How to Attract Young Insurance Agents
This probably isn’t the first time you’ve heard this, but the average age of a life & health insurance agent is 56 years old. This is great when you think about the amount of experience and knowledge of the industry these people have (which every insurance consumer wants from their agent), but someone has to take over the industry as these people move closer to retirement.
So, how can your agency attract younger insurance agents? Further, how can you help these agents be successful when only about 10% of new insurance agents make it through their first 5 years?
6 Tips for Recruiting & Retaining Young Agents
Southern States Insurance shares their “6 Secrets for Recruiting and Retaining Young Agents” which I’ll sum up for you:
- “Fish in their pond.” If you aren’t using social media to post your job openings, you should definitely consider it. Young people are actively looking for jobs on social media, especially LinkedIn. Some even post on their own profiles asking if anyone knows of openings in their field.
- Provide an incentive for other young agents to recruit them. Many employers offer a financial incentive for anyone who recruits an employee who then is hired and stays with the employer for X amount of months or years—up to you. This is a great way to encourage your young agents (if you have them) to seek out other people like them to join your agency. Include your younger agents while interviewing as well so the interviewee is assured there are others who are younger like him/her.
- Provide sales training & let them use social media. Whether this is an external seminar or simply job-shadowing another agent for a certain period of time, definitely provide sales training. Also, create an atmosphere where everyone is allowed to use social media (or other online tools) as marketing tools at work. Southern States Insurance recommends these books for your agents to read when they first come into your agency:
- Remind them of the advantages of being a young agent. These advantages include familiarity with social media and other online marketing tactics, online networking (like LinkedIn groups), and coming into an industry with a lot of potential (more people going out than coming in). This isn’t to say that older agents aren’t tech-savvy or comfortable with the internet, younger agents just grew up with it.
- Be a mentor. Young agents, especially brand new ones, need a mentor. Partner your young agents with experienced agents and build a mentor program where they meet every month, for example, and create an atmosphere where questions are encouraged so the mentor can identify what really motivates the agent. This will help build your young agents’ confidence in their own abilities and will provide an open, trusting office setting.
- Encourage them to create lasting relationships with clients. Unfortunately, some commission models encourage new business far more than they encourage maintaining positive relationships with current clients. Southern States Insurance challenges agencies to pay the same amount for new business as you do for renewal business. Though this may not work for your agency, you can see the point here. Young agents need to see that relationships with current clients are just as important as bringing in new business. Not to mention, selling to existing clients is 40% easier than selling to a brand new lead. Most important, your agency doesn’t want to be the type that prioritizes new sales over client relationships. If you do, you’ll lose clients regularly.
As with any employees, recruiting and retaining young agents is all about giving them the right tools to succeed. But, it also depends on the agent’s self-devotion to his/her career. Another resource to point them towards is The Agent’s Guide to Selling, Building, and Growing Your Brand. This guide has tips for agents of all experience levels for building a successful sales career for themselves. Check it out: