and be understanding.  They are probably nervous and feel bad leaving your agency especially if you have established a relationship with them.  Don't burn the bridge!

 

COME BACK TESTIMONIALS!  Have you won some clients back?  Find out why they came back to you and ask them if they will give you a testimonial.

 

BE PERSISTENT.  Do not give up, you may not get them back the first time, but keep in touch, stay positive and keep trying!

 

 

Midwest Insurance Agency Alliance (MIAA) is a division of Strategic Independent Agents Alliance (SIAA), a highly successful independent insurance agency group for insurance agents, insurance carriers, and insureds. If you want to take your agency to the next level, contact us to see what MIAA can do for you and your clients.

Cross-selling is a great way to increase your sales while adding increased value to your clients. Sometimes cross-selling is as easy as a client asking, “Do you also do home insurance?” In that case, boom, you just got the cross-sale and provided quick and easy one stop shopping for your client. While that does happen every once in a while, your goal should be to initiate the cross-sale and increase your cross-sells over time.

 

Before we get into how to cross-sell more insurance to your clients, we have to look at the two distinct situations.

 

1.     Client already owns the product, but with another company. In this case your client may have multiple insurance plans spread across multiple companies, so the goal here is to get them to consolidate with your agency. This can take repetition, following up, and selling what benefits you can offer them over who they are currently with.

2.     Clients who do not already own the product. In this case, they may be buying life insurance from you, but do not currently have anyone for home insurance. The key with these clients is to inform them and educate them on the product, create a need for them, and then sell them the coverage.

 

While these two situations aren’t complete opposite, but each are addressed uniquely and need different sales approaches.

 

The best thing you can do to cross-sell insurance is to properly identify target products for each client. The key here is to make it as easy as possible for your client to make the leap into additional coverages. By knowing exactly what your client needs or is lacking, you can make the perfect recommendation for an insurance plan without making the client do much work.

 

You don’t have to immediately pitch a cross-sell. Address the most immediate needs first, if they are coming in for life insurance, get them set up with that first, and maybe start asking questions or planting seeds on other plans then, but don’t push too hard. Nobody wants to be sold to, so by addressing their needs first, you show that care for your client and don’t just see them as your next sale. Once you get to know your client, then start asking about other insurance needs they may have and how you can help them.

 

Does MIAA sound like it could be a good fit for your agency? Visit our website to get started and to learn more about joining the MIAA family.

So you’ve heard of the infamous wedding season that goes from May to October. But what about “engagement season?” That’s right, folks. The holidays are quickly approaching and over the holidays, spent with family and focused on loving one another, many couples find it the perfect time to pop the question.

 

According to the research done at WeddingWire.com, 9 out of the 10 most popular days to get engaged will be happening in the next 3 months! If you are planning on getting engaged soon, there’s way more to think about than just the  style or color of ring your partner will want. Have you thought about purchasing insurance for the ring?

 

What? Insurance for an engagement ring?

 

Yes! If you didn’t already know, it is a definite possibility to obtain insurance for you or your loved one’s engagement ring. And, it is something every couple should at least think about before your big day.

 

Funnily enough, it may be a whole lot easier than you think to make sure your engagement ring is covered from theft or damage. Depending on the value of the ring and your insurance policy, you might be able to extend your renters or home insurance policy towards your ring, sometimes even if it is lost or stolen outside the home. If you have questions about if your engagement ring is already covered under these policies, or could be under additional personal property coverage, check with your insurance agent.

 

Additional Tips

 

It’s always best to keep in mind too that engagement ring insurance isn’t the right fit or isn’t necessary for every couple. While you might not want to tell your partner the exact value of their ring to keep up some of the surprise and ambiance, it is helpful for the wearer of the ring to know the value in the event of unforeseen circumstances.

 

If the ring is only valued at $400, maybe you will think a little less about insuring it as this will be easier to replace. However, if your ring is valued at $4,000 or $40,000, having insurance coverage for your ring could save you thousands of dollars, if you hope to replace it. Having insurance isn’t all about the money though; engagement rings are special and through insurance, you’re also investing in replacing the exact ring that was specially picked out for you as a couple.

 

As always, read the policy clearly to know exactly what will and will not be covered. Some policies might not cover throwing your ring in the trash accidentally and will only cover theft.  Look over your policy with an agent, as they can verify if it’s the right one for you and will cover what you need it to.

 

Congratulations to all the recently engaged couples out there and contact your local insurance agent for more information on engagement ring insurance.

You’ve picked the perfect venue. You have the date and the hashtag all set. All the food at the reception is planned to a tee. You’ve finally said yes to the dress. Everything for your big day is coming together and you can breathe a nice sigh of relief.

But what if an unforeseen emergency, illness or disaster hits on your wedding day? With average wedding costs hovering around $35,000, that’s a large investment you risk losing. Just like you wouldn’t purchase a new car or home without thinking about insurance, you shouldn’t plan your wedding without thinking about insurance; it’s too big of a risk. With wedding insurance, you’ll have that added peace of mind and confidence that no matter what happens on your big day, you and your significant other will be covered.

