Not Only for Startups

May 24, 2022

Bryan Clinkscales has seen firsthand how joining a network can benefit established agencies. The following is just part of his success story. To read more about Bryan's journey, download the full case study.


Blurry image of an independent insurance agency meeting to discuss their growth strategy.Every new Smart Choice® agency is different. Some are just starting out, and others are established and self-sufficient. They know which direction that they want to go.

“What we do is go into an agency, see what they need, and what value we can add,” said Kim Carney, Arkansas Smart Choice® state director. “Maybe they need help in the commercial area, or in personal lines, or even life insurance. We see where we can fit in to help enhance their offerings to their customers.”

Bryan Clinkscales’ relationship with Smart Choice® started early on in his agency’s history before his father’s retirement. “A mentor of mine introduced us to Smart Choice® and we did a contract, which gave us the chance to get some markets.” As the years went by, Bryan’s agency grew. When he acquired another Smart Choice® agency years later, he had a chance to look at all the different programs Smart Choice® offered.

 

I like to mentor young agents, and I always tell them that at the end of the day, it’s a partnership between you and your carriers. It has to work for both. —Bryan Clinkscales, owner of Boone-Ritter Insurance

Now Bryan has four locations across the state that use Smart Choice®. From Bryan’s perspective, “I think that flexibility makes Smart Choice® stand out from others in their field. My Smart Choice® team is not hovering over me telling me what I need to do. Instead, we’re able to run our agency exactly as we want to. But I can go to them and say, ‘I have this idea.’ Or they come to me and say, ‘we have this idea.’ Then together we come up with a strategy to accomplish it.”


Cover of a whitepaper titled "The Power of a Network Partnership for Independent Agents."How do you choose the right agency network partner?

It's not a one-size-fits-all decision. Download this whitepaper for more on the questions agencies should ask, what to look out for in your contract, and how to know if a network’s business model is right for you — as you are now and as you grow. 


Bryan was one of Kim’s first agents, “He is a jewel for our whole industry in Arkansas. He is so respected in our insurance community.”

In Kim’s view, the number one quality an agent must bring to the table to be successful is to be prepared to work. “A lot of people think that they’re going to start an insurance agency and be out golfing every week. They think it’s going to be easy, and it’s not. It’s a lot of work.” “Bryan works very hard. He’s not afraid to immerse himself in the office to work on an account or go visit the agency. He makes time for everybody that needs the time. He’s very available and that makes a big difference.

How do you choose the right agency network partner?

It's not a one-size-fits-all decision.

Each agent’s business model is unique, so your network partner needs to be flexible, and provide the solutions unique to your agency’s needs. Download this whitepaper for more on the questions agencies should ask, what to look out for in your contract, and how to know if a network’s business model is right for you — as you are now and as you grow. 

Download the Whitepaper