COVID-19 Pandemic Drives Surge in Life Insurance Virtual Sales Meetings

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Ensight, a leading life and annuity digital sales platform, today released the latest findings from its quarterly Trends Report which highlights a dramatic shift in life insurance interest due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As shelter-in-place orders forced life insurance agents to work from home, remote selling utilization increased by 155% in just eight weeks. Social distancing restrictions were among the biggest drivers of a transformation towards digital life insurance sales in more than 20 years.

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During April’s nationwide shutdown, the Ensight Platform created over 31,000 digital illustrations for remote sales engagements by agencies, producers, and financial advisors. The insurtech company also reported a dramatic increase in the number of agency users of its interactive virtual sales platform – from 84 to 215 between January and May of 2020.

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“Life insurance has always been a relationship-based business. It’s about connecting with clients and understanding their personal financial protection objectives, and the need for controlled risk that insurance products can offer amidst market volatility. The COVID-19 pandemic has not only re-catalyzed awareness of the need for financial protection, but also ignited a shift to digital client engagement, such as remote discussions over virtual meeting platforms,” said John “Hutch” Hutchinson, Founder of BankingTruths.com. “For years we’ve been working to train our clients to meet virtually, but over the past eight weeks, we’ve found the world is now leaning into a virtual way of doing business. The life insurance sector has realized that a virtual discussion is so much more flexible for the client, but also more productive for our business model. Ensight’s interactive presentations have been instrumental in elevating our virtual professionalism, and the interactive visual experience transforms mundane granular product data into a more tangible digital presentation that a client can understand and act upon.”

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The company, whose interactive virtual sales platform supports life insurance quoting with an easy-to-use, intuitive platform notes guaranteed universal life insurance (GUL) protection-oriented quoting maintained strong activity of nearly 39% in April 2020. In contrast, indexed universal life insurance (IUL) grew from 30% earlier in the year to an average 35% in six weeks. The company’s life agency base supports tens of thousands of life agents, producers, financial advisors and financial services firms with digital interactive presentations for remote sales.

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“The response to the coronavirus has created a broadscale shift to a virtual sales model and is reinvigorating the traditional way life insurance agents conduct business,” says CEO Bill Unrue. “These changes were already taking form as the growth of the gig economy, remote working, and virtual financial advice increased; what we’re seeing now is how the pandemic has accelerated the industry’s digital transformation.”

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To learn more about Ensight at https://www.ensightcloud.com/.

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About Ensight™

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Ensight™ is the leading cloud-based insurance sales acceleration platform for more than 500 Life and Annuity distributors, thousands of financial professionals, as well as many of the largest North American insurance carriers. Headquartered in San Diego, California, Ensight helps drive sales growth and productivity, while addressing the entire sales lifecycle experience – from prospect to policyholder, new business to inforce.

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Read Press Release at: CISION PrWeb

LBTC Announces New Co-Chairs

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We are excited to Announce that The Life Brokerage Technology Committee (LBTC) has elected 3 New Co-Chairs (See complete bios at end of post). The new leadership team brings a vast amount of industry experience to drive LBTC forward in working with its members in solving industry technology pain points and creating process improvement for Life Insurance services. The LBTC new co-chairs will also bring awareness of new innovations to the industry.

 

12345* Pat Wedeking, Vice President of Tellus Brokerage Connections

12345* Marjorie Ma, VP & Head of Product Management of AIG USA Life Insurance

12345* Brian Kirland, Senior Director Sales & Marketing of SuranceBay

 

 

The new co-chairs each represent respectively Distributors, Carriers and Vendors. They will serve a 2-year term. The new co-chairs are supported by the LBTC Steering Committee: Joann Mattson of Highland Capital Brokerage, Jeff Lingenfelter of John Hancock Insurance Company, and Ken Leibow of InsurTech Express. LBTC has 120+ industry members. Please see below on how to join LBTC.

 

The Life Brokerage Technology Committee (LBTC) is an independent working group whose purpose is to exchange information about technology related systems and services related to the marketing, sale, and servicing of insurance in independent distribution channels. Some of LBTC’s past initiatives focused on process improvement and solving technology pain points: Automated-Underwriting, eApp, eDelivery, eSignature, Commission Accounting, and Pending Case Status to name a few. LBTC conducts industry surveys, whitepapers, webinars, media and has a face-to-face meeting at the Annual NAILBA Conference in November. LBTC partners with other industry associations such as NAILBA, ACORD and LIDMA.

 

JOIN LBTC

There is no cost to becoming an LBTC Member. Each person who wants to participate in LBTC in your organization can join. Each person will need to fill out a membership form.  You can join LBTC by downloading the membership form and emailing it to Joann Mattson at jmattson@highland.com. Download LBTC Membership Form: https://lnkd.in/eHhHjfZ

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Pat Wedeking

Pat Wedeking is an industry veteran whose focus has been on process improvement, direct marketing and brokerage business development. Coming from the hospitality business as a PGA apprentice, Pat entered the life insurance business through Northwestern Mutual’s training program.  After 10 years in personal production Pat entered the general agency business with a technology driven brokerage focusing on lead generation a lead relationship management (LRM) system.  This platform served as the foundation of Quick Life which was sold to Crump in 2016.

