Improving customer relationships is a critical activity of most business owners. This is according to “The Pulse of American Business,” an annual survey commissioned by the City Business Journals Network. The network is an arm of American City Business Journals, the nation’s largest publisher of metropolitan business newspapers.
For the life insurance representative, this information confirms the obvious. After all, as entrepreneurial spirits themselves, they already know the importance of strong, long-lasting client relations.
And when it comes to this subject of relationships, all good business owners and entrepreneurs are alike: they want to know the hot buttons of their customers. Why? Because when a customer, client–or anyone for that matter–perceives your empathy for his or her concerns, you’re on the road to a stronger relationship.
But reps who are trying to build their own book of business with business owners have a particular challenge. After all, there are literally thousands of matters that keep the typical business owner up at night. Where to begin a relevant discussion?
Again, the research from “The Pulse of American Business” provides some insight. In a ranking of those issues about which America’s business owners are very concerned, there are 3 hot buttons among the Top 10 that, for me, help to crystallize the discussion topics for the rep. They are:
? Being able to find and keep good employees.
? The safety and security of the business.
? Having enough money to retire.
These 3 issues are inextricably linked to the business owner’s personal goals; the sooner a rep helps a client grasp this fact the better.
That is, by tending to these matters, the owner will be cultivating the success of his or her business. Business success then makes possible the realization of important personal goals–from purchasing a home and funding educations to having enough money to retire on.
It’s a simple equation. But it’s one that often gets lost because of the thousands of other matters on the business owner’s mind. The insurance rep provides the focus.
Let’s take a look at how you might organize a discussion of these 3 topics and the questions to ask:
Finding and keeping good employees
According to “The Pulse of American Business,” 2 in 3 business owners are very concerned about finding good employees-and keeping them. You can help your client’s company stand out among the rest with a discussion about how to create an ideal benefits package. Two important questions are:
o Are you taking good care of your employees?
o Are you rewarding your key employees?
Regarding the first question, those things that attract and retain employees include:
o Health, dental, vision, group term life insurance.
o Short- and long-term disability income insurance.
o Long-term care insurance.
oQualified retirement plans like 401(k) and SIMPLE IRA plans.