Tag Archives: policy term

You Are No Longer an Insurance Agent

News flash! You are not an insurance agent.

Yes, you sell insurance products and services for commissions, but that’s not why your clients buy from you. Every successful insurance agent today understands that they do much more than transfer risk for their clients. Today’s successful insurance agents understand that they are first and foremost marketers, publishers, creators, innovators, speakers and value providers.

This may seem like a foreign concept, but it’s true.

No insurance producer can help clients financially if she can’t first paint an emotional picture through words and ideas. Marketing is not about manipulation, tricks or tactics. Today’s insurance buyers are too educated and untrusting to fall for inauthenticity. Today’s marketing is about great content.

Content is not limited to a website, emails or product and service descriptions. Everything a customer or prospective customer comes into contact with about you or your agency is content. Content is any medium through which you communicate with the people who may use your products or services. It could be the words on your webpage, the email sent to a client, a headline on your brochure or the words used during an appointment with a prospective client.

There is no hiding from content. It will make or break you.

However, most agents don’t seize this opportunity. In fact, most agents don’t even know the opportunity exists.

Ann Handley, author of “Everybody Writes,” says it best: “Ours is a world where technology and social idea have given us access and power: Every one one of us has the awesome opportunity to own our own online publishing platforms—websites, blogs, email newsletters, Facebook pages, Twitter streams and so on.

“I don’t use the phrase ‘awesome opportunity’ lightly. The opportunity to change how we communicate with people we are trying to reach—and what we communicate—is tremendous, yet we aren’t taking full advantage of it.”

With this great opportunity, why are the vast majority of insurance agents still standing on the sidelines, simply watching and waiting?

Some think they lack time, others say they lack of knowledge or skill, and others still believe that there is no need to change.

I contend you don’t really have a choice.

  • Your prospective clients have more options than ever before.
  • Your prospective clients have more resources than ever before.
  • Your prospective clients expect more from their agent than ever before.

Those agents who deliver on these expectations will stand out and earn business from their ideal clients. Those who don’t will continue to fight and scrape for what’s left.

So, I ask you a basic question: Are you a marketer or an insurance agent?

Trick question. You have to be both.

One is expected, the other will make you successful.

You are expected to understand policy terms, definitions, exclusions, coverage gaps, underwriting, endorsements and what all those strange acronyms mean.

You get paid for providing a positive experience through your content. Providing that is not easy, and that’s why most agents are struggling. It requires that you are much more than just smart, friendly and able to ask if you can provide a quote.

  • You have to help your customers achieve something that’s important to them.
  • You have to provide a unique viewpoint.
  • You have to put 100% focus on your customer and view the world through his eyes.

All three listed above take hard work, hustle, training, continual personal development and a passion that burns deep inside you.

This passion doesn’t come from outside sources. It starts and ends with you.

  • How badly do you want to make an impact?
  • How badly do you want to help others?
  • How badly do you want to become the industry leader?

To succeed, you must decide you will not settle for being just another insurance agent. You are a professional who earns trust through consistent and valuable content, offline and online, to your clients and prospective clients.

To be a successful insurance agent today, you must first be a marketer … and a good one.

Top 10 InsurTech Predictions for 2016

2015 was the year that InsurTech emerged from the shadow of Fintech. This story has been told through my last 40 research notes published on DailyFintech.com over the past eight months. Including 28 interviews with the CEOs and founders of InsurTechs, this story spans the globe from the U.S. to China, from South Africa to Estonia, and a few stops in between.

So, what does this tell us about the next chapter of this story? Here, I give you my Top 10 InsurTech predictions for 2016.

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In no particular order…

Prediction #1

Insurers will create lifestyle apps that provide additional consumer value on a continuing basis. Continuous consumer engagement will start to replace price as the key buying criterion. The result will be sticky insurance with strong brand loyalty.

Prediction #2

The person-to-person (P2P) insurance business model will struggle to reach scale in its current form. This will drive the P2P insurers to find new ways to replace the traditional carrier model, and we will see signs of a completely new business model for insurance. That will scale.

