Is it Time to Add PAR to Your Practice?

It amazes me how many years go by before the average client gets an annual review.  Sometimes, it’s many years, and that’s not good for anyone. Policy Analysis and Review (PAR) is perhaps the #1 tool that top advisors use to provide a valuable resource for their clients.

While you may think that clients don’t want to see you for a full review every year, you may be wrong.  They at least need the option to say no. And, with the ISN PAR program, a review can be done easily over the phone after emailing the client a detailed insurance portfolio review. This can be looked at together over any geographical distance and within almost anyone’s limited schedules. They want to know that you are on the job and available to help, so make that effort.

This is a big part of building loyalty and trust.  It is also a big part of making financial planning practical; every plan needs adjustment regardless of the talent of the planner.  The only way to make those adjustments practical and valuable is to do a review regularly and according to life needs. Coverage could go up – but it could also need to go down. Both options will improve your persistency and build rapport.

To keep this short, there are three necessary goals in an annual review:

  1. First, you must review the changes in the life of your client and the people around them.  What has happened that might make a plan change necessary?  To make sure you don’t miss any of these questions, check the Annual Review Questionnaire available from ISN.
  2. Second, advise the client of the changes that have happened in the industry in the past year that may cause them to make some changes to their plan.  That might mean that interest rates have changed which require adjustments to UL assumptions, or pricing reductions which make early term renewal more valuable than waiting. Most important is the fact that mortality tables have changed. People are living longer and this means costs are coming down.
  3. Finally, review their existing insurance portfolio.  Discover if there are any benefits they are missing.  Are their options they are not exercising?  What about LTC riders? What about child riders? Term switch options? Early term renewal or conversion? Underfunding of UL? Dividend option switches? Remember, products evolve over time – and in our industry the changes can be dramatic.

To be most effective, make this meeting more formal.  Inject importance to their ongoing plan and use an agenda to stay on track.  It’s that last key to making your clients’ financial plans more practical. You can also use our handy “STAMP TOOL” to make it a part of your process.

When you make financial planning practical you have become essential to your clients.  You are relevant to their ongoing lives and become someone they need.  This is a potent combination for them and for you. Plus, relevance in their lives produces referability, which drives your business.  It’s time to make financial planning practical.

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Under Attack? Fall Back

There is a popular saying “the customer is always right” – in fact some very successful corporations base their whole business model around that concept. But those of us in the financial arena who deal with clients everyday know that the idea that the client is always right  is not necessarily true. In fact, it is often not true. Our clients come to us because they are not sure of what to do in this very complicated financial world that we live in. But, while the client is not always right, he is definitely the judge and the jury. This we must be aware of in all of our dealings. So how do we respond when we are under attack – being questioned about something we absolutely know is wrong?

Another popular saying is that “a good offense is the best defense.” But in the financial arena, again this may not be the best approach. If you take a so-called “good offense” and attempt to justify and explain your position you will likely cause your client to dig in his heels. A “good offense” will only make your client feel “not OK.” Why not try a different approach? When under attack- fall back.

How does that look? What does falling back sound like? Suppose your client challenges your idea that an annuity is a good solution for their concern of “outliving their income in retirement.” Now we know that is not correct but again- to go on the offense might force your client to dig in their heels. But, using questions- we can successfully “fall back” and give our clients the opportunity to change their mind. Here is what that might sound like:

“I imagine you have made up your mind already that a guaranteed lifetime income is not for you and that you do not want to go forward. Would that be a fair statement?

“If you were in my shoes what would you do to make this work for you?”

“Is it me, or is something bothering you about this concept?”

“Falling back” takes the wind out of the customer’s sails and makes it possible for you to have a conversation in which each side is OK. Once the emotional intensity is reduced, and nobody is under attack, you have a better chance of working towards a solution.

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Is It Time to Merge?

Now Might be a Good Time to Merge your Agency with Another

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Is There A Loan On Your Life Policy?

1035 Exchanges of Life Insurance Policies with Outstanding Debt

We have been assisting our brokers and their clients with loan rescues for over 30 years.
If you are interested give us a call.
We can step you through the entire process.
Starting with the reason why your clients policy is at risk.
Then we obtain an in force illustration.
Once we both determine the policy is at risk, we will then develop a series of rescue options for your client.
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How to Win an Argument

Arguments have played a vital role in shaping societies. In fact, we could have never progressed without challenging dominant viewpoints and changing the way others see the world.

