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Getting Started In Medicare Sales
   

⍟  How To Get Started In Medicare Supplement Sales  ⍟

 

There is a lot of opportunity to start making money selling Medicare Supplements.

 

With 10,000 Baby Boomers turning 65 every day for at least another decade, it’s apparent that the Medicare market will continue its tremendous growth for the foreseeable future. 

 

By 2030, 18% of the US population will be at least age 65 according to Pew Research.

 

Over_65_population_chart

This avalanche of seniors into Medicare has created a groundswell opportunity, and many agents are capitalizing on it.

 

 

" Medicare supplement sales offer a great first year commission and annual residuals, creating a huge income potential by providing ongoing compensation for years after the sale. "

 

 

Whether you’re a seasoned agent looking to start selling Medicare supplements, or a Greenhorn looking to get started, the Medicare market is proven for growth and open to insurance professionals of all backgrounds.

 

If you are brand new to the Medicare Market, then take a look at this power point to familiarize yourself with the different parts of Medicare and coverage options. Getting Started With Medicare

 

What follows are some of the most common questions we receive from agents who are just getting started in the Medicare market.

What Kind Of License

What Kind of License Do I Need?

As with any insurance product you must have the proper license per your state’s Department of Insurance requirements. In most cases you only need a health insurance license, although in North Carolina for example, there is a specific license to sell Medicare products.

 

It’s best to check with your state Department of Insurance for licensing requirements specific to your state to make sure. 

 

You can visit the National Insurance Producer Registry at www.nipr.com for help with proper licensing requirements as well as electronic filing of needed documents.

Do I Need Training

Do I need additional training and where do I get it?

Outside of any training needed to complete state licensing requirements, you will also be required to complete training and certifications to offer certain Medicare product options, namely Medicare Advantage Plans and Prescription Drug Plans. 

 

Proper certification for these product options will generally include AHIP training, as well as carrier specific training with each individual company and product you plan to sell.  Medicare supplement products however, do not require any additional certifications beyond your state’s licensing requirements. 

 

You can complete AHIP training directly through AHIP or through a Medicare Advantage or Part D carrier. At PSM we offer our agents a discount for AHIP training. Do some research to find out what discounts might be available before purchasing your training.

 

While the training modules you’ll work through to complete Medicare Advantage and PDP certifications will be provided by the carriers, CMS publishes two annual resources that make valuable self-study resources: Medicare and You, and the Choosing a Medigap Policy Guide.

 

 

Additionally, CMS has an excellent online training library that you can use to dive deeper into specific topics of Medicare and even have fun with mock tests.

What Sales Process?

 What is My Sales Process Going to Be?

Do you plan to visit your customers face-to-face?  Or do you prefer the ease of conducting your business electronically and over the phone? 

 

Both are viable options, especially now that the vast majority of competitive and reputable insurance companies have adopted an e-application process for agent use. 

 

We recommend you use a relationship selling method when marketing to seniors. It is critical to learn about the demographic you're selling to and offer the best service and product that honestly addresses their needs.

 

Seniors have seen advertising and sales tactics evolve over many years and are quick to see through them. A sales technique not based on an honest desire to help will raise immediate flags in their minds. 

  

What Products Will I Need?

 What Products Will I Need?

As an independent agent serving the Medicare market you’ll have numerous product options to pick from including a broad range of Medicare supplement companies, Medicare Advantage products and Prescription Drug Plans, but in the end your portfolio will be dictated by your territory and to some extent, your sales model.

 

To suit your territory best you’ll need a product that is available, competitive, and serves your customers’ preferences and best interests. 

 

If you have questions about what products may be available to you, speak to one of our seasoned marketers to find out what products are performing well in your area.

Where Do I Get My Products?

 Where Do I Get My Products? Should I Use an FMO?

For each product you plan to sell you’ll need to acquire an appointment with that insurance carrier by completing an independent agent agreement or contract. 

 

There are a very limited number of insurance companies that will offer you a direct contract without being a captive or employed agent, so most of your independent agent contracts for various insurance companies will be acquired through a Medicare Insurance FMO.

