Winter is coming: Prepare your customers for it

Posted on: Monday, October 28, 2013

Due to the bitter cold and the fewer hours of sunlight, winter may seems like it's one of the more less inspired times of the year for insurance agents. But, as ProducersWeb contributor Justin Brown pointed out, this can actually be one of the more profitable periods for industry professionals - so long as agents answer the door when opportunity knocks.

That's because insurance customers take advantage of this time of year by taking care of things around the house, Brown pointed out, doing things like getting the car tuned up so it's ready to handle what Mother Nature dishes out, performing maintenance on their property and looking over their existing insurance policies, both for auto and home.

"[This] is when personal finance is at the top of their mind, and an insurance risk manager - you - should be ready to strike while the iron is hot," said Brown.

Encourage customers to review
This is especially true come January, which is the traditional period for New Year's resolutions. Agents may want to act on the occasions well, sending out a note by email or through social media - preferably in November of December - reminding customers why this is the best time of year to ask questions about coverage and to also review their existing plans. They may need to be adjusted, depending on what policyholders did with regards to their homes or automobiles over the past 12 months. For example, if they refurbished their house or added a safety installation to their vehicle, plans may need to be altered

Something else agents may want to do is distribute a winter maintenance newsletter. Brown said that this is a great way to inform clients that they're being thought of, as retaining the proper upkeep of a residence can help diminish their needing to file a claim after sustaining damage caused by winter weather.

The Insurance Information Institute serves as a great resource for what tips agents may want to include in a maintenance schedule. For example, the best way to prepare a home for the cold weather is by taking care of tasks both inside and outside the house. On the outside, homeowners should clean out their gutters, consider installing gutter guards to prevent debris from reappearing and seal cracks in walls and foundations. Meanwhile, on the inside, their efforts should relate to ensuring that warmth remains inside the home, as excess energy costs can be substantial. Adding insulation to attics and crawl spaces, having the furnace serviced and putting in a programmable thermostat are all ways in which to do this.

Posted In: Insurance News, Property & Casualty Insurance, Sales Techniques

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