As we covered in our previous installation, there are several keys to growing your insurance agency. Today, we’re diving into the many ways your choice of insurance carriers can impact your agency’s growth.
Partnering with the right insurance carriers
As an independent insurance agency, one of your greatest assets is your ability to offer clients the best possible insurance policies for their needs, regardless of the insurance carrier. To truly do this, however, your agency has to have access to the right insurance carrier partners.
For example, if the only insurance carrier partnerships you have in place are notoriously slow at processing claims, bad at customer service, and overpriced in their rates, your producers aren’t going to have much luck keeping clients. Even if you’re partnered with excellent carriers for some lines of business, you could be missing out on fast-growing new products if you don’t have partners who underwrite them.
Here are a few ways to explore and expand your carrier partnerships.
Leverage your existing network of carrier partners
Perhaps the best place to start is with the relationships you and your producers already have. How strong are your relationships? Do you keep in close contact with your existing carrier partners? Do they reach out to you when they have new products? Do you reach out to them when you have clients looking for something unique?
Maintaining close working relationships with the carriers you want to place business with is not something to ignore or leave to chance. Take stock of your best relationships and put effort into maintaining them. Then, look at the partners you’d like to be doing more business with and open conversations about how you might do that.
Join an association, network, or aggregator
Large insurance agencies often have access to insurance markets that are simply out of reach for smaller agencies and independent agents. One solution is to join a network, an association, a cluster, or an aggregator. Each of these terms is slightly different, but the general idea is that smaller agencies can combine their selling power to gain access to top insurance carriers that wouldn’t be interested in contracting with a small agency on its own.
Being a member of a larger network comes with other benefits, often including discounts on helpful software and access to a supportive network of similar insurance agencies you can lean on for help and advice.
Acquiring or being acquired
There’s no shortage of mergers and acquisitions activity in the insurance industry. Whether your agency is looking to grow by acquiring another agency or to become part of a larger organization yourself, the outlook for merging and acquiring is positive.
Much like bringing on established producers, acquiring another insurance agency can be costly at first but highly profitable down the road. However, if you’re a small agency that wants the benefits of being part of a much larger entity, being acquired can lead to growth and financial success as well.
Acquiring another agency means your organization now has more producers who are already bringing in business. It also means you can gain access to carrier partnerships you didn’t already have, or get better terms with carriers due to an immediate boost in premium volume.
Being acquired by a larger agency can mean gaining access to more back-office resources than you’ve had before, new carrier partnerships, and better carrier contracting terms (again thanks to being part of a larger pool of business).
In part three, we’ll discuss how having the right technology is key to your agency’s growth.
Thanks for reading our educational resource! Any above reference to a specific company, method, or product is meant for educational purposes only and is not specifically endorsed by Pie.