Blog + Magazine

  • Blog

    Give Your Agency the Commercial Advantage

    There’s no doubt about it: the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we do business. It’s likely most of your commercial customers are struggling. You yourself may be fighting to keep your agency afloat. It may even be tempting to press pause on communicating with your commercial customers and wait out the pandemic — I strongly encourage you to fight that impulse.
  • Blog

    Adapting to Changes One Day at a Time

    Who would have thought we would be facing such an uncertain future just a few short months ago? I think many of us believed this would be a temporary disruption, and now many states are facing an undetermined amount of time that businesses will be shut down, which is a scary prospect for much of the population.
  • News

    Smart Choice® Tops 8,000 Agency Partners

    Smart Choice®, remains the nation’s fastest-growing independent agency network, after partnering with over 350 new agencies in the first quarter of 2020, and reaching a milestone of 8,000 agency partners this week.
  • Blog

    The Essential Role of E&S Market vs. Perception

    There is a prevailing thought amongst P&C agents that Excess, Surplus and Specialty lines markets are only used for those one-off type risks, or poor and high risk business. While E&S is certainly used for placing one-off risks, it is also a good home for risks that have been denied by a standard carrier for a variety of reasons.
  • Blog

    How Agents Can Win with Affluent Accounts

    Unlike other demographics, the affluent account segment is seeking peace of mind and protection, not just low prices. This lower price sensitivity means that these customers are looking for a trustworthy agent to help them find the proper coverage, and once they find that agent, they are likely to stick with them.
  • Blog

    The Key to Keeping Your Customers: Get a Ticket on Their Train

    I first met Theron about 15 years ago when I was switching from a nice dependable job like teaching to something strange and unusual called sales. I suppose you could say that Theron was, in many ways, a mentor for me. Back then, he had 15 years of sales experience and I was always amazed at how easy he made selling look. For whatever reason, perhaps out of pity, he took to suggesting things for me to do and try.
  • Blog

    If You're Not Writing E&S, You're Leaving Money on the Table

    There’s a common misconception that excess & surplus (E&S) and specialty lines coverage is only for business that has been historically rated high-risk or for those one-off, hard-to-place risks that cross your desk a few times a year. But as carriers tighten their requirements for writing standard business, having relationships with E&S carriers can help you provide essential coverage for homeowners and business owners who don’t qualify for standard policies.
  • Blog

    Tornado Preparedness

    According to the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the U.S. experiences over 1,000 tornadoes each year, far more than any other country. Agents can help their clients be more prepared by offering a few important safeguards.
  • Blog

    Announcing a More Robust Express Markets program

    A little over two years ago, I had the pleasure of joining the Smart Choice team and was charged with the task of expanding and enhancing the Express Markets program. Smart Choice made an intentional investment in this program to position it as a growth engine for our agents by providing access to markets for excess, surplus and specialty lines. I started the process with the mind-set of: How can we help Smart Choice® agents expand their businesses?
  • Blog

    Renting Residences Yet Buying Vacation Homes

    As housing values continue to rise, particularly in major cities, home ownership is a challenge for millennials, who, on average, need to save 6.4 years’ worth of their total annual pay to afford a down payment on a home1. Affordable vacation homes are an alternative way to build equity and enter home ownership.