AIG American General creates network to help independent advisors reach this market
A perennial challenge of independent advisors–garnering the benefits of a large organization while maintaining independence–is frequently a delicate balancing act. Through the creation of its Independent Advisors Network, Houston-based AIG American General believes it has achieved a balance producers will find hard to pass up.
“What we’ve done with IAN is to build value around advisors by connecting them to a network that extends beyond their capabilities and helps them grow,” says Richard Miller, president and CEO of AIG American General’s Independent Advisor Network. “That is, philosophically and strategically, where we want to take this organization.”
Launched in March 2003, IAN targets the so-called “mass affluent” market: individuals and small business owners with between $100,000 and $1 million to invest. Their numbers are large–and rising.
According to a 2000 Survey on Consumer Finances by the Council on Financial Competition, the mass affluent market generates more than $95 billion in revenue for advisors.
To secure a share of this market pie, IAN has recruited more than 125 general agents and 500-plus personal producing agents, exceeding AIG objectives for 2004. The company also surpassed its targeted goals of $12.5 million and $40 million, respectively, in annualized and total premium. Miller adds that IAN contributed to a 30% increase in business, or an additional 4,500 life insurance applications, for AIG American General.
In attaining these objectives, AIG American General credits in part the high caliber of producers recruited. IAN counts among its field force many who meet Million Dollar Round Table production levels.
Miller also cites the resources and tools available to the network’s producers: study groups and seminars; strategic planning techniques; online sales tools; plus a relationship with The Strategic Coach, an entrepreneurial-coaching organization headed by Dan Sullivan. IAN also has a similar partnership with Louis Cassara, a sales coach and CEO of the Cassara Clinic.
Advisors also enjoy sales leads generated through IAN-affiliated telemarketing firms, direct mail advertising tools, and access to case design experts who can advise on planning techniques. To offset the cost of these services, producers can apply credits they earn meeting production targets.