The common denominator for success among successful people, no matter what the product or service, is doing the things that failures don’t do. It explains why many of those who appear to have all of the natural talent fail, while others with obvious handicaps succeed. I have learned over the last 35 years of exclusively selling disability income (DI) insurance that I do my best when I stay with the habits I employed when I first started my second career, in insurance. For purposes of this article, I’ll refer to them as techniques, rather than habits, and discuss them as a guide to the producer so they too, can successfully sell disability insurance!
It’s no secret that people don’t want to be “sold” anything. What prospects really want, is rather to be in the position where they are “buying.” Before anyone buys, they need some reasons to justify the purchase. So what does it take to have someone purchase? It takes a variety of “tools,” perhaps more so to sell DI insurance, than any other insurance product, simply due to the fact that disability insurance has more “language” considerations (e.g.; benefits/terms/formulas/definitions/conditions, etc.). On the other hand, life or annuity policies basically are justified or based on absolute values and premium, rather than the “what if” language of DI contracts. So, obviously, one of the necessary selling tools is product knowledge. They say “knowledge is power.” Knowledge doesn’t stop with just knowing your company’s product. You should also be conversant in disability insurance probability statistics and other pertinent information in order to support the sales cycle, and create the need. Some of the carriers provide charts and graphs to support your argument to convince the prospect to say “yes” after their (expected) initial objection.
What good is knowledge, if no one knows learns how “knowledgeable” you are? Therefore, prospecting is a very important part of the sales cycle, in view of the fact that you’re still bound to make some sales with enough exposure, even with a minimum of knowledge.
The basic sales tools one must have in order to be effective are made up of the following components:
3. Prospecting techniques
4. Presentation skills
5. Rebuttal skills
6. Closing skills
I will go in limited detail for just a few of the above:
Knowledge (See chart below for specifics)