Most people involved in the insurance and financial advisory business are working from home as directed by stay-at-home mandates across the U.S. Social distancing has become very real, as evidenced by almost no traffic on the streets of cities large and small. The traditional way of doing business by scheduling face-to-face meetings has become difficult, and most would call those attempts irresponsible.
So, how do insurance agents continue to do business in this new world?
First of all, according to a recent Life Insurance Management Research Association (LIMRA) study, the sales potential of the underinsured life market in the U.S. is $12 trillion. Yes, that is with a “T.” According to the same study, the underinsured market is expected to grow by $300 billion per year based on the current rates of population growth and inflation. There is a real opportunity for property and casualty (P&C) agents to add life insurance as services. And what better time to do so than now because:
- The market is underinsured, and most people know they are;
- Because of the pandemic, death and sickness are on all Americans minds; and
- It has never been easier to write life insurance remotely.
The trend with life insurance carriers has been and will continue to be making the purchasing process simpler, less intrusive and less expensive. Their studies have shown that at certain face amount limitations, it is far simpler and more cost-effective to use data and electronic tools to underwrite policies rather than following the traditional path of paper applications, ordering medical records and exams, requiring wet signatures and hard copy policy deliveries. These efficiencies make the purchasing process simpler for the client while removing many of the obstacles of buying life insurance the “old way.”
While at home with the threat of COVID-19 on everyone’s mind, P&C agents can check-in with personal lines clients and help them narrow or eliminate the coverage gap they have and better protect their families. You can:
- Run proposals online. Studies show that Americans overestimate the cost of buying life insurance by alarming amounts.
- Apply online. Drop tickets and simplified applications are normal for most carriers today. Drop tickets don’t require you to ask intrusive medical or financial questions. Those questions are asked by trained personnel at the carrier level.
- Obtain e-signatures. Several carriers now allow for e-signatures.
- Clients can avoid the insurance physical. Once again, at differing face amount levels, clients can avoid having to meet with an examiner to answer medical questions and provide blood and urine samples.
- Electronic policy delivery. Most carriers have an electronic process in place to allow the client to retain their policy and finalize delivery requirements. These processes are simple and easy for the client to understand and complete.
In down economic times, such as these today, finding alternative sources of income to make up for the lost revenue makes sense for many insurance agents. And transitioning into life insurance is now easier than ever given the more efficient processes carriers have created.
The following are examples of how two carriers streamlined their processes to make selling and buying life insurance much easier:
- Lincoln Financial: Their TermAccel program allows applications age 30-60 to purchase $250,000 to $1,000,000 of term life insurance at standard non-tobacco, standard tobacco, and better rates with no exam following a turnkey electronic process. And they offer better rates for those that follow their TermAccel process than others that choose to use the older, more paper-intensive, wet signature process.
- Protective: Their Velocity program offers applicants ages 18-45 the ability to purchase up to $1,000,000 of term life without providing fluids or ordering medical records. The face amount is limited to $500,000 for applicants ages 46-60. The entire application process is electronic, including policy delivery.
Other carriers have streamlined their processes, as well, so check with your Brokerage General Agency for more information on how to make business more profitable by adding life insurance in the new electronic way.