Millennial shoppers believe there’s always a better deal to be found, and that puts insurance agencies on the hotseat come renewal time.
Proactivity is a must. By the time clients receive a renewal notice from the carrier, they’re already shopping. Shopping has never been faster or simpler, and today’s customers are less and less likely to reach out to their agent once they find (what looks like) a better deal. Poof! They’re just gone.
To make retention a focus (and a competitive advantage) for your agency, there are two very basic things you must do:
- Analyze 100% of renewals.
- Communicate with 100% of insureds.
It sounds straightforward enough, but the trick is to implement at scale across your entire agency’s book. Where do you start?
The first step is to have a process. Repeatable success won’t happen without a plan, and that plan is something your agency needs to be working daily—not weekly, and certainly not monthly. Each member of your agency should have an assigned role, a list of daily goals, and the tools on hand to achieve them.
Next, you must commit your agency to touching 100% of renewals. Again—once clients receive their new rates from the carrier, they’re already shopping (without you). That means you need to touch clients before the carrier.
No agent wants to receive that angry “Why did my rates go up?!?” call, and the only prevention is to get out in front of the situation.
A client’s risk level usually boils down to two questions:
- How large was the rate increase?
- What are the reasons for it?
An on-screen comparison of the current and renewing policies is the quickest way to answer these questions. If there is an obvious reason for the rate increase (new car, coverage changes, etc.), viewing them side-by-side will quickly discover it.
Clients at highest risk are typically those facing significant rate increases. You’ll want to evaluate their policies first. If you recognize their renewal is out of line with the market, communicate that. Let them know better options are available and reassure them that you’re already working on it. On the other hand, if the client’s new rates are in line (just higher), be ready to explain the premium increase.
For clients less at risk, you still need to stay ahead of the game. Communicate that you’ve proactively reviewed their renewal. Reassure them that their policy is in line with the current market, and you’re available to talk further.
It’s important to know when (and when not) to remarket. As retention becomes a daily priority, your agency will gain a feel for it.
- What does the client value?
- How big was the impact of the state rate change?
- What’s happening in the carrier market, or with the product offering?
When you educate your clients on current market conditions, it demonstrates that you have their best interests at heart, and you are putting in the work as their agent to keep them in the best possible coverage.
If the thought of proactively touching every single one of your clients at renewal time seems daunting, that’s where technology comes in.
EZLynx Retention Center is a single, focused user interface that brings all the tools you need to investigate, proactively communicate, and manage renewals with your insureds. Best of all, it functions completely within the familiar EZLynx ONE PLATFORM, placing everything at the fingertips of your staff. Because renewals are downloading to your agency management system, you will have all the actionable details on hand prior to them being received by your clients—exactly the head start you need.
Retention Center’s patented predictive analytic risk models identify which clients are most at risk and calls them to your attention, including a summary of premium-bearing changes between the insured’s current policy and the carrier’s renewal offer. These Change Reasons save hours of time previously spent by agency staff manually comparing dec pages.
A Difference Report is also available to dig deeper, with a side-by-side comparison of the two policies and all the pertinent differences highlighted. Should you need to, you’ll also have the tools at hand to remarket in seconds. And with customizable email templates you’ll be able to communicate with insureds directly from the tool.
Retention Center also leverages EZLynx Automation Center to automate client communication and create tasks for your staff. Lower-risk renewals can automatically be triaged through simple strategies like email send-outs thanking customers for their continued trust. This triaging can be based on percentage increase of the policy premium, for example.
Some clients are always going to believe that a better deal is out there… your job is to make sure they see your agency as the path to finding it.
The secret to retention is saving the business before it needs saving in the first place. And that requires a proactive, regular, repeatable process… at scale, across your entire book of business. When you intelligently streamline the entire customer renewal process, retention soon becomes a cornerstone of your business and its long-term growth.