The sales landscape has changed drastically in the last ten years. A major contributor to these changes has been the increasing importance of social media as a selling tool. Prior to the emergence of social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter, sales were made mainly via word-of-mouth, phone calls, company websites, infomercials, and advertisements in the newspaper. Of course, these sales channels still exist and matter, but social media has become a communication juggernaut that can no longer be ignored as an invaluable sales tool.
This year, we’ve seen a recurring theme across conversations, panels, and regulatory bodies in the insurance and financial services industries: Fairness to consumers. You may read this and think that treating consumers in a fair and reasonable manner is common sense, but earlier this year the Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) took an extra step in ensuring consumer protection by drafting The Treating Financial Services Consumers Fairly Guideline. This topic proceeded to garner attention on a national scale, and was discussed at impactful conferences including the Canadian Association of Independent Life Brokerage Agencies (CAILBA) 2018 National Conference as well as the 2018 Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association (CLHIA) Compliance and Consumer Complaints Conference.
APEXA has been #ontheroad for a number of weeks, in part because it is conference season! I was pleased to have been a presenter or panelist at three of our industry’s most content-rich conferences. There are many compelling reasons to attend industry conferences, including the fact that in our world of electronic communication and conference calls, they provide an opportunity to meet your colleagues and to interact face-to-face, dialogue, stay current, share, and collaborate.
I recently convinced a friend to join me on a 3-day hike across the Trans Catalina Trail in California. After 2 years of building and launching APEXA I was ready to escape civilization and take on a different kind of challenge. This was no guided day hike. We’re talking on our own, everything on our backs for 27 miles and 1600’ elevation shifts. Luckily my friend was too busy to research what she was in for and booked a ticket on a whim. I knew that she had the fitness and mindset to conquer the hike, so I skipped further warnings. When the ferry approached the island and she saw the height of the mountains she turned to me, wide-eyed and said, “We’re going around those right?” I just smiled.
As a Life Advisor, one of the most important things you will do is pick the MGA or MGAs that you work with. Designed as the intermediator between the carrier and the Advisor, MGAs act as a necessary bridge between both parties. Working with MGA(s) can be beneficial to your business by providing services to aid with sales support, administration and training. The services provided by MGAs will vary from one to the next, but they often customize their services to an advisors’ needs.
APEXA is the Canadian digital life insurance industry platform that provides smart contracting and compliance. The Faces of APEXA series brings you the inside scoop on our innovative team as they tell their stories and recount how they became part of the APEXA family. Our second post gives you the background on Line Robillard, Sales and Account Executive for Quebec and Eastern Canada.
Over the years I have travelled the country and been fortunate enough to partake in some exciting industry events. Le Congres de l’assurance et de l’investissement is a great example of a convention that brings people together to discuss timely industry topics. Organizers describe the purpose of the day as inviting of all sectors of the life and health insurance industry to an event that drives development in the industry - based on the dialogue and information sharing of which I was able to partake, I would say they “Nailed It!” (as the saying goes).
In October, I participated in a panel discussion at the CLHIA Legal Section Annual Meeting in Winnipeg with Erica Hiemstra, AVP Distribution CLHIA and Sean Noguera, AVP Market Conduct GWL. A topic of our discussion was the CLHIA policy paper on Advisor oversight, published in June 2017.
#APEXANation, welcome to our APEXA 101 video series! This will be a four-part series covering the basic but important how-tos of using the APEXA system.
Welcome to the #APEXAProTips Roundup!
#APEXAProTips are monthly live tweet sessions where the APEXA team stands by live on Twitter to answer all of your questions. The Roundup highlights the top questions. The following questions are from our second session on September 14th. Missed our first session? Make sure to check out our first Roundup here!