 

During the growth of the brokerage Pat was the founding President of the Life Insurance Direct Marketing Association known throughout the industry as LIDMA.  This organization focuses on industry technology that improves the process of obtaining insurance and helped usher in the ubiquitous use of electronic payments, signatures and delivery of policies.  Further process improvement initiatives focus on voice signature, data based underwriting and bringing data closer to the point of sale.  After service to LIDMA Pat was elected to the Life Happens board of directors and served as Chairman of that organization in 2017. Since joining Crump Pat has been in business development positions focusing on the use of their transaction center platform and, most recently, with Crump’s IMO division, Tellus Brokerage Connections.  Pat brings energy and a big picture mentality to his endeavors.  He has a wealth of knowledge and industry relationships that will help any organization he serves.

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Marjorie Ma

Marjorie Ma is the Vice President and Head of Product Management and Market Intelligence, AIG USA Life Insurance. She has over 8 years life insurance experience and is now responsible for Life Insurance Product Development and Management at AIG, including product strategy development and implementation, as well as day-to-day product management across AIG’s broad life product portfolio. She is also leading Market Intelligence Team to collect industry and competitor updates and to provide actionable intelligence to product, pricing, sales, marketing and operation teams.  Marjorie joined AIG in 2012 after obtaining her MBA degree from Rice University and has since worked in the Life Insurance Industry.

 

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Brian Kirland

Brian J. Kirland received his Economics degree from Saint Mary’s College of California in 1997. He began his career in the financial industry as a Portfolio Manager’s Assistant at NWQ Investment Management. From 1998 until 2014, Brian was a part of a growing technology firm, Xtiva Financial Systems, whose products focused on the Broker-Dealer and Securities industry for Sales compensation. Brian then joined LaserApp Software in 2014, deepening his insurance technology expertise. During his two years with LaserApp, Brian spent his time meeting agency principals and carrier partners helping establish a new business platform for the firm.

 

Brian joined SuranceBay as a National Account Executive in July of 2016 and currently serves as Senior Director of Sales & Marketing and a member of the executive management team. Brian works to increase sales within the distribution channels, carrier partners and vendor integrations for SuranceBay’s flagship product, SureLC™. Since 2009, SuranceBay has been an industry leader in providing innovative licensing and contracting software to independent brokers, agents, and carriers. The recent introduction of complementary tools such as DataLink, SureLC One, Background Screening, and AML training, makes SuranceBay’s SaaS platform a one-stop-shop for over 85% of the independent life insurance agents in the United States. SuranceBay incorporates the assets of more than 600 life insurance carriers with subscriptions from over 800 BGAs, optimizing the workflows of 425,000+ active producers nationwide, and processing over 50,000 monthly contract submissions.

 

The Battle For The Dashboard

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November 2019

By: Steve Morelli 

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Ask Doug Massey why it has been so difficult to create seamless and effective insurance technology and he will take you on an Uber ride from hell — metaphorically speaking, of course

 

Massey knows all about the ride because his career has followed the route of insurance tech itself in the early 1990s, when he started a property and casualty quote engine company as a college student. Later, he worked with leading insurance tech companies such as Ebix.

 

Massey is now the executive vice president for sales and relationship management with Insurance Technologies, which, as the name implies, is a key player in insurance tech. And he said the company is finally closing in on a eureka moment when it all comes together into a seamless insurance tech nirvana.

 

But we are in an age when we can get dinner delivered by drone with a click of the thumb, so why is the life insurance and annuity industry’s tech seemingly stuck?

 

Ah, step inside Massey’s exasperating Uber for an explanation.

 

“Let’s assume I’m using my Uber app and I want to do a ride, but it’s the way insurance works,” Massey began. “I’ve got to open up my Google Maps or my Apple Maps. So, I’ve got to find my location. I have to set a pin for my location. Then I say, ‘OK, well I’ve set my pin for my location. Now I want to share that over to this Uber app.’”

HOW OUR ROBOTS RAN 30 MILLION ILLUSTRATIONS IN 24 HOURS

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BY BILL ATLEE, JUNE 4TH, 2019

Last year, our industry ran 400 million illustrations for permanent life insurance, 95% of which ended up in the trash can. Agents and their back-office staff wasted thousands of man-hours a week generating 10-20-page PDFs that are seen by a client. Why the insanity? It’s not because the insurance commissioner tells us that we have to do it this way. It’s because of the way insurance agents sell.

When agents meet a prospect for the first time, they typically don’t know the details of the prospect’s insurance needs, medical background, or price tolerance. Consequently, they pre-run multiple illustration scenarios to provide prospects with various options.

They do this in advance to avoid the clumsy nature of running carrier illustration software in front of a prospect. This madness will seemingly never go away as long as clients want options, illustrations software remains complex, and agents desire a smoother selling experience.

What if an agent could go out in the field with no paper illustrations, avoid dozens of confusing PDFs, and clunky illustration software, yet still react quickly to client curve balls…

How? iSolve.

iSolve teaches robots how to pre-run millions of illustration scenarios each month and stores these calculations in a massive online database. iSolve then wraps an intuitive user-friendly interface around these pre-run calculations, allowing an agent to use their smartphone, tablet, or laptop to instantly display various product options.

When the agent has met the client’s product and pricing expectations, the agent simply clicks a button and an NAIC-compliant illustration is rendered for all parties to e-Sign. iSolve also integrates directly into iGO e-App, making it simple for the agent to digitally apply for coverage.

As a life insurance agent that founded iPipeline over 20 years ago, I know what it’s like to be in the field with clients, and how much of an obstacle illustrations scenarios are to rapidly moving sales. Alongside my colleagues, we have developed this new illustrations innovation, iSolve, to provide digital access to infinite illustrations for a possible sales scenario. No more “wouldn’t it be nice if…” Just 30 million pre-run illustrations right at your fingertips.

Did I peak your interest?  Explore the power of iSolve in my on-demand webinar.