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InsurTech Disruption – Don’t Worry Be Happy

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Do you remember that great song, written by Bobby McFerrin, Don’t Worry Be Happy? It may be the theme song for the rush of billions of dollars invested in transforming the insurance industry.

In 2015 InsurTech investments reached nearly $3 billion dollars in our sector, and according to Deloitte, 2018 is on track to reach $1.82 billion, which will match 2017, as the second-highest level of financing.

Innovation and change in our industry is not new. What is new is the speed of the change, and the billions of dollars invested. After all any industry that is over 100 years old probably needs a little updating. It is about time.

Will your performance as an advisor to your clients improve because of the speed of change and the investments? Yes, it will. “Don’t Worry Be Happy.

As the trusted source of industry knowledge, LIMRA has a unique position in the industry. We have been working with many start-up companies that are focused on helping agents improve performance and provide better service to customers. Here are just a few examples of solutions you may be using:

  • Over 250,000 agents and advisors use LIMRA’s Compliance Training Platform every year to complete the required anti-money laundering training. It was a start-up business some years ago.
  • Pinpoint Global Communications’ technology is used to deliver company-specific online training to thousands of agents to insure that compliance requirements, product knowledge and company practices are understood.
  • Hearsay Systems assures the proper way of using electronic communications, including texting. Advisors can use contemporary communications tools, like texts from smartphones and email systems in a compliant way.
  • LIMRA and Hoopis Performance Network have collaborated to develop Trustworthy Selling. Thanks to this program, thousands of agents have a better understanding of today’s consumer, know how to build trusting relationships and increase their productivity.

Why do we need InsurTech disruption to change our business? Age is part of it. Legacy computer systems, “old school” thinking about our customers, and lack of new “feet on the street” are just three reasons why we need to change the way we do business. Smartphones, online shopping, and crazy simple technology solutions are driving customer expectations and we need to keep up.

Smartphones, online shopping, and crazy simple technology solutions are driving customer expectations and we need to keep up.

Over the last 25 years, the life insurance industry has done an excellent job serving the mass affluent and wealthy. We have failed to deliver solutions to millions of consumers that need life insurance – more than 50 million U.S. households say they need more life insurance and many say they haven’t bought because they haven’t been approached. Customers want access to us in new ways, and frankly, they should have better access. Everyone wins when customers are delighted.

Carriers are collaborating with all kinds of start-up companies, offering solutions for every aspect of the business, especially distribution and sales. Here are just a few examples:

  • Improved customer experience – innovative digital solutions for customer service and communications both at the agency and home office level.
  • Expanded distribution solutions – a growing segment of consumers really do want to buy online, so companies are offering online distribution as a solution.
  • Online underwriting risk analysis using AI and predictive analytics is changing the way we underwrite risk. In addition, insurance carriers and start-up companies are collaborating to help improve customer health and wellbeing.
  • Insurance operational efficiency and improved business performance will save insurance carriers millions of dollars, while improving the customer’s experience.

Successful business owners are always looking for new ways to improve their business and become more profitable. How about you? Are you looking for new tools and solutions to improve your business?

Here are a few ideas:

  • Have a mindset for change and embrace the new ways your carriers want to do business. It will be a win for both of you and your customers.
  • Deliver service that delights your customers and use the latest business tools to communicate often. Clients will stay with you, if you stay with them.
  • Find a tech-savvy person to teach you how to use your smartphone, CRM, and newest illustration system.
  • Ask your clients about their communication preferences, and build them into your annual client service plan.

As we begin a new year, it is time to update your approach to the business. After all everyone else is investing in ways to be more productive. How about you?

AUTHOR BIO: James Kerley is Chief Membership Officer, LIMRA/LOMA, where he provides industry research-based perspective, and business consulting to executive teams globally. Over the years, Kerley has consulted with and trained thousands of sales managers and professional insurance advisors in areas of sales training, business development, client needs analysis, market segmentation, sales communications, lead generation and local market awareness building.

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