Prediction #3

Much greater levels of personalized rating will become widely available using new sources of data from technology such as wearables, the Internet of Things and smartphone apps. This will lead to variable premiums over the policy term to encourage better behavior (although insurers will hold back and not introduce corresponding punishments in 2016).

Prediction #4

“All in one policy” cover (aka, all-risks insurance) will emerge for consumer protection. Policyholders will be able to insure their lifestyle (their home, motor, dog, holidays, iPhone, treasures, travel) in a single policy based on highly personalized risk assessment through a digital platform.

Prediction #5

“All in one place” platforms (aka a concierge service) will replace traditional intermediaries with a digital broker. These services will consolidate multiple policies, converge with financial planning tools and provide robo-advice on gaps and duplication in cover.

Prediction #6

New entrants will come into the market with highly sophisticated data modeling and predictive analytics solutions. They will exploit mass-scale technologies, high-performance computing and techniques developed in high-frequency trading.

Prediction #7

Convenience and the ability to digitally turn insurance cover on and off as needed will be steadily accepted and adopted. As will microinsurance, sharing insurance and pay-per-mile. Unit premiums will be higher, but this will be outweighed by Millennial attitudes toward insurance cover and paying a price for convenience.

Prediction #8

The poorest in our world are the ones who need insurance the most. In 2016, the insurance industry will (finally) start to better serve the massively underinsured populations in developing countries. This will be driven by a combination of the massive market opportunity that exists for insurance, global economic forces and a socio-political agenda.

Prediction #9

There will be widespread deployment by traditional insurers of new digital solutions to reduce cost of claims and loss handling. Serving both ends of the insurance workflow, these tech solutions will enable better collection of data and evidence to improve risk rating at the front end and the claims handling processes, especially at first notice of loss (FNOL), at the back.

Prediction #10

2017 will be the year of block chain and insurance. No list of predictions would be complete without reference to block chain, but IMHO it is going to take all of 2016 for the insurance industry to get to grips with what block chain is, what it can really do for insurance and (most important) why we should use block chain as opposed to any other database or enabling technology.

Don’t get me wrong, for I am squarely in the camp that believes “block chain is the next Internet.” And we will continue to see a lot of block chain insurance activity throughout the year. But adoption in insurance won’t take hold until we’ve seen 2016 out.

How to Develop Plan on Terrorism Risks

Terrorist and other mass violence attacks, which occur with alarming regularity around the world, can threaten your people, operations and assets. Many companies look to insurance — mainly property terrorism and political violence coverage – to help manage the financial impact of these risks, which can include property damage and business interruption losses.

Terrorism Insurance or Political Violence Coverage?

Property terrorism insurance provides coverage for the physical damage and business interruption that can result from acts that are motivated by politics, religion or ideology. Political violence insurance provides coverage related to war, civil war, rebellion, insurrection, coup d’état and other civil disturbances.

Choosing which coverage – or combination – is best for your organization can be tricky. The line between what is considered “terrorism” and what is considered “political violence” is often blurry. For example, should attacks by particular groups be classified as acts of terrorism, or another form of political violence?

To help determine the best insurance program to manage these risks, here are a few things to think about:

  • Ensure the limits of insurance that you buy provide enough protection for multiple loss scenarios.
  • Review the location of your assets to determine the appropriate insurance solution.
  • Understand the policy terms, conditions and limitations of terrorism and political violence insurance.
  • Work with your advisers to understand your property and employee exposures so you can make an informed decision or mitigate potential losses.

Addressing the Risks

Along with insurance considerations, of course, you need to ensure the safety of your employees with integrated and well-practiced crisis and continuity plans in the event of a disaster. Events from terrorist attack to natural catastrophes can cause significant business interruption (BI) losses. Steps to take to manage BI risk include:

  • Develop and test business continuity plans.
  • Conduct scenario testing.
  • Coordinate BI insurance with other coverages, including political violence and terrorism insurance.
  • Be prepared to gather appropriate information in the event of a claim, including recording damage via photographs and video.
  • Maintain separate accounting codes to identify all costs associated with the potential damage.

For more information on these topics, read Marsh’s 2015 Terrorism Risk Insurance Report and our political risk insurance report, Strong Capacity Drives Buyer’s Market for Political Risk Insurance.