The greatest challenge for insurance brokers selling voluntary insurance benefits is in establishing the need for the coverage, first with employers and then with the employees who will actually buy the benefits.
You create a need not by citing a long list of statistics but rather by emphasizing the benefits of the different coverages you provide. For example, with cancer insurance, you’re offering the ability to offset unanticipated costs incurred as a result of the disease. With disability insurance, you’re offering the opportunity to replace income lost when the employee is unable to work and to preserve his or her lifestyle. With life insurance, it’s the protection of a family’s financial future. And dental insurance is more than a way to offset the cost of various procedures. It’s increasingly clear that dental coverage can help improve general health as well, as evidence grows of a connection between oral health and overall physical health.
The key to achieving employers’ support lies in showing them how the coverages you sell can benefit their company as well as their employees. When employers aren’t on board, employees generally don’t show much interest.
Be sure to assure employers that adding voluntary coverages won’t result in administrative hassles for them. To offer this assurance, understand the strengths and weaknesses of the insurance carriers whose products you sell so that you are able to promote their strengths and help your clients avoid the weaknesses. Working closely with sales representatives at each carrier can provide you with valuable insights.
Conversations with the decision maker will help you determine which voluntary products can best meet the organization’s needs. Once you’ve demonstrated how your products can fill benefits gaps, work on implementing a voluntary benefit enrollment campaign that will lead to high plan participation.
An effective voluntary enrollment campaign should start by raising employee awareness of the benefits offered as well as their attention to the upcoming enrollment. Specific tactics may include:
o Promotion of the voluntary products being offered through employer mailings to employees’ home addresses, e-mail messages in the workplace, and mentions in company newsletters and intranet sites as well as payroll stuffers.
o Prominent display of posters about the offerings in the workplace.