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ONE CHANCE TO MAKE A FIRST IMPRESSION

Posted by David Soforenko on July 16, 2020

Using technology to more effectively streamline operating efficiencies
If we agree with the adage, “You only get one chance to make a first impression,” why are so many insurance agent and broker websites so uninspiring?  

A 2019 J.D. Power Study reported that independent agent and broker channels continue to show increasingly higher levels of customer satisfaction. Do we really think, in today’s world or with the next generation of buyers and decision-makers, that they won’t at least start their search online? According to ThinkwithGoogle’s 2018 report, 63% of all insurance purchases begin on-line. Driving new customer acquisition increasingly comes down to having a strong brand and evidencing how your customer experience is better than your competitors…and doing it in a way that suits the client or prospect.

Put yourself in the chair of your potential client and take a heartfelt look at your website. Would you find this:

“Thanks for coming to our website, built exclusively to tell you how great we are and that our service is fabulous. However, call, email or fill in our form and we’ll be happy to respond when it’s convenient for us. And, if you need something right now, feel free to use the limited functionality we may offer.”   

Or would you find this:

“Welcome to our website. How can we help you?”

Independent agents and brokers have the best customer experience goals in mind. However, many find it difficult to translate that to an online entry point to their firm. Many sites haven’t been updated in years, aren’t responsive (or mobile-friendly), and the content and imagery are stale. Worse yet, chatbots haven’t been enabled, and there’s no opportunity to pay bills online.

Re-envisioning the online experience for your firm isn’t easy and isn’t necessarily cheap. However, consider the upside that allows you to:

  • Streamline operations;
  • Broaden your customer base;
  • Upsell policies; and
  • Connect with your clients and prospects when they are ready to engage (not you).

We sometimes hear from firms that they are waiting for their carrier partners to help them solve their online experience problem. This ‘head-in-the-sand approach’ hasn’t been fruitful thus far and, in many pockets of the marketplace, has resulted in further erosion of channel dominance. However, insurtech disruptors are moving upstream from micro to small commercial to take advantage of this opportunity.

Technology firms like Tarmika and ITC, both new to the Property & Casualty marketplace, have hardwired feedback and reporting capabilities available to the end-user or firm leadership. Additionally, they are built intentionally to adapt and grow, recognizing what software engineers build doesn’t always reflect the realities of an agency or brokerage environment. Their willingness to “learn, improve, and realize” how your firm talent, and your insureds, want to receive the customer experience is key to their market intrigue.

Like so many things, it’s not a question of if – it’s only a question of when they make the move into your ‘smiddle’ market space. And when that disruption arrives – is your firm going to be ready? Worse yet, will you even know it has happened?

If you have questions about Today’s ViewPoint or would like to learn more about using technology to drive efficiencies in your business, please email or call David Soforenko, Executive Vice President, at 440.220.4101.

MarshBerry’s Connect Platform team is hosting a webinar highlighting how technology and carriers are “Connecting the Dots” to help insurance agents and brokers better manage (and grow) their SBU. Join the panel discussion with representatives from Grange, Hanover, Tarmika and ITC.

"Connecting the Dots: How Carriers & Technology Partners Can Help Accelerate Your Firm’s Growth"

  • Date: Wednesday, July 22, 2020 @ 11:00 am ET
  • Click HERE to register. Space is limited. 

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Topics: Management Consulting, technology, book of business, SBU, connect, platform

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