Yes, Valentine's Day has passed. But does that really mean you have to lose that loving feeling? No, of course not. The question is, though, how do you win a marketers' love? Coffee? Lunch? Not even close.
If you're a producer, ask yourself this: Are you doing everything you possibly can to provide your marketer or CSR with the most complete, accurate, and detailed information on this new risk? Are you helping them to do their jobs as good as they can? Be honest. No, really honest. Really. Honest.
It's okay if you answered 'maybe','occasionally', or even 'no', because you're not alone. The number one complaint we hear from commercial-lines marketers and CSR's is that producers just don't provide them with enough risk data to get a competitively-priced quote as quickly as possible.
What you're giving your marketers may not be as sparse as the 'napkin submission', but you're probably giving bare-bones information and moving on to the next opportunity.
The equation is simple: the more complete and accurate the information you provide to your marketer or CSR, the more competitive your quote and the faster you'll get it.
As a producer, you act as a front-line underwriter out in the field. So start thinking and acting like you're underwriting each and every piece of new business you see. If your office has pre-defined questionnaires that you can use, use them. If not, create your own. Your marketers and CSR's will love you for it.
To create a questionnaire your marketers will love, provide info from the following three categories:
1. Liability Details
Also known as Underwriting Details, you want to collect information about the prospect's business such as:
- name, address, website
- form of business & description of business
- years in business, annual gross receipts, and liquor liability
- claims history
2. Risk Details
Think of risk details as comprising two components: 1) the actual physical location(s) where business is conducted, and 2) the buildings, contents and equipment at each location(s). The following are examples of the kind of risk data you may want to collect:
- the physical address for each location
- inspection reports, if possible (underwriters love these)
Building, Contents and Equipment
- Building construction details, renovations, fire extinguishing systems, loss payees
- Contents in the building like computers and furniture
- Equipment such as heavy machinery like forklifts
- Stock that might be always kept on hand
To make your marketers really love you, include the suggested coverages for your prospects' risk. Depending on the risk profile, you may include property, business income, machinery breakdown, crime or liability coverage recommendations. Also include limit recommendations for each coverage.
Liability details, risk details and coverages are the foundation of a good submission. Help your marketers, and yourself, by providing them with detailed information on each. And in the process, increase your chances of success on that new piece of business you've been working hard to secure.