In our last couple blogs, we’ve talked about a different approach to renewals than the traditional one. Where traditionally brokers present plan options, employers choose a plan, and then have to figure out how to pay for it (or how much they will contribute), this strategy starts with the budget.
The employer first decides on their budget, then the broker presents only plans that fit into that budget, allowing for more financial transparency throughout the discussion—plus the ability for employers to budget for employee benefits in advance.
We’ve talked so far about how these budget-first approach can transform your renewals, but in this blog we wanted to focus on integrating it into your sales conversations. Because many employers are frustrated with their current benefits renewal process, presenting an alternate approach is likely to be attractive as a prospecting message. Here are a few tips.
Lead with targeted questions
This topic can be a great way to get in the door and score a first meeting with a prospect, whether you are doing cold calls, sending out mass mailers, or just networking with business owners at a local event. Ask about their current renewal process, with questions such as:
- Are you able to budget for your annual employee benefits renewal in advance?
- Are you ever surprised by the final cost you must pay for your benefits renewal?
- Do you feel like there is enough transparency in the renewal process?
Getting to some of this frustration is a good way to pique a prospect’s interest and convince them to meet with you to learn more.
Show them your capabilities
When you do get a first meeting, it’s time to show them what a renewal experience with you will be like (most importantly, how it will differ from their current experience). You’ll want to demonstrate the benefits technology that you use for your budget-first renewal approach. At this point you probably won’t have their actual plan data, but showing a sample plan will be sufficient to give them the overall experience.
Close the deal
If the prospect was impressed with your demonstration, suggest that you input their actual plans into the tool and come back for another meeting, so you can look at their plans and manipulate them within the tool. Chances are, they won’t be able to resist that offer. Once you are presenting their plans and showing how you can manipulate and work within their budget, you’ve set yourself up for a high probability close.
Want to learn more about how brokers are taking advantage of a budget-based approach for benefits planning, renewals and prospecting? Be sure and read our e-book, Budget-Based Benefits: A New Approach to Renewals.