- Get Informed
Certifications! Do them! You might not like the idea of having to do a test to be able to sell a product, but when you’re working with a product that the government likes to keep an eye on, you’ll want to protect yourself with knowledge. Most (if not all) Medicare Advantage carriers will allow you to use the AHIP certification- this means that you only really need to do one test that will count for about 80% of all the needed carrier certifications.
- Don’t get overloaded with information
When you’re starting out with selling in the Medicare market, you don’t need every single carrier under the sun. Stick with the few that standout in your local area. A successful agent is one that can find the right plan without bombarding a client with 10 different choices. Contact your N&F Sales Manager or Marketing rep to assist with finding the best plans in your area.
- Pre-Appointment Fact Finding
I would argue that one of the best habits you can get yourself into is to do your fact-finding before you are on the actual appointment. When you’re on the phone with a referral or a lead, make sure you ask them some basic fact finding questions that will ensure that you’re prepared.
Who is their PCP and who are the other docs they wouldn’t want to live without?
What prescriptions are they taking?
Are they on Medicare right now? Medicare Advantage? Medicare Supplement?
Are they receiving government assistance? (Medicaid, food stamps, LIS)
These questions will go a long way for you in determining what to show your client. With a little fact-finding up front, you are going to be able to narrow it down to what should only be a couple of options for your client. Use those in conjunction with being organized and you’ll have a much smoother appointment process.
- Be Organized
Being organized is imperative to being a great agent. Have separate drawers, folders and files for your different carriers. Go-To carriers should always have plenty of supplies on hand which includes more than just an app. You will want to ensure that you have brochures, rates, and ancillary product information on hand to be able to provide your clients with any information they might need. Take an inventory right now. Do you need any additional kits/supplies? Let us know! We’re happy to place an order for you or even walk through carrier sites to show you how to do it as well!
- Get comfortable talking with seniors
So you’re contracted with the best carriers in your area, you’ve completed certifications, did your needs analysis and are ready for the appointment; but you’ve never worked with seniors before. What now? This might not apply for all of our agents, but for some of our newer agents, it’s not always easy to talk through the age gap between themselves and their potential clients. In this case, let the client do the talking for you. Ask open-ended questions and keep probing them for more information. If you’re at their home, ask about their family, kids, and recreational activities. You are providing them a service, so you’ve got to get to know these folks if you want to put them on the best plan in their area.
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