Q. I know asking questions to encourage prospects to share personal experiences is an important part of the first LTCI sales appointment. Can you provide some questions that will get the client talking?
A. The structure of the conversation during the first meeting should be a 70/30 arrangement. 70 percent of the time the prospect should be talking and 30 percent of the time the agent should be directing the conversation. To provide examples of key questions to use during the meeting, I turned to Deb Newman, president of Newman Long Term Care, a brokerage agency in Minnesota. Here is what she asks: When first meeting with a client, I ask the question, “How did you become interested in investigating long term care insurance?” What happens is that clients begin to tell you their story.
The second question should be, “Have you looked at other long term care plans?” This information will help you better understand the clients and their preferred combination of benefits.
Third, I’m going to say, “Tell me about your family.’” Information I’m looking for includes: How old are your parents? Do you have brothers and sisters? What do your kids do? You will start to get a sense of how important family is to them. You’re also going to get a sense of whether caregiving might be available from a family member. Are their kids helping them or are your clients helping their parents?
Last, ask, “Has anyone in your family ever needed care?” This often becomes the most important part of the interview. Later, you will go back and review with them: “Remember you told me in your family (such and such…)?” That will help them validate the very reason they are addressing the LTC issue for themselves.