 

What is wedding insurance?

Similar to other types of insurance, wedding insurance protects your investment from those pesky, but often expensive, unforeseen circumstances that could ruin your wedding day. For example, what if at your wistful, winter wedding, a blizzard rolls through and you’ll need to postpone the wedding? Or what if your reception venue has a tragic fire just before your wedding day and you lose your deposit and have to book another location? What happens if you or your fiance gets severely ill the day of your wedding? These wedding disasters are all too common and are exactly where wedding insurance becomes handy!

Depending on the coverage you’re needing, insuring your big day can cost under $200, which is a drop in the bucket compared to the cost of the entire wedding.

If you’re considering purchasing wedding insurance, you will want to purchase it as soon into the planning process as possible. Your caterer or florist could go out of business tomorrow and you don’t want to lose any deposits you’ve already put down if that happens. Purchasing insurance sooner rather than later will make sure your day is covered from the beginning!

 

What Wedding Insurance Covers (And What It Doesn’t)

Each wedding is different and similarly, each wedding insurance policy will look a little different, depending on the state you reside, the insurance provider and what you need covered.

Many insurance providers offer “special event coverage,” which would insure any of your deposits, catering, rental cars, etc. in the event you need to cancel or postpone your wedding. Here are a few circumstances to consider:

  • Inclement weather: No matter where or when your wedding is held, there is a chance of a severe storm ruining the day, whether it be a tornado, hurricane or blizzard. With wedding insurance, your policy will usually cover postponing the wedding for these reasons.

  • Sickness or injury: Many wedding insurance policies will cover an unforeseen illness or injury of not only the wedding couple but also other key people involved in the wedding, such as parents of the couple.

  • Military or sudden job relocation: If you suddenly need to move across country for your job or were sent into active duty in the military, this is often covered under insurance policies.

  • Cancellations: While you hope everything you’ve planned with go off without a hitch, vendors will occasionally have to cancel last minute. And while incredibly frustrating, if you have wedding insurance, it may cover the extra costs of finding a last minute replacement.

While your wedding insurance policy could cover many different circumstances, it will most likely not cover cancelling a wedding due to cold feet or a sudden breakup. Also, if you’re looking to cover your engagement ring, that might need a separate policy and will not be included in most wedding insurance coverage.

 

 

Most couples put a ton of time, energy and money into making their wedding day spectacular and memorable. Anything you put that much investment into should be guarded and protected as best you can. Before purchasing a wedding insurance policy, check with your vendors to see if any protections are already included in your payment. For example, some reception venues might have insurance for inclement weather or property disasters included. Then, check with your insurance provider to see what policy you may need to cover you and your loved one’s special day!

At the Midwest Insurance Agency Alliance (MIAA), we work with many different types of agents and agencies to help them start, continue and even grow their independent ownership. While many join MIAA to get a leg up as they hope to start their own agency and are in the beginning stages of agency ownership, we also work with agencies that have been in the insurance business for years.

If you’re an already existing agency, you might be curious how joining MIAA will better your business. What will you get out of being a part of MIAA? While there are numerous ways MIAA can help an established insurance agency, here are a few you’ll want to consider:

Staying Up to Date Within the Industry

Sometimes, it’s hard to keep with all the changes happening within the insurance industry. Has this been a struggle for you? Between new products, new clients and new marketing strategies coming all the time, it’s nice to have someone there to back you up and teach you ongoing strategies for your business. MIAA can be that support, with our experienced staff ready to help you grow and insurance agency grow, even through all the changes. For example, every year, we host a convention for our members to continue learning new strategies and to network with others in the insurance industry so you won’t fall behind.

 

Greater Access to Companies

One benefit many of our members speak of when they join MIAA is the increased access to larger and different companies. When you’re independent and small, it can be hard to get into contracts that meets every need of your consumers. When you join MIAA, you become instantly big and have the ability to diversify the carriers you can offer to your clients.

Does MIAA sound like it could be a good fit for your agency? Visit our website to get started and to learn more about joining the MIAA family.

When you are in insurance, leads are the name of the game. What better way to get leads then through group sales? With a group sale you can present your sales pitch to the largest number of people possible. While this does sound great, how do you go about setting up and leveraging group sales?

 

In-House Presentations

 

What better way to get a group sale than at a company in front of a group of people? Network with some companies that would be interested in you providing an in-house presentation for their employees. Even during group sales people feel the comfort of a face to face meeting, and are more likely to do business with you compared to just seeing one of your ads. A group presentation is also a great way to showcase your expertise to a large group of people.

 

Take people out to lunch

 

Take a group of potential clients out to lunch. Sitting down in a more informal environment will relax people and make them feel more comfortable than an office setting.

