Avoiding Sales Voice: How to Remain Authentic in Insurance Sales

How to be authentic when selling

There are many reasons why a salesperson doesn’t always close the deal. They may lack the right portfolio. They may use the wrong approach. They may be unable to establish a connection with the buyer. They may be too self-centered. A study cited by Harvard Business Review in 2017 found that 44% of people believed that salespeople are only serving their own agenda. They were viewed as not really focused on their customers’ needs, but rather only on making a sale.

Trust is something customers want – and expect – from those with whom they do business. Research by Gartner found 83% of consumers won’t do business with brands they don’t trust. Trust is the bedrock for healthy relationships. It is essential to effective communications. When we are able to develop trust and an emotional connection with someone, that can lead to increased understanding, greater transparency, and higher loyalty. For many, trust is the second-most-important factor when buying from a new brand. (The first, of course, is price.)

A potential problem for insurance salespeople is that our industry is among the least respected fields. It is viewed as the sixth most untrustworthy profession in the world. According to Insider Monkey, 38% of people rank insurance salespeople low for both honesty and ethics. Only politicians, car salespeople, journalists, advertising practitioners, and stockbrokers ranked lower.

Developing Your Authentic Voice

Being authentic is essential for sales success. The most successful professionals – whether you’re selling insurance, cars, or something else – know that being genuine and honest is a more effective approach to establish and nurture a long-term relationship. While it’s often said that “It starts with a sale,” you need to focus on establishing a connection that will last – not just on one single sale. You want to earn a reputation of listening, providing value, and solving problems for your customers.

You also don’t want your sales approach to be so standardized that it seems less personal and less authentic.

Here are three tips to help you develop authenticity in sales:

  • Understand your portfolio. Know the products and features of the carriers you represent. It can also be helpful if you know something about your competition, their portfolio, and the broader marketplace. That thorough awareness will help you propose a better solution that is more likely to address your customers’ goals and resolve their pain points.
  • Be genuine and honest. If you’re transparent about yourself and the solutions you propose, you will likely build a trusting, long-lasting relationship that will help you earn renewals and referrals for years to come. Focus on your suggested solution’s strengths but also acknowledge any gaps or weaknesses. Few solutions will solve every customer’s needs fully, but most customers are likely to appreciate your candor about any shortcomings.
  • Share real stories. In your conversations, on your website, in your blog, in social media, and elsewhere, focus on stories that involve real customers and how you’ve helped them. Provide your prospects and customers with tips and information about the changing regulations facing businesses and how you (through your connection with Word & Brown) can provide them with value-adds they might have to pay for elsewhere.

Authenticity sells. It can help you build stronger, more genuine connections with your prospects and customers. It will help you stand out from many of your competitors, because you’ll seem less like a salesperson and more like someone who care and wants to help. Try it and see for yourself how it can lead to increased sales, renewals, and referrals.

How Much Can You Earn as an Insurance Broker?

Find out what you can be earning as an insurance agent in our handy, up-to-date salary guide. Produced by our in-house experts, this resource is bound to help you in advancing your career.

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