Everything in life goes in cycles. CDs used to be the way we bought music. Leisure suits used to be in style. Mullets were an accepted haircut. There’s a new addition to this ever-growing list of things that used to be cool, but need to be put in the “distant memory” category. That new member to this old-hat club is the annuity “bad chicken dinner seminar.”
This is a sad day when I have to deliver this “seminar eulogy,” because this means that my parents will now have to start buying their breakfast, lunch and dinner outings with their own money. My parents live just south of me in the oldest city in America, St. Augustine, Fla. Seems appropriate that they live in the oldest city in the country, and that area has become a haven and magnet for baby boomers and retirees from across the country.
In this retiree Mecca with the town of Palm Coast just south of St. Augustine and the city of Jacksonville to the north, an enterprising and organized retiree can literally eat 10 to 15 meals a week for free for as long as their appointment book has pages. My mom and dad have literally feasted at hundreds of these annuity food-promo events, and I want to take this opportunity to thank all of the local agents for providing this ongoing nutrition and “PowerPoint education” to my parents over the past few years. Sadly, this private-sector food subsidy has run its course and should be permanently shelved and placed in the annuity history museum.
I know that I’m going to get some random emails and calls from a handful of agents across the country that still swear by the “bad chicken dinner” strategy, but it’s important to point out that there are still people that sport Elvis muttonchops instead of normal sideburns. Time warps do exist! To those few agents still running annuity food kitchens, I wish you Godspeed and happy feeding until the food supply runs dry.
Let’s bury this dated strategy
For the annuity industry as a whole, it’s time to officially bury this dated strategy once and for all. As you have probably guessed by now, I have never held a “food seminar.” The primary reason is that my mom would definitely show up (she would find out about it somehow), and probably complain about the food that was served. I always enjoy when she calls and gives me the rundown on the annuity seminars she has recently attended, and can only remember what kind of food was served and what tasted good or bad. In Florida, the two main topics of conversation with retirees are recent doctor visits and the previous week’s annuity food seminar menus. I’m not joking! Not one time has she been able to explain what annuity strategy was presented, except for a few sizzle bullet points the agent kept repeating yet she has no clue about the actual facts behind them.