Below are five different ways you can approach the close:
1. Sell the Value
Discuss with your client what makes a product you’re recommending more suitable for them based on their specific situation versus what they could get from another carrier (or another broker). If one carrier offers a plan that includes a similar network but with lower premiums, it’s okay to sell based on cost. However, if the plan you’re recommending is more expensive, be sure to explain how the plan is worth the price. Check with your prospect to see if there are any specific doctors, specialists, or hospitals they would want to see if they were to switch health plans. A good tip is to use visual aids to better and more clearly explain the differences in provider networks or prescription drug benefits between the considered plans. Visible data is generally more easily understood, and according to research, 90% of people make decisions based on visual data. Visuals are processed much faster than verbal information, and your customer is more likely to buy from you if they feel like they understand what you are saying.
2. Share Examples and Ask Questions
Examples are a common but powerful way to explain a situation to someone. Share examples with your customers of how you’ve helped others in their situation. Ask them questions to discover what they value as important. You could even ask about their current insurance plan and if they’ve experienced any dissatisfaction while covered under the plan. Being personable can help you develop a connection with your customers making them believe you will properly take care of them.
It can be good practice to gather your sales team to share the different objections you’ve heard to better prepare for future encounters.
3. Take Your Time
Some salespeople will champion a “now or never” or “urgency” style close; however, in an insurance or employee benefits sales-type situation, it doesn’t tend to have positive results. It’s unlikely the plan you recommend will be offering any type of gift or discount, which would typically act as an incentive in those types of closes. The most you can do to utilize such a close is to use your knowledge of an upcoming rate increase to push for an earlier effective date or towards a different plan altogether. If there is a bonus program in place, it is likely to benefit you but perhaps not so much for your client, depending on their situation. There’s no need to force the close prematurely. Sometimes it’s best to close so you may continue the conversation at a later time rather than pushing the issue and losing the prospect.
4. Under-Promise and Over-Deliver
If you find yourself working with someone who wants coverage effective immediately, don’t commit to a date without knowing what can be expected. Different carriers have different requirements, and some are easier to negotiate than others. There are many steps that must be taken in the underwriting and enrollment of an insurance contract, and not many can be expedited. Depending on their situation, they may not have access to the tools used to speed things up, like access to a computer. Keep the conversation open with your clients to make sure expectations are understood.
5. Don’t Try Too Hard
Rather than focusing on the close, focus on how to best help the client. Make sure the plan you’re offering makes sense according to their situation, medically and financially. If you push too hard, it’s more likely your prospect will push back. Make sure to listen properly, discuss the situation, and share what you know appropriately. Pay attention, so you don’t miss the signal that your prospect is ready to buy.
Regardless of how the conversation ends, don’t forget to follow up. If you closed the sale, send a thank you or a message asking how they are doing. If the sale was unsuccessful, don’t give up. Their views or circumstances may change in your favor later, making them more receptive to your offerings.
If you have any further questions, the professionals at Agent Pipeline are here to help at 800.962.4693.