Why successful final expense and preneed agents have to be more than just good salespeople
Here’s a story: a bright-eyed vacuum salesperson decides they want to use their skills and experiences in a more “career-like” field, so they look into final expense and preneed insurance. They think the techniques and strategies they’ve developed in the past will make them an immediate success.
It doesn’t take long to realize—being a final expense or preneed insurance agent is NOT about selling a product. It’s much more complicated and nuanced and, well, emotional.
They didn’t get into sales for the emotions of their clients. They got into sales for the chance to attend the yearly company international getaway.
Maybe final expense and preneed insurance is not for them.
As those of us who have been in the game for a while understand, final expense or preneed sales are not about selling a “product” or convincing clients that they “need” something they don’t yet have. Selling final expense or preneed insurance is an emotional—even intimate—experience as you get to know each client’s hopes, fears, priorities, and personalities.
When someone is pre-planning their funeral, their decisions are based on a lifetime of experiences, traditions, culture, and heritage. This “product” offered by agents is actually a culmination of a person’s whole life. New clients have to face, perhaps for the first time, the reality of their mortality and, at the same time, how they want to be remembered. They have to participate in the cognitive dissonance of a world that continues after they are gone. And you, as the agent, are the one who has to guide them to that reality.
Successful agents have mastered the art of forging personal relationships with their clients. They are genuinely concerned about their clients and truly want to provide them with a service that they know will be valuable to them and their families in the inevitable future. They become, for a short amount of time, part of the family.
They have to be, because planning for the future benefit of loved ones is foundational to the “product” they are offering their clients. Agents are selling future security, guidance, and solutions. This is no simple transaction. The details involved in these emotional decisions are profound—especially if the client is looking to plan and pay for their future funeral, interment, legal and/or transportation fees, in addition to life insurance that financially supports loved ones left behind. There’s a lot to unpack there.
To guide someone through that purchasing and planning process can be psychologically exhausting and emotionally taxing. It can cause agents to feel burdened. Trying to support someone as they make really life-altering decisions takes a toll. Which is why successful agents have to be more than just good salespeople.
Somehow, a vacuum that is also an air filter just doesn’t seem that important by comparison.