For many the prospect of dealing with insurance matters, and such advisors, likely ranks with going to the dentist insofar as anticipatory delight. However, as with oral care, taking care of insurance issues should be faced more sooner than later, if not as frequently.
In the February 2015 issue of ‘The Insurance & Investment Journal’, the latest edition of an advice column for advisors provides commentary on two perspectives in presenting life insurance: how to ‘build desire and enthusiasm’ in prospects to buy; and getting over agent discomfort in getting an effective discussion going with prospects.
With respect to putting more ‘life’ into presentations, the advisor coach notes that a technically sound, feature-based presentation would make a corporate compliance department happy, but the lack of relatable stories or analogies could put prospects to sleep. He states that “An advisor’s job is to provide a prospect with the information they require to make the decisions they need to make to get the results they want… They want to know what the information means to them, not just the details. They want context, not just content.” It’s the real life examples of product benefits in action, and anonymous stories of similar relevant situations, that will enliven the advisor’s presentation.
Also, whether a presentation is written or oral, “…prospects are looking for the executive summary of the situation… They just need to know that YOU KNOW all the intricate details… make the complicated simple so they know enough to buy”.
Concerning starting the conversation, an enlightening statistic is revealed from a recent study, namely that over one-half of financial advisors try to avoid talking about life insurance. Obviously not just the prospect can find this a touchy subject.
In order to stand out from the reluctant crowd and see how worthwhile the overall issue is for prospects, the advisor coach suggests getting into discussions with questions such as:
- Which of the several ways to fund your Will have you chosen? Have you considered the facility of using life insurance?
- How long could your family live on savings, if you were out of the picture and had little or no life insurance? Have you insured your earning power?
- Are you aware that it’s your health which allows you to buy insurance, and money only pays for it?
- Have you outlived your temporary insurance solutions?
- If you have group or association coverage, why not own it personally?
- Do you know anyone unable to buy insurance, and how they feel about it? Have you heard of a surviving spouse being ‘insurance poor’?
The coach ends with the pithy observation that “Life insurance is one of the few products you can only buy when you don’t need it”. He uses the analogy of a parachute, in that if you need it and don’t have it…
When dealing with a professional advisor, he or she has work to do in finding and explaining valid solutions to needs. Understanding their perspective can helpful.