Relationships, the Independent Insurance Agent & Salesforce

Relationships matter and they always will.

 

Independent insurance agents know this better than any other business owner.  The product they sell is not tangible at the time of sale, yet their clients invest in them for the trust and advice they offer to protect them when it matters most – at the time of a loss.

While the value of a relationship is not changing, how we are relating to our customers is.  Direct response writers are starting to understand this cultural movement and they have embraced technology to enable a new way of cultivating relationships.  It is time for independent agents to do the same.

Ironically, (and unfortunately) the technology solutions available to independent insurance agents have historically focused on improving operational workflows and “saving keystrokes.”  After years of the insurance industry focusing on building an infrastructure to support service and recall related activities, agents are now challenged to find a new technology ecosystem that will awaken their sales culture and reinforce the very thing that made them successful to begin with…RELATIONSHIPS!

It’s time to rethink how agents build relationships; how they sustain them and the technology platform they are using to do so.

Salesforce.com hit the cloud in 1999 and today they are the leading sales automation technology provider in the world.  Relationships are their thing.  With more than 120,000 companies and 2.1 million subscribers, they are leading companies into the future with technology that reaffirms the importance of a relationship.  Companies like Facebook, State Farm, Wells Fargo Bank, GE, Toyota Motor Company, Huntington National Bank, Pandora and Schwab are using salesforce.com to nurture their sales culture, acquire new relationships and reaffirm their value with existing customers.

While the insurance industry is unique, the tools we use to develop and sustain relationships do not have to be.  Consider a technology ecosystem that…

  • Is relationship and sales focused; providing you with a 360 degree view of your prospects and clients, including LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube & Klout data
  • Mobile – accessible anytime, anywhere
  • Consumes ACORD AL3 policy downloads from carriers – Let us show you how, we built it 🙂
  • Enables you to create and track the success of your marketing campaigns to prospects & clients
  • Allows agency principals to track the sales pipeline with KPI dashboards and reports
  • Provides customers with portal access to their insurance information, branded to the agency
  • Integrates with ACORD forms
  • Is an open platform with more than 1700+ apps in the AppExchange
  • Includes an active and engaged user community with more than 90K people at Dreamforce last year


Recently, in their 2013 Market Share Report, the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America, Inc. challenged agents and carriers to work together for the good of their market share:


“The success of direct advertising, combined with the ease of online purchasing, 
helped direct response firms grow premiums in 2010 by $2 billion…Independent agents and carriers can and should work to take full advantage of online technologies, both in acquiring new customers and providing service.”

The new ecosystem necessary to reconnect the value proposition of the independent agent relationship to the consumer will not be built within the insurance industry – technology has moved too fast and the industry has moved too slowly.  The reality is that the new ecosystem already exists; it’s the cloud.  Now is the time for independent agents and carriers to look outside the industry and begin to embrace the power the cloud has to offer them.

Relationships do matter and it’s time the technology the industry is using reflects it.

To learn more about salesforce.com and what Revolution Group is doing to help agents and carriers grow their business with it, contact at 614-212-1111 or fill out the form below.

About Mike Ravagnani

Mike was raised in Akron, OH and is married with 4 kids, a bearded dragon and a hermit crab. He came to us with Consulting, Developer and Data Analysis experience.In his free time Mike enjoys hiking, kayaking, being outside and Boy Scouts, serving as Cubmaster of the local pack for the past seven years.