LTC Marketers Target Pre-Retirees
When David Murray began research about entering the pre-retiree market for long term care insurance in the Washington, D.C., area where he lives, the following demographic caught his eye: Attorneys and real estate agents were the top pre-retirees buyers in that area.
That was good news for Murray, because he had contacts in the real estate market. So, thats where he focused his energies. Now, more than 5 years later, he runs a thriving LTC practice at West Financial Group in Bethesda, Md. He has branched out from real estate agents, but the focus is still pre-retirees.
The story flies in the face of skeptics who believe pre-retirees are not a good LTC insurance market. The skeptics say pre-retirees do not have enough money to buy LTC insurance, are too preoccupied with working and traveling to think about LTC issues, and/or are too opinionated to be receptive to LTC presentations and marketing.
But experts contacted by National Underwriter say the exact opposite is true. For them, the pre-retiree marketage 55-62 or sois huge, aware of LTC, reachable and willing to buy.
But, to be successful, LTC specialists need to address pre-retiree issues and preferences, these experts add.
Keep in mind that the 55-59 and 60-64 age brackets now account for more than half the LTC insurance sales, points out James Glickman, president of LifeCare Assurance Company, Woodland Hills, Calif. “And, the average age at purchase will probably drop to the low 50s by 5 years from now.”
These individuals are receptive to LTC discussions because many now are beyond the stage of putting children through college, Glickman says. “They are also starting to see their parents need LTC. And their financial planners are starting to get into their face, saying youve got to start dealing with this.”
In addition, pre-retirees receive so many mailings about LTC and they see so many articles about it that many are much more aware than in previous eras, says Murray, who represents MassMutual. This is just “snowballing,” he says.
To reach these buyers, however, “youve got to go to the market. Go right to the niche,” he says.
For example, Murray uses “radio marketing.” A former radio sportscaster, he started running LTC ads on radio talk shows that target the 45-65 market a few years ago.
These ads did well immediately, he recalls. They started drawing 30 or so people to Murrays LTC dinner-seminars, he says, and his client base grew from there.
Then, when the federal LTC insurance program launched, he went “full bore,” running radio ads on LTC all week long. The result? “Over 300 people showed up at the next seminar,” Murray says.
More recently, he has been hosting his own Sunday morning radio show on LTC insurance. The same thing happened. “We got 20 calls about our seminars in the very first show,” Murray says.
Like Murray, L. Nicholas Hogan, president of Insurance Advisors Inc., in Gahanna, Ohio, near Columbus, offers frequent seminars.
In Hogans case, the seminars are for local associations, Kiwanis groups, Chambers of Commerce, and similar community-based organizations. Many members of these groups are in the 55-62 age range, he explains.
“This is an incredible market,” he adds, noting his firms average purchase age is 57. Many of these buyers are starting to take care of their parents, Hogan says. “They see the need, and they want to learn more about LTC.”
Also, many have money they want to protect, and they have enough money to pay for LTC insurance, he says.