Lindsay Bolton taught elementary school for several years, until her husband recruited her for Farmers Insurance.
“He practiced his pitch with me,” she says. |I started asking questions about what our earning potential was, and what he told me led me to quit my teaching job two weeks later.”
Bolton got licensed for selling property and casualty insurance as well as life and health in only a month. In 2019, the couple opened a Farmers agency with the reserve program, a three month period in which you earn 100% commission on your own before you get placed in the retail program with a tiered bonus structure.
“My $12,000 savings was gone after setting up the office,” Lindsay remembers. “We pushed through though, and it’s turned out pretty well for us. We even won Farmers’ Life Agent of the Year 2020 and Property and Casualty Agent of the Year in 2021.”
There have been other awards too: The couple has made it to the Toppers Club for the past two years, which means they sold over $350,000 in policies. “We’ve sold over a million in premium this year alone, close to $700,000 in revenue,” Bolton adds. “We also won the Triple Crown Award twice, for top premiums in personal lines, life and commercial insurance, and the Blue Base Award, for selling 12 life policies in our first six months in business.”
At a time when no one she knew was buying leads, Bolton joined forces with SmartFinancial whose insurance leads have been a big part of her success. Once she gets people on the phone after the initial conversation, she often closes the deal. She’s liked working these leads so much that she’s begun taking commercial live-transfer calls too.
“My account manager got my feet wet with data leads, and later we added live calls,” says Bolton. “We have been able to develop our own lead follow-up system, like DYL. She taught me the importance of following up, which has been a big part of my success. She is also active in adjusting my profile regularly to bring in higher quality leads.”
Bolton meets with her account manager biweekly and one of her producers meets with her once a week to address the quality of the leads they are receiving. It’s all really a partnership to improve each week and set higher goals. According to Bolton, “the other lead vendors can’t beat SmartFinancial in terms of consistency, service and lead quality.”
Despite her successes, Bolton still faces Biggest challenges because Farmers has such a niche market that it’s hard to find the right clientele. But they are growing: There are eight agents at the agency, including Bolton and her husband, and they are looking to fill two more positions right now.
“Our long term goal is growth and a second office location with more space to house the growth. Eventually, I’d like to take a step back from property and casualty and dive into commercial insurance sales only.”
4 Golden Tips From Lindsay Bolton
- It is smart to buy data leads in bulk if you’re starting out, keep your staff working and teach them the follow-up system you have in place using these shared leads.
- If you are a new agent on the retail program, hire as many people as you can starting out. Even 10K per month from each producer will qualify you for a bonus with Farmers.
- Have accountability for staff procedures in place so your staff can self manage. Use daily marketing forms, in which they can set their daily goals and list what they accomplished at the end of day.
- Create and stand by a culture you want to promote in your agency. Culture is super important in the workplace. The way you lead your team will drive them to success.