Yes, You Can Become a Better Salesperson

Michael Miller | July 7, 2020

At the end of the day, you can close more sales two different ways: you can talk with more prospects, and you can get better at the sales process. And while you can only hold so many calls and meetings in a day, you can constantly improve your sales skills and sales process. Diverse group of independent insurance agents continuously working to improve their sales techniques.Continuous learning makes your team stronger and your agency more profitable, which is why sales education should be a priority at your agency for producers and CSRs alike. 

Successful Salespeople Are Made, Not Born

As a State Director, I often come across agency owners who are so good at sales, I’m tempted to think they are born salespeople. But the reality is that successful salespeople are made, not born. The great salespeople you know have spent hours listening to prospects’ needs, perfecting their process, and rehearsing their sales scripts. 

Success in sales is more dependent on learning and practice than it is on innate talent. Top-selling agents spend hours learning about their target market, drafting a plan to reach them, and honing their messages. They’ve invested in sales courses for themselves and their producers. They create sales goals and hold themselves and their team members accountable for achieving them. With training and hard work, anyone can become a successful agent. 

Learn and Implement a Proven System

One of the best investments you can make as an independent agent is to learn and implement a proven sales system. A good sales system will help you set sales goals and identify the people and technologies you need to be successful. A sales system also provides you with the resources and the structure you need to meet your goals. 

I offer my agents a proven sales system that includes all the resources they need to become successful salespeople as well as one-on-one mentoring through the process. The system includes templates for a marketing plan, lead generation sources, a flow chart of action items, letter templates, and phone scripts and a separate formal sales system that will eliminate the price objection. Every week, I work with the agent to set a sales goal and follow up on their progress so they are accountable for their efforts. By the end of the process, the agent has all the tools, the expertise, and the confidence they need to succeed. 

Take Advantage of the Knowledge in Your Agency Network

Your Smart Choice® State Director is one of your most valuable resources. Not only do they have personal experience in the insurance industry, they can connect you to training opportunities through carriers and Smart Choice® itself. Did you know the Smart Choice® website has a training tab in the agent portal where you can find all sorts of resources? Don’t forget about the network of Smart Choice® agents in your area, too. You may find one who would love to be your mentor. 

To Make Progress, You Must Actually Get Started

Coy Eklund, the late CEO of The Equitable Life Assurance Society, once said, “It’s what we do regularly—every day, without fail—that determines what we gain or lose.” 

To make progress in sales and grow your agency, you need to put what you’ve learned into action. The formal sales system you invested in will not work unless you do the work. To get better at sales, you will need to send the letters and emails, make the follow up calls, and hold the meetings. It is not enough to learn; you must act. 

Your State Director can connect you to training and learning opportunities to help you improve your sales skills and become a more successful agent. Should you choose to, they can also mentor you and hold you accountable to your goals. The resources to become a fantastic salesperson are all around you—it’s up to you to learn and implement them. 

Alarm clockA Day in the Life of a Successful Salesperson

9 am: Set sales goals for the day

10 am: Follow up with last week’s calls and meetings

11 am: Address prospecting letters and send emails

Noon: Have lunch with a current or prospective Client

1 pm: Send prospecting letters

2 pm: Make sales calls

3 pm: Meet with a prospective client

4 pm: Review the day’s progress and challenges

5 pm: Drive to last meeting with prospective client 

Cover of 2020 Issue 4 Smart Choice Magazine titled "Agent Education: Adapting to Changing Needs in a Changing World"Agent Education: Adapting to Changing Needs in a Changing World

Being in the insurance industry, we've grown accustomed to navigating circumstances completely out of our control (such as weather and other natural disasters) — but the pandemic has really tested our resilience. For more on how agents can adapt to changing needs in a changing world while still providing exceptional service and products, check out the 2020 Issue 4 of Smart Choice Magazine.

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