Lessons to learn in an uncertain economy
By Frank N. Darras
Do you provide your clients with the very best service you can? Do you go above and beyond not only to sell, but to help them in other ways?
With so much uncertainty in the economy today, how is it possible to make a living selling insurance? The baby boomers are scared. In addition to taking care of their growing kids and aging parents, they have their own businesses and careers to worry about.
Two words: relationship building. You’ve probably heard it before, but have you really put the concept into practice?
Ask yourself, how do you communicate with your clients? How often are you in contact with them? Do you really understand their business? Are you constantly on the prowl for a sale, or do you get to really know them and their business?
Do you provide them with the very best service you can? Do you go above and beyond not only to sell, but to help them in other ways? Do you really educate them? These are all questions you should ask yourself when honestly assessing how you do business.
Relationship building means not only selling, but looking for opportunities to educate and provide helpful information to your clients. To do this you have to find out what they need in order to succeed. Talk to them. See what would help them be successful and, if you can, provide them a better avenue to obtain their goals.
Maybe that is a contact in the financial sector that you know who can assist them with business planning. Maybe you host a networking event to connect clients you have with each other. Maybe it’s a monthly newsletter full of information your clients would find helpful. Set up a referral network and work it regularly.
During this time of uncertainty, do not cut out advertising. This is one of the first things to go when times get hard, however, you can be sure that one or more of your competitors is not going to let up on their advertising. Look at this as an opportunity to take advantage of those who do cut advertising budgets. You could actually gain market share during this recession if you keep a strong presence in the marketplace.
Customer service. Customer service. Customer service. You cannot be too attentive to your clients during this time. They need to feel that you are helpful in any way you can provide quality service to them. That extra effort you put forth could be the difference between keeping or losing a client.
Look at your own agency. Are there ways your agency or company could be more effectively run on a daily basis? Identify those areas that need improvement and implement changes today.
The advantage of a recession is that it forces us to look for ways to cut costs. The lesson is to be creative in the way we promote and conduct our business. Why not learn from the tough times and continue these practices even when there isn’t a recession? Imagine the steady measured success you would experience.