Argumentation is an art, but it is one that requires a great deal of time to master. After all, having the ability to persuade and influence people is never an innate skill. It never will be. It takes time for one to polish his rhetorical skills and be able to argue with people on a wide variety of issues. `

All you have to do is to have patience and make use of the most important tips to convince even the staunchest debaters.

Know your purpose

The first thing you will need to do is to figure out why you are having an argument in the first place. This would help you to create rebuttals that will certainly win over opponents to your fold. What’s more, knowing the reason why you want to keep on arguing should also help you in terms of formulating your rhetorical strategy. You also need to ask yourself if the argument is worth or if so much is at stake.

Size up the other person

Do not just focus on what you want to achieve. Besides, this could pass as the easiest tip to learn in the area of debate. But to further enhance the appeal of your propositions, you will have to assess your opponent first. This would mean keeping tabs on their habits as well as examining their choice of words. You should also anticipate what they are going to say next by throwing key phrases or words that can lower their defenses.

Come prepared

While you can’t always expect to engage someone in an argument no matter how trivial or academic it could be, it is still crucial to flex your debate skills and do research on possible topics you will be arguing over. Any well-meaning law frim know better than to come to court unprepared since doing so would put their reputation on difficult ground. With that being said, it pays to read about new things each day and apply what you know to the real world.

Show confidence

The way you project yourself to your opponent can greatly impact the way you structure your arguments. Confidence is always an important component of success, and to deliver a penetrating counter-statement requires being able to convince yourself that yes, you can influence people by the power of your words. To do so, you will need to appear authoritative if you want your voice to have power over your audience.

Address each point one by one

Engaging in a debate might seem like the easiest thing to do. It is not. In such a game where logic rules supreme, it is crucial to possess a sharp mind or have the ability to sort one’s thoughts into consumable bits. It is another thing to examine another person’s statements and determine logical flaws. In that case, it is actually a bad idea to address an issue on the whole. The better way is to observe certain statements, slicing them up into segments and identifying loopholes where you can wriggle your way through.

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Get On the Index UL Train

Indexed life sales up 6.1% in 2017

Total 2017 sales of indexed life insurance came in at $1.9 billion, an increase of 6.1% as compared to 2016, according to the Wink’s Sales & Market Report, released on March 14.

“Another record-setting year for indexed life sales is on the books!” said Sheryl J. Moore, President and CEO of both Moore Market Intelligence and Wink, Inc., based in Des Moines. “Five of the top 10 manufacturers had double-digit sales increases; this is absolutely a product line with growth potential!”

Indexed life sales in the fourth quarter of 2017 totaled $575.2 million; up 20.3% when compared with the prior quarter, and up 7.6% as compared to the same period last year.

Items of interest in the indexed life market included Pacific Life Companies retaining the No. 1 ranking in indexed life sales, with an 18.5% market share. National Life Group, Transamerica, and Minnesota Life-Securian round out the top four sellers, respectively.

Pacific Life’s Pacific Discovery Xelerator IUL was the top-selling indexed life insurance product, for all channels combined, for the quarter. The top pricing objective for sales this quarter was Cash Accumulation, capturing 79.7% of sales. The average indexed life target premium reported for the quarter was $9,073, an increase of more than 5.0% from the prior quarter.


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High Impact Appointments

Last year we were lucky enough to host a conference featuring Joe Ross from AIG and the Sequoia Program called “High Impact Appointments” All who attended walked away with some great ideas on how to get more out of each appointment. Here is one of the better ideas for you to consider:

Define Your High Impact Appointments

The typical financial professional conducts dozens, if not hundreds of meetings every year. While we like to think that each contact is a unique experience, the far more likely scenario is that dozens of meetings are generally made up of perhaps 4-6 different types of meetings done multiple times each year. Furthermore, while it is nice to believe that each of our meetings has equal impact, the reality is that only a handful, perhaps 2 or 3 of our meetings actually produce the greatest impact on future business with clients. The ability to repeat those relatively few high impact appointments has an enormous impact on our overall success.

So which appointments produce the highest impact? That is for you to decide. No two times are the same and there are differences for each of us. For this reason it is good to define and identify what are the 3 or 4 highest impact appointments in your arsenal. Once defined you need to focus on a few key elements. Break it down so you can duplicate success over and over again.


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