We consulted with top advisor Marty Guzman, CSA, president of Arizona Estate Planners, Inc., for his take on useful steps to get prospects to feel comfortable enough to sign on the dotted line.

1. Be well-informed prior to making any recommendations. Guzman says, “Prior to doing any fact finding, I use an insurance agent disclosure form. The form helps me outline my relationship with the prospect and identifies exactly how I fit into their financial world. This defines how we are going to proceed.” Guzman says this easily leads to the next step, which is collecting the information needed to make any suitable recommendations.
2. Master your products. Guzman says, “When you deliver a policy, you are handing your customer a stack of paper. That’s not really what they bought from you. They purchased the ideas and concepts put forward by the words on those papers that help them accomplish their goals and dreams. If you are working in this industry, you must be equipped with every feature of every product you work with.”
3. Be confident. Confidence comes from knowing what is important in your field, Guzman says. “Product mastery leads you on a path of confidence. Prepare before you ever meet the prospect. Have you ever left a meeting thinking, ‘Oh, I should have said this or suggested that?’ Keep honing your skills. Make note of what you wish you had done or said so that when that situation arises again, you will be ready for it.”
4. Make your recommendations simple and understandable. Guzman reminds us of an old saying in sales: “Don’t try to tell them how the watch works. Just tell them that it keeps impeccable time.” He says, “This doesn’t mean you fail to disclose. Proper disclosure is not only the law; it is the right thing to do. You must perfect your disclosure so product complexities can become understandable for someone hearing them for the first time.”
5. Choose to give your prospect ownership of your recommendation. Guzman’s final step helps lead to a recommendation, rather than you attempting to “close” someone. “Using carefully-structured words, you can choose to create the idea of ownership in your customer’s mind. For example, when speaking about a planning approach using an annuity, say, ‘You need to think about the safety of your resources. Is the money going to be there when you need it? What are your income needs in the future and what can you do to guarantee it will all happen according to your desires? By implementing this strategy we have designed together, you can have that assurance of protection and a future lifetime of income.’”

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