Traditional insurance “selling” has not always gone hand in hand with good customer service. Traditional insurance selling often consists of a sales person trying to convince a buyer of the benefits of the product he/she is selling. Conversely, good customer service involves determining the customer’s needs and concerns first, and then determining how to best provide solutions. The difference is in the mindset of the sales professional. You can actually provide good customer service while “selling” if you view selling as offering a value added service to your customer. This starts with how the sales professional views the process. To give you an example, here is how a customer centered first sales call might look like.
- Prepare as much as you can. Learn as much as you can about the account and the person with whom you are meeting.
- The goal of a customer centered sales call is not to “sell” but learn about the client; their needs, issues and concerns, in order to determine if you can offer solutions.
- I recommend that you try to go as long as possible during the call without using the word “insurance”.
- Do not pull out your product brochure or marketing materials at the first call, ever!
- Ask open-ended questions (who, what, where, when, why, how, how much, tell me about it, describe for me).
- Ask the client what is important to them.
The overriding objective should be to determine if there is a fit and connection between your two firms. Do you have the ability to solve problems for them? Look for more on customer centered selling in the next few months.