 

Charity Events

 

Whether you organize or just participate in them, being involved with charity events is great way to get your name out to a large group of people while attaching your name to a good cause. Charity events also give you a great opportunity to hand out flyers and brochures while giving back to the community.

It’s no secret anymore that social media is huge in the marketing world. If you own a business, or are in any sort of sales driven field and you aren’t on social media, open a new tab and start a face book, or twitter, or Instagram, anything, then come back here and we will continue. Older generations may be a little more hesitant to dive into social media, but as millennials grow up, you need to be on social media. Social media can seem intimidating or silly, but if you set measurable goals, social media may be what your marketing is missing.

 

Like any kind of promotion or marketing, you need to figure out the ROI or return on investment. Social media is no different. As an insurance agent, leads are what you are after, so how can you determine if you have leads coming via social media? Online we are looking for conversions, essentially they are measurable actions to gauge how effective your marketing is. For an insurance agent, you can gauge effectiveness by measuring

 

-       Contact forms

-       Information downloads

-       On-line quotes

 

Nowadays you can track your customers or leads activity on your site or on your social media, so you can determine how many people saw the ad vs. how many people completed the desired action ie. filled out a form or visited your site from your social media.

 

Once you figure out what you want to accomplish with social media, you have to decide what platform you want to be on. If you are unfamiliar with social media, each platform lends itself better to certain business areas. Instagram, for example, is primarily based around the sharing of photos or short videos, so naturally businesses that have visually appealing merchandise or products, like a restaurant, could use Instagram to great effect. A business like insurance sales wouldn’t necessarily lend itself to Instagram, but it doesn’t hurt. That’s the beauty of social media, it doesn’t cost you a thing, and you can (and should) be on multiple platforms. The only thing that will cost you money on social media is boosting posts or paying for ads, and these are easily tracked so you can tell how effectively your money is being spent.

It’s been said many times, great sales people aren’t born, they’re made, and becoming a great insurance agent takes practice. Here are some of our tips to practice your sales technique and increase your sales.

 

1.     Use a mirror

Using a mirror can help you see what your prospects see when you are pitching to them, and practicing in front of a mirror is the foundation of sales practice.

 

2.     Practice with Colleagues

Colleagues are great to practice on because they know what you are selling, they know all of the questions or objections a prospect will have, and they have their own experience selling.

 

3.     Practice with a non-insurance person

Sometimes you can get better insight into your customers by practicing your sales pitch on someone who is outside of the insurance world. This is a good way to make sure you are not using too much jargon or industry language.

 

4.     Record yourself on video

This is like practicing in the mirror but on steroids. Every thinks they sound weird when they hear recording of themselves, but this can be helpful. Look for things that your customers will be looking at, do you make enough eye contact? Do you look confident? Do you fidget or look nervous? Uncovering these can help immensely when you get in front of actual customers

 

5.     Keep track of lost sales

It’s never good to dwell on the past, but by keeping track of lost sales, you can see where you may have gone wrong. Write down what you might do differently next time and you just might see that you are keeping track of less and less lost sales.

 

Practice makes perfect, and by honing your craft you can be one of the top agents in your office.

It’s no secret that selling insurance can be difficult. You are selling your clients trust, and insurance is an intangible idea that they cannot hold or take home with them after your meeting, but you are selling them a promise. Because of this it can be difficult for younger or more inexperienced insurance agents to make sales. When your clients buy, they buy into you, you are their insurance agent. Here are some tips from us on how to be taken more seriously and close more sales.

 

-       Dress more professionally. This one is pretty obvious, the more professional you look, the more serious your clients or prospective clients will take you. This also works for your boss and coworkers. If you are always one of the best dressed in the office, you will get noticed.

-       Avoid slang. Avoid alienating your client by using slang. This can destroy a client’s trust in you and make them see you as some young kid that doesn’t know what they are talking about.

-       Find some common ground. Get a feel for your clients, figure out what they like, what they dislike, and then find what you agree with them on. This is the first step towards building a relationship with your client.

-       Ask them about their kids. If you are selling to someone much older than yourself, ask about kids and or grandkids. This can form a link in their brain between you and their loved ones, and will make them more sympathetic to what you are saying.

-       Reference your combined experience. This is one time where it is ok to name drop. If you are the youngest salesperson in your agency, don’t be afraid to mention how long the agency has been around, or how much experience the agency has as a whole. If an agency that has been around for 50 years trusts you, then so can your clients.

-       Don’t be afraid to sell to young people. You will have a distinct advantage in this category, people your own age. Younger people are more likely to trust someone around their same age, and you will probably have more in common with them, so it should be easier to sell to them!

-       Don’t be afraid to be young. Inject some enthusiasm into your job. Buying insurance is boring for most people, so make it a fun experience for them

 

The best piece of advice we can give to any young person starting off in any field is just to work hard. If you work hard and keep at it, success will find you sooner or later.

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