The Perks of the Job
Selling insurance is a multi-million dollar practice; in fact, back in 2017, insurance sales agents have a median salary of $49,710 annually and can earn up to $76,220. Not only is it lucrative, but you don’t need to have an expensive college degree as you can start selling insurance with a high school diploma (although a college degree or specialized training can significantly help you land more specialized insurances and higher-paying positions in firms and agencies). And perhaps the biggest perk of being a full-time sales agent is that you have more freedom and flexibility in your work schedule, allowing you for better work-life balance.
However, as with all sales-based professions, there’s a lot of room for error that can cost you sales. New and/or inexperienced sales agents may find it difficult to gain their footing and may have to deal with numerous rejections before they can even make a single sale. As such, novices in the insurance selling industry need to take note of these essential tips to help boost their chances of closing a sale:
#1 Expect Rejections and Learn From Them
When you’re starting any profession involving the selling of goods or services, you should always expect a lot of ‘No’s, but this shouldn’t dissuade you or discourage you from pursuing a career as an insurance agent. It can be hard to keep your head up and be hopeful when you’re constantly being rejected, but the sooner you realize that this is normal (even for seasoned agents), the sooner you can start learning from each rejection. Try to be more wary of where you went wrong; perhaps you were too aggressive with your sales pitch? Or perhaps you overloaded your potential client with too much information or jargon, instead of connecting with them.
#2 Failing to Follow Through
Many insurance agents employ the fisherman approach of casting a wide net by contacting and emailing as many clients as possible. While this is a good approach, it’s important that you follow through with your commitments — if a client replies and you both agree on a schedule to meet up to do your sales pitch, make sure that you show up on the time and place. Arriving late and making your client wait can ruin your rapport and hurt your chances of closing the sale as it would make the client feel that you’re unprofessional and don’t value their time, and you might as well consider the client lost if you fail to show up at all. On a related note, it’s also important for you to properly keep track of your schedule to ensure that there aren’t any overlaps.
#3 Speak Less, Listen More
A lot of seasoned insurance agents agree that the majority of the sales conversation should be with you listening to the client. By asking relevant questions and actively listening, you’ll get to know your clients, their situation, and eventually their needs, and use this information in your sales pitch. Sales are about connection, after all, and you can’t connect with a potential client if you only bombard them information about the insurance package you’re selling.
#4 Be Smart With Social Media and Online Presence
Social media can be a huge tool in helping you increase your reach and also in increasing your chances of closing a sale. Potential clients, especially younger ones, are more likely to check you out online before or after your sales pitch, and they’d trust you more if you keep a professional-looking social media account for your practice (which should be separate from your personal one). And if you’re looking to boost your image and scope further, consider having your website — there are even specialized platforms and companies that offer website design and online marketing for insurance agencies and agents.
Being an insurance agent can be a rewarding and lucrative profession, but it can be rough for beginners. However, with these simple tips, you’ll be able to get more leads and close more sales, and (before you know it), you may even be part of the upper group of agents earning more than $75k.