 

There are many benefits to working with an FMO. A good FMO will work consistently to get the best contracts with top companies, and offer them to agents and agencies of all sizes. They should be a pillar of support, helping you maximize your efforts, and allow you to focus on supercharging your business.

 

It's important to do your research and ask the right questions when looking for an FMO. We recommend you review several companies to ensure you get the partner that can help you succeed and exceed your goals.

 

[ Recommended: What are the Benefits of Using an FMO ]

What About Leads?

 What About Medicare Leads? How Do I Find Eligible Prospects?

Leads are normally created from receiving input from people actively expressing interest in getting information about Medicare product options and costs. Companies that specialize in lead generation have put forth a lot of effort to collect the contact information they offer for sale.

 

Some Lead Services will have better coverage (and volume) for certain lines of insurance and geographic territories. However, not being able to meet all your needs isn’t necessarily a deal breaker. More important is to consider consistency and dependability.

 

The “secret to success” when working with insurance leads starts with the understanding that it's a numbers game. If the leads you purchase are quality leads and your sales process is well polished, then it stands to reason that purchasing insurance leads can be a profitable venture.

 

We recommend testing a lead service first to determine what kind of closing ratio you can achieve then factoring the price to see if they meet your return on investment expectations.

 

And as with any business involving sales, referrals should never be overlooked. Referrals can play a big part in your success, and closing ratios are generally much higher than with colder leads.  If you’re not asking every customer for a referral you’re absolutely leaving money on the table.

 

[ Recommended: 14 Ways to Generate Medicare Leads ]

What About Sales Tools?

 How About Sales Tools? Will I need a CRM and Quoting Platform?

There a number of tools available to help an agent be successful in today's competitive landscape. Some of these options will include:

 

1.  eContracting Solutions -  This tool would allow you to complete contracts online, 

     speeding up the appointment process.

 

2.  Medicare Quoting Tool / Online Quoting Engine - A Quoting Engine makes it easier for agents

     to have access to accurate, up-to-date pricing and plan details for the nations top senior     

     market products. A solid quoting platform will allow you to quickly review the entire 

     landscape of product options giving you an expert level of knowledge on the fly.

 

3.  Book of Business Search Features - The Book of Business (BOB) feature allows agents to

     query, search and download their entire client base at any time.

 

As you can see, these tools are making it easier to work through the contracting process with clients without the need for face to face meetings. These tools, among others, should be considered a standard part of your sales toolbox to help accelerate your sales process.

 

Technology can help speed up the process, but at the same time presents a new set of sales challenges since you don't always meet face to face with your customer. Applying these tools and learning how to sell effectively over the phone can be a huge boon to your business.

Benefits And Incentives

 What Are Some Benefits And Incentives To Selling Medicare?

So, how much do agents make selling Medicare plans? That depends on several factors, such as the product type, insurance carrier, etc. Here is a list of just a few of the benefits you may experience when selling Medicare products as an independent agent: 

 

          • Residual Income - When you sell a Medicare supplement or Medicare Advantage plan you will receive residual income from that sale for years to come, creating a passive income from each sale.

 

          • Own Your Business – As an independent agent commissions are paid directly to you and generally vested from day one, so you truly own your book of business and the renewals that come with it.

 

          • Incentive Trips – Many insurance companies will reward their top agents with exotic trips and vacation packages. Have you been to Italy yet?

 

          • Additional Product Sales – Whether it be annuities, life insurance or critical illness policies, Medicare products serve as a great door-opener for agents to develop a relationship with their client that will help assess their needs for additional products and coverage helping you increase client loyalty and your overall profitability.

 

Selling Medicare related products can be a very rewarding and lucrative career that offers the opportunity to own your own business and enjoy passive income for years into the future. If you are looking to partner with an FMO that works with independent agents, give us a call and let us explain what we do to help our agents succeed.

 

Precision Senior Marketing works with top agents around the country. We take pride in providing our agents with high quality senior insurance products that bring a sense of security and peace of mind to the nation's exploding senior population.