I just read a recent McKinsey report entitled “Agents of the
Future: The Evolution of Property & Casualty Insurance Distribution”. I have to tell you it wasn’t good news.
Independent agents are being overshadowed by insurance companies
dealing directly with consumers. Consumers have been programmed via
extraordinary amounts of advertising to see auto insurance as a commodity. They
no longer appreciate the value an independent agent brings to the purchase of
insurance, especially auto insurance.
The truth is as independent agents you have been out spent
and out hustled. For too long you have avoided advertising who you are and the
unique value you bring to buying insurance. As individual insurance agencies
you can’t match the finances of the insurance carriers who spend hundreds of
millions of dollars each year. So how do you get your message out to consumers
and get seen where those consumers go to buy insurance?
The answer is the Trusted Choice® brand and Project CAP. You
need to band together and promote the Trusted Choice® brand that communicates
the value of buying insurance from an independent agent. The brand wasn’t meant
to overshadow your agency and who you are, it was meant to identify you as part
of a nationwide group of independent insurance agents that offer a unique value
to their clients. That is the ability to offer your client insurance coverage
customized to meet their specific needs from a choice of insurance companies
backed up by personal service and professional assistance when a claim occurs.
You notice I didn’t mention price? That’s because price shouldn’t be the first
or only consideration in buying insurance protection. Instead consumers need to weigh the
competiveness of the price they are given against the value of the service
To help you promote the brand, Trusted Choice® is offering to
split the cost of your marketing efforts up to a $500 contribution on their
part. We encourage each and every member to take advantage of the Trusted
Choice® Marketing Reimbursement Program.
Project CAP is the digital marketing piece of the Trusted
Choice® brand. It will get independent agents recognized by consumers who go
online and allow them to explore the prices offered by independent agent
carriers and then pick an agency that meet certain criteria important to
consumers. If you haven’t updated your profile you want to do so right away. Here
on how to update your profile and a link to the
actual Project CAP site. Although New York won’t go live with online quoting
until the first quarter of 2014 consumers looking for New York agents are being
directed to the site right now. Make sure they see your enhanced profile and
have the opportunity to choose to contact your agency.
It’s up to YOU now. If you choose not to support and promote
the brand then you have chosen to take on the giants of the insurance industry
all by yourself. If you choose not update your profile and be seen by consumers
online then I wish you all the luck in the world in reaching out to the 75% of
consumers who go online to research and explore buying insurance. The decision
is yours and I hope you make the right one because the future of your agency is
riding on it.