Help! Any Tips for a Beginner??

Dec 3, 2015

  1. ZboyleHST

    ZboyleHST New Member

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    Hey guys, I've been working in this industry since September with almost no luck. I've made very few sales so far and can't figure out what is wrong...
    I apologize if this starts to sound like rambling, I'm just extremely frustrated and keep adding things to it.

    When I was introduced to the company I work for they were so energetic about how great it is and that during open enrollment people are always looking for insurance. I didn't have a whole lot of money at the time, but thought.. "What the heck, the numbers/commissions they're showing me are great. I'll give it a shot." I've worked in retail sales, but never done anything over the phone before.

    Now I've always been told that the toughest time in a sales career is usually around your first 3-4 months. The issue is that I can't find anybody who will listen to what I can do for them. And those that do just want me to save them money and have no interest about the quality of their plan. I've spoken to our company's #1 agents and they're biggest thing was making 100 calls a day. The only thing is that these aren't 100 calls to 100 different people. It consists of 3 touches the first day (Morning/Afternoon/Evening), a touch the 2nd day, 4th day, 6th day, 9th day. All including voicemails for every call.

    These calls are all to leads that come through our system. Most being Aged Leads that were once fresh and now are 3-12 months old. Most of these people don't pick up the phone, they've been called by 3 or 4 other agents in our company, and I'm wasting a majority of my time leaving these voicemails to people who will never call me back.

    If I ever reach 100, which most of the time I get too frustrated to get past like 50 or 60.. It looks like this.

    About 80 of those calls are voicemails, 15 are people who are either uninterested now or get it through their employer, and the 5 who are interested are typically flat broke and want their plan a couple hundred dollars cheaper than anything I can offer them. I know my job is to find their pain and create value, but once I finally get someone on the phone I'm completely surprised and forget what to say.

    I'm already out of money, in a little bit of debt (which feels like a lot when there is nothing coming in), and I don't want to give up. But don't know what
    I should be doing to find more people who are interested. Part of me wants to eliminate the voicemails and multiple calls to the same lead so that I may actually start talking to more people, but everybody else swears by what I've been told. I believe in it too, but I'm at the point where I need to make some sales/money first before I can passively prospect like this.

    I don't have the money to buy leads or advertise, so the phone is really my only option. I'm also 23 years old and use Facebook, but can't figure out how to market myself to people my age. Most aren't interested in health insurance (to my knowledge).

    As far as marketing to the right people, and the way that the marketplace works. The wealthier people are all getting their plans paid for by employers, but may be interested in improving their coverage (Of course none of the leads I receive are ever in this bracket), middle range (like 40-80k?) are still getting it through work or are trying to get it even cheaper (even though most of the time their group plan is cheaper than what I can offer), and the 15-40k who's family qualifies for subsidy but they don't want anything to do with "Obamacare" and are unrealistic about the cost their insurance should be.

    If you guys have any advice to give to a new agent I would really appreciate it.
  2. thomasm

    thomasm Guru

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    Find out who the top performers are and sit next to them. Take them out to lunch and pick their brain. Ask to listen in on their calls. Have them listen to your calls. Stop leaving messages and you'll make more than 100 calls.

    All a lead is, is just an excuse to start a conversation. You have to quickly find what was the reason they filled out the lead, and discern whether there's a need. If there isn't, disposition the call, and move on to the next lead.

    Those people that just want you to save them money are your best prospects. They are already forking over money to an insurance company. You don't have to convince them, they are already buyers, you just need to find them a better rate. You ability to do that might be hindered if you don't have the most competitive carriers in your bag.


    I would consider a different line other than individual health. Read some of the old individual health threads. Obamacare pretty much killed what was once a lucrative market for agents.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2015
    thomasm, Dec 4, 2015
  3. OregonDave

    OregonDave Super Genius

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    Where you located, friend? And are you in a call center or working from home?

    If you are a skilled telesales professional, buy leads, or better yet, live calls. If you're green, find an inside position with a reasonable contract release policy that will train you and read here frequently.

    Most importantly, if you can cross-sell a dental, accident and critical illness policy with your sales then you can thrive in the industry. If not, then go sell auto insurance. Major medical is a lost leader and merely a conversation starter for other products that the consumer ought have anyway.
  4. TN_agent

    TN_agent Guru

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    Get out while you still can!

    I know a new agent who has done okay going around to restaurants/fast food places (where they don't offer a group plan, independent or small franchises mostly) and putting the people on cheap bronze plans. Specifically targeting younger people who have to file taxes and make over 12k a year, are not covered on a parent's plan, and will be subject to the penalty. They don't really care about the insurance but do care about the fine. The penalty for next year is big enough that a $5/month plan is looking better and better and they can go and get their birth control prescription and pap smear/STD test as part of their annual exam.

    I wouldn't spend my time doing it at this point, but when starting from scratch might not be a bad idea to make a few calls to managers and offer to come in and enroll people for free on-site during their break. You need to get some money coming in, being in the red is no fun and it doesn't sound like the cold leads you are getting are worth the time you are putting in.
  5. Mrs.A.Mann

    Mrs.A.Mann Expert

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    Get in front of people as often as possible, talk to your family and friends and ask to review their policies (for the practice), give out your cards and explain your "why."
    Swagger is important. It's a mix of experience, confidence and credibility and it needs to come of the cuff naturally. Build your credibility by knowing about your products, how they relate to your competition and overall market trends.
    The only way I developed it was by eating, breathing and sleeping this stuff.
    If you're selling med sups then you need to know how Medicare advantage works and how they don't work. And vice versa.
    And I hate to say this but I've worked with thousands of customers at the carrier and individually as a broker and I still learn every day. It's like SimCity, 2016 Texas Broker.
    Btw, I'm new too, 1.5 years.


    And yes, I read you're telemarketing. I was too but found I'm much more personable f2f and now come across more knowledgeable over the phone because I increased my depth of knowledge because kind folks allowed me to fumble around until I learned.
  6. AgentStone

    AgentStone Super Genius

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    Know the product(s) inside out.
    Learn about your target market.
    Set daily goals.