In today’s episode of Agency Intelligence, host Jason Cass ends the year 2019 and the decade of 2010  as well with a special agency discussion with Ryan Hanley, Founder and Chief Strategist at Hanley Media, and Scott Howell and Bradley Flowers from The Insurance Guys podcast. They provide their shared insurance expertise, discussing everything from the impact of technology on the insurance industry, direct to consumer marketing, producers and account managers, how to properly treat and inspire your staff, and structured and unstructured data. 

Episode Highlights:

  • How would Ryan Hanley and Scott describe 2019 in three words?
  • What is the first thing Scott addressed when transitioning to independent? 
  • What are some things that have changed between 2010-2015?  
  • How has the term ‘insurtech’ viewed these days? 
  • Technology is coming into the insurance whether agents like it or not. 
  • Agents need to understand how they can best deliver their services and connect with clients that want their service provided that way. 
  • Direct to consumer marketing is still important for independent agency carriers.  
  • The Principal Agent’s Dilemma states that carriers have a certain objective and are forced to sell through agents. 
  • Clients need to know who they are and why they need you. 
  • They discuss the future of the customer experience and account manager-centric agencies.  
  • Set the expectations on the front end of selling insurance policies by making it clear who the client should contact if they need assistance.   
  • What are their future predictions for producers and account managers?   
  • What are the differences between structured data and unstructured data? 
  • What has Bradley Flowers found that is working for his new agency that he is getting established? 
  • How do proactive referrals and reactive referrals differ?
  • What are their agencies going to look like in the near future? 
  • Think of your staff as an asset and not as an expenditure.  
  • Having the biggest book of business doesn’t mean you are the most successful.  
  • Some salespeople need to be in service instead. 
  • The statement to staff “That’s what I pay you for” is a loser mentally. 
  • They talk about leadership lessons from the HBO documentary Belichick & Saban: The Art of Coaching.
  • Do something to move your agency forward every week. 

3 Key Points:

  1. Independent agency carriers should have a forward-facing brand and a portion of their marketing budget should go towards direct consumer marketing.
  2. How you compensate people Is how they are going to perform. 
  3. Value your employees as fuel and not as expenses.  

Key Quotes:

  • “If you are having problems with your agency, I can sit here and spit out 5 or 10 podcasts that you can specifically go listen to and get some answers as to what is going on, and you didn’t have that 5 years ago.” – Scott Howell
  • “Questioning things in 2019 is like a part of life. Where in 2009, me and you (Jason Cass) got blackballed from the industry as speakers for saying the same stuff…That is the legacy of the last decade that I’m really proud of.” – Ryan Hanley.
  • “The people in this industry who are trying to keep things the way that it has always been is only because they have a vested interest in that. It is not for anything else.” – Bradley Flowers

Resources Mentioned:

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