7 Highly Effective Habits of Top Producing Insurance Agents
August 29, 2023
Head of Marketing
Ray is the Head of Marketing at Canopy Connect and has helped dozens of startups and growth companies over his 20 year career to develop strategies and implement tactics that yield high impact results.
Becoming one of the most successful top producing insurance agents doesn't happen overnight. But it can happen more quickly if you embrace these tips.
Every successful insurance agent takes a slightly different path and will have unique productivity tips to offer. However, there are some similarities among the top-performing agents across insurance industries.
In today’s brutal market, these habits will help you outshine the competition.
Let’s take a look at some of these common habits so you can incorporate them into your sales process today!
1. Don’t Stop Learning and Improving
Success happens for those who can adapt, change, and grow. Self-development pushes us to try new techniques and strategies, overcome obstacles, and deepen our knowledge.
Insurance agents who are lifelong students have an advantage in their craft. If you truly want to grow your business, you must do more than just get your work done. Successful agents do the extra credit. With a bit of effort dedicated to continuous learning, you keep your insight fresh and your strategies current.
Part of this is staying up to date on insurance industry trends. After all, business is always changing. When you hustle to stay on top of the shifts, you can better serve your policyholders.
While agents are required to engage in continued education to maintain their licenses, you can take further steps by reading industry publications and trade journals and keeping an eye on insurance industry influencers. Follow shifts in the financial sector to better serve clients.
Whether it is through conference sessions, webinars, mastermind groups, podcasts, or structured courses, there is a wealth of information out there.
2. Absorb Lessons from Successful Insurance Agents
Along with independent learning, top-producing insurance agents also seek guidance from their role models. One of the best ways to get ahead in your career as an insurance agent is to learn from a successful mentor.
Even if you work independently, sit down with an influential agent and ask how they found success. Most professionals are happy to connect over an informational interview and share some tips and best practices. What starts as a simple conversation over coffee could turn into a career-long mentorship.
Start the conversation by asking about their professional journey, and then follow up with more specifics on their favorite software programs, sales funnel strategy, and stress management techniques. These conversations will help you develop good habits for your business.
Fortunately, there are many great insurance agency podcasts out there that do this for you. Here are a few of our favorites:
When you work for a commission, the old phrase time is money has a bit more meaning. More time spent reaching out to prospects means more conversions and more profits.
However, you can’t spend 24/7 on the phone. The need to work can be incredibly motivating, but it can be hard to put the work down. Plus, the temptation to check emails from home or multitask will ultimately make you less productive and burn out more quickly. A good work-life balance is essential.
The solution? Schedule your time wisely and use techniques that support deep work. One shared quality of all highly effective insurance agents is the ability to focus. To increase productivity, try to limit distractions and work in time blocks.
During your focus sessions, turn off phone and computer notifications. It may seem obvious to limit social media during work, but this includes emails too. Dedicate one of your work sessions to replying to emails so you aren’t tempted by the distraction when you should be calling prospects.
Work in Time Blocks
To focus on deep work, identify the hours you’re most productive and what time you need to disconnect. Using a timeboxing approach, break your to-do list into work sessions. During a specific session, you only focus on a single task. This will streamline your efforts and improve the quality of your work.
Schedule an hour for a meeting, a couple of hours for lead follow-up calls, and then some time for unstructured work. After a day of timeboxing, you’ll be impressed at how much you’re able to get done without feeling burned out.
You can also try the Pomodoro technique. Work for 25- or 50-minute intervals, then take a five- to 10-minute break. Both strategies have proven benefits for focus. Then, when the work day is done, leave whatever is unfinished for the next day.
4. Think Long-Term and Value Relationships
Focused work will get you in the right direction, but connections are the backbone of a successful insurance agent. Grow your business by building relationships.
When you get caught up in the hustle, it can be tempting to focus only on the numbers. But successful agents never let themselves disconnect from their community. Whether they’re focusing on the needs of their clients or networking with other agents, relationship-building is key to becoming a top-producing insurance agent.
The first way you can build relationships with your prospects is through excellent customer service. People want to purchase insurance policies with agents they can trust. Be available to answer questions, respond to inquiries promptly, and don’t try to oversell clients on policies that are irrelevant to them. These practices show clients you’re on their side, which improves customer retention.
Additionally, never pass up an opportunity to network—even when you’re in line at the dry cleaners. Networking can both boost your reputation and generate referrals.
As an insurance agent, you’re a public figure, and you never know when you might find a new client. Even if you aren’t actively selling a policy, you’re building positive relationships. Remember, success doesn’t happen overnight. It may feel tough at first, but if you lay good foundations for your agency, the clients will come.
5. Become a Modern Agent
Behind every charismatic and successful insurance agent is a system of relevant and up-to-date tools. A knowledgeable agent backed by effective software is unstoppable.
Know Your Stuff
You must understand the broad range of products and services you offer. Every client has slightly different needs. Matching the perfect policy with a customer takes an intimate understanding of your offerings.
What’s more, it’s a good idea to extend your knowledge beyond insurance. Most successful agents also understand the finances, taxes, and legalities of each policy. Don’t overstep your bounds, but any extended advice you can provide is a value-add.
Use the Right Tools
Stay up to date on insurance sales software. For instance, the right customer relationship management (CRM) software will help you manage clients and prospects and help you generate leads and understand what marketing tactics are the most successful. This will help you target your efforts for the best return on investment (ROI).
Some newer systems will revolutionize your work systems, while others may over-complicate your routine. If you aren’t very tech-savvy, find a mentor, a peer, or expert who can recommend a program and guide you through the setup. The right technology will save you time and make administrative work simple so you can build client relationships and sell policies instead.
6. Set, Track, and Achieve Goals
Without a clear method to set and track goals, your career can feel static. Successful insurance agents have a clear way to track their objectives and key results.
Whether you set goals monthly, quarterly, or annually, create a system to track your progress. If you don’t have a way to measure your success, you won’t know when you’ve achieved it. A bit of intention will help you celebrate your wins and target your growth areas.
Goals also help you stay motivated. When you’re trying to reach a clear objective, you feel a sense of achievement every time you make a sale.
7. Be Persistent and Relentless
Every agent gets their fill of no’sbefore they get a single yes. You must be able to handle and bounce back from rejection. A persistent and relentless personality is essential for anyone in the insurance world.
Not all pitches pan out, so you need to be ready to take a no with a smile. Also, understand no often means not right now. In many cases, only a small percentage of your prospect list is poised to buy. The majority may not be in a position to switch policies currently, but they may be ready in a few months.
Focus on building relationships with each call. This way, when prospects are ready to convert, they’ll choose you without question.
Consider the stats. Most conversions happen after the sixth call attempt, though only 8% of salespeople follow up more than five times. The best insurance agents are resilient and understand the need to make that sixth call, even when it feels pointless.
Smart Insurance Agents Find the Right Partner
There’s no simple formula to becoming a successful insurance agent, but the top performers do share some commonalities. For instance, being an avid learner and expert networker will help you find new clients, and persistence and goal-setting will help you grow your business.
Creating a sustainable agency takes more than just attitude. Having the right tools and support to manage your clients’ policies will help you reach the next level in your career. Canopy Connect makes your job easier and improves your customers’ experience.
Sign up to start your free 14-day trial of Canopy Connect.