New Agent with No Advert Budget, Hints to Get Word Out Locally?

Discussion in 'Senior Insurance Forum' started by WildCard, Aug 12, 2017.

  1. WildCard
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    WildCard Member

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    Hello,

    Getting my start in WI with health and life license, going the Medicare advantage and supplement route. I've done my AHIP, UHC, and Humana certs.

    I am torn as the road to get here has me light in any advertising budget. I am all for cold calling and face to face door knocking introductions - but seems the Medicare Advantage rules on unsolicited contact are so restrictive.

    Anything you can recommend as far as how I can put in sweat equity to make a handful of sales - then use the revenue from those sales towards advertising correctly with direct mail? I just need to prime the pump so to speak.

    I am open to all legal methods, hard work and effort is not a problem. My only limit is cash.

    Thanks!
    WC
     
  2. DHK
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    DHK Well-Known Member

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    I don't know all the rules, so you may need to look this up... but I would sell/market a consultation to answer people's questions about what you sell, instead of focusing on selling products. The consultation gets you in the door, and if there's a place for one of your products, then you make the recommendation and the sale.

    In this way, you don't "sell" medicare advantage... but you offer to answer any questions and determine the best way to help people meet their needs.

    Again, I don't know the rules... but it's the way I would go about starting conversations and setting appointments.
     
  3. WildCard
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    Thanks for the reply DHK,

    That is sort of how I was working it - introducing myself as someone that is new to the area and available to help wend seniors through any questions they might have with insurance as they are in an age whereby questions are common.

    I think if questioned or investigated as far as how the sales was made for MA or PDP, it would be deemed non compliant if found it was made by an unsolicited contact via phone or face to face. I could be wrong, and hoping someone would be able to define it for me as this area is strongly MA and MAPD.

    Thanks for the reply!
     
  4. BuckNasty
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    I know you stated that you have zero marketing budget, but perhaps you have access to credit through a credit card or from some other source?

    My cost per client acquisition through direct mail has settled in at about $110. If you can get on advance and sell a pdp here or there too, I think you'll find average commission will be at about $300-$325 or so on t65s depending on your state and contract level.

    The best advice I got here on the forum was from Bevo who said to "put the hammer down" once you find something that works. I can vouch 100% for direct mail still working.

    It seems to me that many people who fail are scared to have too much skin in the game. They don't want to spend very much on their leads. The bottom line is that until you have a few hundred clients, this business sucks, so there is no sense in going slow if you're turning a positive cash flow (or at least breaking even).

    You're not reinventing the wheel here. All the med supp marketing espoused here on the forum, thankfully still works so just go hard...or go home.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  5. WildCard
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    Thanks BuckNasty,

    You are probably right. Maybe I just need to get a smaller mailer out, and instead of doing MA/MAPD/MS, I just focus on cold calling MedSupp so as to stay compliant. Keep rolling money in towards direct mailing.

    Mind me asking for your $110 client ack figure, is that doing all your mailings in house? Is your letter a simple introduction letter to T65s, or something more product specific?

    Thanks for your reply!
     
  6. FLM2
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    FLM2 Well-Known Member

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    In order to achieve the $110 client acquisition cost you would need to start a long term flow of leads mailing at least 6 months out to those turning 65, the cost is not $110 but at least $2K before you start generating income.

    You have no shot at doing MAPD from scratch without a marketing budget, there are more compliance issues than you can imagine and outside of AEP the only target audience is T65.

    I've done my own mailings where the T65 prospect has only my phone number to contact me, you can make sales on a shorter term basis with this but the cost will be equal to the FYC even for someone with many years of experience. For you it will be higher because you are a newbie.
     
  7. WildCard
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    hi FLM2,

    >You have no shot at doing MAPD from scratch without a marketing budget

    Yeah, I am starting to realize that now. I've got an opportunity to work at Walmart or Walgreens during AEP, unsure how valuable those would be but for a newbie as myself, seems a good place to start.

    And maybe it is time to be a little more serious and pull money from 401k to advertise. $2-3k to start seems a fair start to prime the pump.

    Thanks for the clarity.
     
  8. GoPokes
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    GoPokes Well-Known Member

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    You could make 82 million dials to the people in your area, try to crash the network. Everyone in your area will hear about you, you might even get national attention! :)
     
  9. DHK
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    DHK Well-Known Member

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    ... and an $85 million dollar fine. lol. I thought he had no budget!
     
  10. Alston
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    Alston Well-Known Member

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    Would you care to share the DM methods you use?

    PM me if you like. I might have some online methods that would complement your offline marketing ad vice versa.

    ----------

    Seminars and sitting in kiosks are two ways some cash strapped agents get started in MA.

    I've never done either. I had a good book of individual health business before I got serious about MA. I did OK just selling to my clients who were aging in.

    I've heard success stories from agents who have done seminars. Not so much with kiosks. Some of the more successful agents only do seminars.

    Another way around the PTC rules is to connect with a broker who doesn't sell in the Medicare market. If they have an existing business relationship they can call.

    Maybe you can telemarket for them in exchange for any MA sales.

    "Hello Mrs. Gordon, I'm ___ calling on behalf of your agent ______. Do you have any questions about your ____ policy? ...

    ____ will be in your area next week and would like to go over your options with you...

    ... I noticed that you will be turning 65 soon. Is that right? Would you like to receive information about Medicare?"

    I do not know if this is complaint, but if it is, you can generate leads for the other agent for the lines he or she sells and get the MA leads as compensation.

    The agent has to trust you, but if they do, (and this idea is compliant) you can set up annual review appointments for the other agent and you'll both make out.
     
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