Allen Sturtevant sells auto, home and renters insurance, financial products, commercial insurance and life insurance. However, that’s not how he started out. After studying business in college, he sold beer for a living. He used to fill a semi-truck with kegs and sell directly to bars, clubs and restaurants. However, he saw no way of ever owning his own business.
Sturtevant eventually went into insurance because a friend was selling for Allstate and was doing very well with his own agency. To his surprise, Allstate also gave Sturtevant a chance to grow his own business, even though he didn’t have any insurance experience.
He remembers what it was like when he started out in the business 25 years ago. “The leads came from your phone book,” he says. “When the do-not-solicit laws forbid cold calling, we had to find new ways to reach out to people.”
For a long time, Sturtevant relied on referrals to grow his business. He sent out lots of mailers too. Eventually, he realized he had to buy leads to grow as fast as he wanted. Today, Sturtevant buys leads from five different vendors, which include SmartFinancial.
Sturtevant likes the live-transfer calls he gets from SmartFinancial best because the callers are already vetted. “I buy as many calls as I can,” he says. “It’ll soon be two years since I started working with SmartFinancial, and I only wish I could get more calls!”
He cites the persistence of his team as the number one reason for his success with the transfers. Everyone in the office makes the most of leads by showing up fully prepared on each call. “You have to have a script for every objection,: Sturtevant explains. “You have to train your people to overcome objections too. Otherwise, the shopper will hang up on you!”
Overall, the future looks bright for the Sturtevant Agency, and Sturtevant is itching to grow. “I’d like to grow between five and 10% a year,” he says. “In five years I want to be 50% larger!” Aside from buying more leads, Sturtevant is also open to expanding by buying another agency at the right price.
Allen Sturtevant’s 4 Golden Tips for Selling Insurance
Have your producers fully prepared with a script from the initial call to the close of the call. Train them in ways to 1. overcome objections in the initial part of the call, 2. keep people on the calls, 3. close the sale and 4. ask for money.
Work hard. A lot of people think they can just cruise by because they own their own business. You’ve got to do the work.
When hiring producers, have them take a personality assessment to see if they are the right fit for the job.
Hire a company to generate the resumes and go through them for you to find the best sales people. It’ll make a 100% difference in the quality of who you hire.