Being an insurance broker is at the same time a challenging and rewarding career option. You get to work with varied types of individual customers as well as business houses both small and large. Most importantly it is a career that you can easily follow from the comfort of your home as most of your clients will be available either online or over phone. However, as with all home based work, you have to follow a system that you would if you were working out of a separate office.
Here are a few tips to follow if you want to start on an insurance broker career from home.
Have a separate home office – You have to create a traditional office environment at home if you want to be successful. Make sure that any distractions from pets, television, refrigerator or family members do not encroach in your space or thoughts. Only then can you be truly productive. Have a room that is separate from the main living area and convert it into an office. It will be easier for clients to approach you without having to walk into your home and personal living space.
Choose a specific branch of insurance – You have the option of choosing one of the many specialities that are available in the insurance sector. These include health, auto, life, home, industrial and commercial as well as complementary insurance. Being a specialist in one field will give you a competitive edge over general brokers as people will know that you can deal with any complex problems in that specific area of insurance. Top brokers even breakdown a niche into clearly defined specialisations such as group benefits, employee protection insurance and long term care insurance.
Network with insurance companies – You have the choice of working as an individual broker or with one specific insurance company. In the first case you can create options for your clients that suit them the best after choosing plans from multiple insurance companies. In the second case you will be bound by plans offered by one insurance company only. Hence the key to being successful is to establish a strong network with insurance companies.
Cast around for referrals – The best marketing of your business will be done by your clients only. A satisfied customer will always speak highly of you to their friends and relatives and this word of mouth will positively impact your business and bring in additional clients. Maintain regular contact with your clients, even when a policy renewal is not around the corner. If you know that clients are happy with you, do not hesitate to ask for referrals. You can be sure that they will oblige you. No technologically advanced marketing strategy can beat this basic referral concept for improving business.
Get necessary licences – Apart from the usual educational qualifications, the exams that you have to pass and the certifications that you have to obtain before you can start a career as an insurance broker, you will also have to get the necessary licences. Most States stipulate that you have to be licensed before you can start selling insurance legally. You may also have to retake exams and renew certifications every couple of years. Contact your local regulatory body or search online for full details and do what is necessary before you start selling insurance.
Finally, even after you have established your business, you should not stop the learning process. Network with other insurance specialists, attend seminars and conferences and read trade journals to know about the innovations being introduced in the industry. Only then can you offer optimised advice to your clients.