Most agents would agree that getting the appointment is the hardest part of making a sale, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t ways to improve the likelihood of getting business out of every client meeting.
Talk to clients in advance so they can have their information ready – You can’t always assume that a client is going to have all the necessary information immediately at hand. By talking to them in advance about what you’ll need to know, you give them a chance to track down necessary papers or make phone calls to get everything prepared. Items to remind clients of in advance include Medicare ID and Part A and B effective dates, names and contact info of their doctors, existing policy info including premium draft date, disenrollment or cancellation letters, and proof of prior coverage.
Do some fact finding to narrow down the options you’ll present – Especially in areas with a large number of Medicare Advantage plans available or clients looking for a Guaranteed Issue Medicare Supplement, it’s overwhelming to a client to present them every option. Talk to the client briefly about what their priorities are and who their doctors are to find out whether there are plans that stand out as particularly good or bad fits. There’s no need to present a plan that doesn’t include benefits that a client is especially concerned with or that their doctor doesn’t accept.
Be compliant – There’s no need to risk getting a sales allegation because of easily avoidable mistakes. Make sure that you have a scope of appointment filled out and signed as far in advance as possible. CMS requests 48 hours but doesn’t specifically require it in cases where it’s not possible. Also make sure that you have all the required materials to leave with clients including full enrollment kits, provider directories, the Choosing a Medigap Policy booklet, and anything else required by specific carriers or individual states.
Know what basics you’ll need to cover, and in how much depth – Different clients will need different amounts of explanation about the basics of Medicare and how the plans they’re considering work. Are they totally new to Medicare? Are they just looking to change between like plan types? Are they switching between Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement plans? Each scenario means a different amount of background information that the client will require.
Doing a bit of extra work preparing to meet with clients will not only help you get the sale, it will make you look more professional and give your clients a better experience, bringing you more referrals and better persistency.