An anonymous independent agent posted a responce to my comment: “My advice: if you want to work in sales, find a more lucrative profession.”
I own an independent agency and my renewal premium is approximately 6 million, generating over $1 Million in commission annually. Your points may have some validity, but there are not many sales jobs that I’m aware of that provide: A)RENEWALS, B)GROWTH OPPORTUNITY, C)BUSINESS CONTINUATION
Please point out a sales job that in your mind would be as or more rewarding. Many of my friends are in real estate and financing, and they are busting their hump non-stop to keep bringing in new clients while I work on my tan at the golf club.
Yes, I have been in business almost 20 years. However, I started as a scratch agent with nothing. Sorry to come across as rude on my post, but your advice on finding a better sales job irritated me.
Here is my advice on how to grow your agency quickly, and closely mirrors my own experiences.
1)Start at a captive company, but make sure it’s one where you are salaried and not paid on a “loan.” You’ll learn the ins and outs of auto/home policies, and get good training on life/di/ltc sales.
2) Join NAIFA and be actively involved. Meet other successful agents and take some professional courses.
3) After you feel you have your feet solidly on the ground, start making the move to the independent world. Start your own agency, but don’t pick a name like “John Smith Insurance Agency.” Choose a name that you can create a brand around if you decide to get bigger or open franchise agencies.
4) Partner with an existing successful agency that has a good loss ratio and lots of carrier appointments. See if he will work out an arrangement to bring you on in return for a cut (10-15%). The agreement should call for his cut to reduce as your book grows. I had a break-point at $1 Mil, 2 Mil, etc… At $4 Million I could completely split on my own and owe him nothing. With enough good business on the books you’ll have no problem getting your own appointments.
5) Hire agents underneath you to sell and CSR’s to service clients.
How to get this big quick? Buy LOTS of leads when you start at the captive carrier. Most will co-op the cost of the leads or pay for them entirely. Keep these leads in your own database.
Once you are on the independent side, your odds of placing every piece of business you quote are around 9 out of 10. Work your existing leads as well as buy new ones. When you write new clients, make sure to send thank you’s, BDay cards, Christmas, etc… and don’t be afraid to ask for referrals. You should set a goal to get at least 1 referral out of every 2 new clients you write.
My average annual premium is about $1800 per year for auto/home, so to write $50,000 per month in new premium, you only need to write about one new client per day to hit that goal. You’ll also pickup life and commercial opportunities along the way.
If you’re working 8-10 hour days, you have 8-10 hours to find ONE PERSON to write. Not that difficult to avg 5-10 per week.
As you get bigger you should hire other agents that can use your agency name to write business. Offering them their own book at 15% cut like you had is a good starting point. Just be careful about who you hire.
I found this site accidentally the other day. The idea of finding a better sales job blows my mind and caused me to make a post.
Thanks for the input anonymous .. drop me a note if you’d like your agency link posted.