Can independent insurance agents increase customer retention through the insurance claim process?

You are sitting in your office and the phone rings. It’s the client calling to tell you that they have got in an accident. They have already reported the insurance claim online, but now what?

They don’t know what to do next. Who should the client contact? What is the next move in the insurance claim process?   

You were the first person that came to their mind! Why? Because you were their first human contact in their insurance journey.   

During the workers’ compensation claims process, insurance producers’ handover the process to the claims adjuster. The insurance claim process should not be an agent’s headache. And that’s true. It is the claims adjuster that plays a much more significant role in the claim process.  

Then why should you get involved in the insurance claim process?

Let’s dive into facts!  

According to IIAD, the insurance industry has higher customer acquisition costs than any other sector.    

Furthermore, NS Insurance reports that it costs 6-7 times more for an independent insurance agent to attract a new customer than to retain a current one.   

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What does this mean for you as an independent insurance agent?

 It would cost you more to acquire a new prospect when you could be spending far less on retaining one.   

Recently, the McKinsey report showed that a satisfied customer is 80% more likely to renew their current policies than unsatisfied ones.   

Captive Agents have a clear path designed by their carrier when it comes to the claim process. They do not have much freedom. Since their contractual obligations bound them, they can provide only limited assistance during this process.    

On the other hand, independent insurance agents deal with various carriers. And each carrier’s claim handling process is different. Most carriers use call centers and online platforms for the insurance claim procedure. 

Independent insurance agents can also become a part of an insurance cluster to gain access to numerous insurance carriers. Additionally, agents can provide a variety of options from multiple insurance carriers to their clients. Thus, agents will have more opportunities to build stronger relations with their clients with an insurance carrier.
Besides, customers who filed a claim in the last policy are amongst the ones that likely will not renew. Why? Because it is a tiresome, tedious process.   
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How do you retain your current client?

Simple answer: by providing them the best customer experience! Mainly, by giving it in the most vulnerable time, i.e., the insurance claim process.    

Becoming an insurance agent is all about handling your customers’ everchanging needs and keeping yourself up-to-date with them.   

Claims process is undoubtedly a tough time for insureds who have their resources in danger. Not all carriers have a swift claims response. That can put your business in grave jeopardy.   

According to Accenture, 47% of the customers will stop doing business with a brand when they face a moment of disappointment.   

And, as Keith McComb, director of INSURICA, says, “If someone has a bad experience, it no longer matters to them that the insurance policy they purchased was cheaper than competitors’ policies.”   

It’s during the insurance claim process when clients look for a trusted advisor. You can use it to your benefit.   

Yes, agents have no control over the claims verdict, but you can control whether the clients have a positive or negative claims process experience.

Independent Insurance Agents and Insurance Claim Process   

For many insured, independent insurance agents are the first point of contact.  

Use it to your advantage!   

When you get a call from your insured, firstly settle them down. Ask the clients about their well-being and assure them — assurance on solving their problems.  

Let the client know that you’re there for them if anything happens. Passing negative comments at the time of claim can shape the view of how the client sees you as an insurance agent.    

Above all, your client is going through a hard time, so follow-up frequently with them, and give emotional support.    

Be the point of contact for both clients and the insured. Communicate any confusions and questions either party might have.  

If they don’t get the best impression of your service, it might be a catalyst for them to switch agents!  

Besides, Motista states when your customers have an affectionate connection with you, they will have a 306% higher lifetime value.   

What more should you do as an Independent Insurance Agent? 

Firstly, as an independent insurance agent, familiarize yourself with the insurance claims process of the carriers you represent.   

Be the mediator between the carrier and insured, even in the claims process (not just during policy renewal!).   

You might want to clear any concerns your client has about the insurance claim process, such as:  

  • How long will the process take?  
  • Who evaluates their loss? 
  • How is it assessed?  
  • Can the insurance carrier deny the claim? 
  • How filing a request can affect their rates?  

If you feel like their claim might be denied unjustifiably, intervene! Negotiate on behalf of your clients so that they feel valued. But always remember to be careful when advocating for your client!  

You must also be rational not to overpromise coverage. Overpromising might bring a lawsuit to your table. This is when e&o insurance for insurance agents comes into action. Keep yourself protected from all the possible risks that could occur. It can protect you from claims related to exposures such as negligence, mistakes, and failure to deliver services.

Furthermore, you could also add the insurance agency management system as one of your tools to run your agency. It will help you streamline all your tasks and help you improve relationships with your clients.

As an agent, you play an integral role in your client’s claim process. Be empathetic. Follow up on your client regularly until the very end process.   

Sometimes clients have an unfortunate experience and don’t inform you. It would help if you embraced the complaints. Learn from it. Apologize. And retain the client.   

Make sure to give the best insurance claims experience to your clients.  

When clients get the best customer experience from you, they are less likely to walk out of your business.  

What more can independent insurance agents do? Comment below and let us know. 

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Schedule a call right now and learn how you can ease your work, sell more, and increase your profits!

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