Most financial professionals would love the opportunity to work with high-net-worth clients, but as you may have experienced... it can be a challenge to get in front of these individuals and also a feat to actually make it to the end of the sales process.
Selling life insurance can be particularly tricky because of the many aspects outside of your control. For this reason, having specific strategies for closing IUL sales with high-income clients can be important to the success of your practice.
Keep reading because you may benefit from adopting the strategies we outline in this blog post.
Strategy #1: Use this streamlined, convenient underwriting and application process.
Busy executives are often swamped with people who want their time. Once you capture their attention, you need to make it quick. How?
Deliver a fast and simple underwriting and application process. Because the last thing a high-powered executive wants is be bogged down by never-ending paperwork and doctor visits.
So first, for the application, use tech to your advantage.
If you have access to an e-application, it'll make it easier on you AND your client. Many of the fields auto-fill so all the client has to do is make sure they read and understand and then e-sign on the dotted line. All of which can be done from the comfort of their home or office without having to worry about a pile of paperwork that has to be physically mailed.
Not only does technology make the application process smoother, but you can also use it to securely deliver the policy electronically. That way, you no longer have to coordinate a time when the client would be home to deliver the policy. This can greatly improve the client experience, dropping the time to receive the policy from weeks to mere hours, in some cases.
With COVID and the subsequent changes to how we do business, completing important business dealings virtually is something most of us have become accustomed to and is more widely accepted.
However, it’s not just slow application and policy delivery that could stop a life insurance sale from happening…
As you know, one of the most critical aspects of applying for life insurance is underwriting. You, as well as your clients, may associate fully underwritten policies with a long, drawn-out process. And you wouldn’t be wrong!
When you're working with and coordinating the actions of numerous people –– from the client, to yourself, to the carrier, underwriter, and doctors –– it’s no surprise that many sales are lost before you ever get to deliver the policy.
Accelerated underwriting, first introduced in 2011, helped with this. But the problem some financial professionals encountered was that they took a pretty big gamble as to whether their client would actually be approved since only 30-40% were eligible to be accelerated.
The other 60-70% required you to go back to the client to tell them they had to go through full underwriting –– a lengthy and often onerous process, complete with finger pokes and fluid draws. These perceived roadblocks could easily turn a prospective client off and cause them to back out.
Early on, insurers balanced the added risk from accelerated underwriting by reducing the percentage of clients eligible to be accelerated or increased the cost of the product.
Fortunately, there are products being developed today that provide an even quicker turnaround on underwriting AND have higher projected acceptance rates. This is a result of better data sources combined with large strides in research and development. These products allow qualified applicants to receive an instant underwriting decision and in-force coverage in as little as a few days. With a major selling point being no invasive underwriting to slow the process down.
Now, you might be thinking a policy like this must be expensive. And of course, there is some tradeoff between speed and cost. However, there are ways to offset that. This can be accomplished through innovative product design and index crediting options, to name a couple.
There is at least one new life insurance product we're aware of that combines benefits of accelerated underwriting with common features of permanent life insurance, plus performance potential, targeting high-income executive-level clients. More on this later.
Strategy #2: Share a specific, strong, and relevant sales narrative.
With the changes to IUL products and illustrations following AG-49A, which put an end to using bonuses and multipliers as a way to illustrate a product more favorably, the way products are sold had to change. You can no longer lean solely on the projected performance in an illustration.
Now, you want to use the illustration to demonstrate conservative performance with the thought that actual performance would likely be better. This would make for a pleasant surprise when the client gets their annual statement.
But on top of that, you have an opportunity to speak to some top-of-mind concerns your high-income prospects may be facing in the aftermath of 2020 and government spending, as well as potential tax reform changes coming with the new administration.
While an IUL has always been a great option for someone looking for a death benefit, as well as the ability to grow cash values to access later as supplemental retirement income, there are other and extremely relevant retirement risks (read: future tax rate hikes) that can be addressed with IUL.
And that’s where your narrative should focus (after the death benefit discussion, of course).
For high-net-worth individuals, many of whom have investments and may be business owners, the tax rate increases being discussed by the Biden administration could be a major concern and reason for tax diversification within the client’s portfolio.
An IUL as part of a client’s overall retirement strategy, can be one way to reduce taxes they may face by way of corporate income tax, payroll and self-employment tax rate increases, capital gains rates, changes to estate and gift taxes –– just to name a few.
If you’re interested in getting started using a fact finder or client profile to identify risks in the client’s overall strategy. Or how you can use easy-to-understand reports to show a client different ways they could allocate their money to shave off potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxes.
If you would like leave-behind pieces for your clients that help explain the potential retirement risks they face, the affects of taxes and volatility on their retirement income or the top reasons to consider IUL, we can tell you how to get access to those materials. Just reach out to your Partners Advantage representative.
Strategy #3: Boost your credibility with IUL clients.
One of the toughest parts of working with high-net-worth clients is getting them to pick you. There is no shortage of financial professionals approaching these individuals and trying to secure a first meeting.
But there is a more effective way to attract top prospects to you.
And that is to position yourself as an authority so that clients find YOU rather than you having to compete for their attention.
But how do you do that?
We’ve found that authority building assets, like a book, can be a great way to uncover untapped markets and find new clients simply by sharing your knowledge and experiences in the book. Even with so much information accessible online and this pervasive idea that people “don’t read anymore,” it’s true that someone who has a book is revered in our society because books have a high perceived value.
And here’s the thing:
We're guessing you may not have the time to sit down and write a book right now, BUT you can get access to books that have already been written on a topic you specialize in and customize them. In this case, the topic of IUL.
Through our third-party affiliations, you can put your name on the cover of books written for the pre-retirement segment of the market or a book for those already in retirement, whichever target audience you like to work with. You can also author a pre-written foreward and include your photo, bio, and contact information in the book. All of which can position you as an authority on using IUL for supplemental retirement income.
Why should you care about this?
Often, when these books are given to existing or prospective clients, they read them, come to view you as an authority on the topic, and reach out to learn more. This passive approach to prospecting is a much easier way to find people who are ready to buy while instantly instilling confidence in your skills and abilities.
Premium clients want to invest in financial professionals who clearly know what they’re doing.
You can also supplement any books with presentations or other educational material to show clients the problem, create a desire for the solution you provide, and then give them a way to take the next step to work with you.
But here’s the deal –– the reasons to use IUL may seem simple…
However, there are complexities to properly structuring an IUL to accomplish a client’s goals.
That’s where you come in.
And if you’d like more help in working with IUL clients, ask us about our new Life Income Authority program where we draw on our years of experience with IUL to show you the technical aspects of properly structuring a policy. Plus, which products are suited for a client's specific situation.
And how to change the narrative in sales conversations so that you naturally overcome the common struggles of selling the product. Keep in mind, people are willing to pay to have a specific problem solved that they actually care about solving. So, the key is to tailor the discussion about IUL to these clients' needs.
If you missed the webinar where we talked about the new Fixed Indexed Universal Life (FIUL) product, complete the form below to listen to the recording. It's only available through select IMOs, so contact Partners Advantage for access before it becomes available for sale later in May.