Working as an independent agent comes with advantages and disadvantages. The plus side of going it on your own is better pay, but the downside is that you do not have the network, or the training that comes with working for a company. But that does not mean that you cannot build your own network with other independent agents. Why build a network? Not only does it help you serve customers better, but you will also open up new opportunities for yourself and make more money in the process!
Agency Network Vs Independent Networking
Are you aware of agency networks? Agency networks are organizations of agencies, carriers and partners that band together to help grow your business. These agencies provide advocacy and resources for independent agencies, in addition to helping independent agents form business relationships. You can choose to join one of these agencies, but there is a fee. Networking with other independent agents on your own, on the other hand, is free. Creating your own circle of agents can be hugely advantageous to everyone involved.
Access to Carriers and Customers
It is no secret that working with a team will help a business grow. The same goes for independent agents. You know it takes a lot of work to build your own business from the ground up, and you need to build a history with carriers before you can get more business. Being part of a network can help you gain access to more carriers. If you choose to go the route of an agency network, they will have ready-made relationships with carriers: an agency network will already be contracted with a carrier and will help you to write business for them. But creating your own network with other independent agents will also offer you access to different carriers, and products.
Competition constantly grows amongst independent agents, which can mean losing customers. However, if you work together with other agents and carriers, you can offer customers more options, and everyone involved will get more business.
Joining an agency network will help you gain access to new carriers and products. You already know that it can be tough to get appointments with carriers if you do not meet their standards of business volume. However, banding together with other independent agents will help meet the carriers’ requirement, allow you to generate and make more appointments with leads, as well as have the time to keep them.
Learn More, Earn More
Networking with other agents will help you stay on top of current market trends, developments, and opportunities that you might be missing. You can learn from others in your field, and share information that will help build your skills and revenue. If you are faced with a problem, speaking with other independent agents in your network can help you to find a solution. Other agents might be facing the same challenges you are, so putting your heads together could be beneficial to everyone. You can learn different strategies that are working for other agents, and vice-versa.
An agency network can be a source of expertise on how to grow your business, as well as a way to dip into other markets and opportunities. Maybe you only sell health insurance, but are thinking of selling Medicare? Don’t know where to start? Rely on your network of agents. Think of this network as your own personal mentor.
Don’t get stuck in your day-to-day routine. Work instead on growing your business. This can be done with the help of a reliable network. When networking with other agents, you not only gain access to insurance carriers’ contracts, but can also increase your income by combing through these carriers’ leads. The market evolves, things change, and you don’t want to get left behind. Stay ahead of the trends, learn new skills, and grow your leads, sales, and opportunities by networking. If you establish yourself in the right network, the pay off is immeasurable.