Excellent product knowledge can make up for being a poor salesman
I had a complete and total setup. Â I had two monitors, fast internet, and four phone lines for making and receiving phone calls.
I knew how health insurance worked, and It was easy for me to build rapport with people my age or younger.Â Unlike the life insurance space, the health insurance space had already gone through the phase of selling over the phone, so several companies offered the product.
I even had customers doing a screen share with me to complete the application process. This was right up my alley, the life insurance space was still trying to figure out over the phone, but the health insurance market was booming.
Then comes theÂ Affordable Care Act,Â most often known as Obama Care.
As an Individual, I was excited about the idea of No Lifetime Maximums and No Declining People due to health issues.Â As an Agent, I was mortified because the structure on how health insurance companies could payout commissions would change.
Around that time, I had enough life insurance companies offering products over the phone that I was able to start transitioning to life insurance.
Once the law was enacted, I started to get the letters from health insurance companies about the changes in my commission structure and some companies even closed down.Â Since I expected this to happen, I had gotten the health insurance side of my business down to about 40% of my total book of business and immediately switched 100% to life insurance.
I made itâŠ Or did I?
Here I was, selling life insurance over the phone Like I had always dreamt, and I was selling multiple products.
I had Fully underwritten term life for the young and super healthy, no-exam life insurance for people who didnât want to take exams, and final expense life insurance for people over the age of 50.Â If you needed life insurance, I could sell it to you over the phone, no matter your age orÂ health conditions.
The process had even caught up to the point where I could do an e-application through email with life insurance.Â I remember it clear as day the words of a general agent âYou will never be able to sell life insurance over the phone.âÂ But here I was, deep in my career, making anywhere between $60,000 to $100,000 per year, I had no boss (except for my husband), and no one could stop me.
It didnât matter that I had to work 14 hours a day to meet my personal sales goals, nor did it matter that I couldnât spend as much time with my family, Right?Â While I was very grateful for the income that being a Life Insurance agent gave me, I didnât like the lifestyle one bit.
I lived for the weekend like everyone else; the only difference is that I couldnât separate my work life from my personal life.
I found myself answering emails when I should be relaxing, or trying to send in an underwriting requirement so that I can get a policy out of underwriting faster.
I realized I was in a relationship with my husband and with my business and my husband wasnât having any of it.Â I finally started to normalize my work schedule and take responsibility for not working outside of work hours.Â Then, out of nowhere, my gut starts feeling something, some sort of shift.
More and more customers are asking if I can email the quote, they are asking if there is anywhere online, they can learn about life insurance.Â Customers no longer want to talk to me much, and most of them felt like they knew more about life insurance than I did.
It was great that customers were becoming more educated about the insurance they were buying, and in my mind, it felt like everyone wanted to do this process without an agent.
There was a company that I always wanted to be like by the name of EHealth Insurance; they did everything in the Health Space, that I wanted to do for the Life Insurance Industry.Â Everything was online; customers could learn about a product and purchase it from their site without any hassle from an agent.
However, if they needed an agent, they were still there to assist.Â After doing some research, I found out that websites can actually make money and my companyÂ Simply InsuranceÂ was born.
I failed at having a career as a life insurance agent, but I saw the future of insuranceâŠ The Online Market.
Each of these failures could have made me want to stop and get a 9 to 5 job and say to hell with trying to be a success.Â Â But, I had a voice in me that always said, donât stop, keep going, follow your gut.
Just take a look at all the things the four failures taught me from above:
In 2017 I created Simply Insurance, the goal was to be an online market place where customers could purchase life insurance online, all without an agent.
I had no clue how to make money online, but there was a ton of education on it. Â I invested in education to become great at SEO and Content marketing. I had to know how everything worked.Â I decided I didnât want to share in the commission of an insurance sale, so I went the affiliate route with my website.
This assured that I would get paid per lead or application submission once a customer decided to get covered.Â I took all of the lessons I had learned from my failures and put them into my online business.Â My family acknowledged that I would need to spend more time, in the beginning, to get things running.
And guess what:
After just two years, Simply Insurance is a six-figure online business.
We went from selling only life insurance to offering Pet Insurance, Homeowners, Renters, Concealed Carry, Accidental Death, & Disability Insurance.
Simply Insurance was founded in 2017, but it was started in 2008, so while I did build a successful blog in under two years, it took me nine years to get there.Â I also just co-founded a business by the name ofÂ Credit Knocks, with a few good friends and our goal is to educate the average person on how to grow and rebuild their credit.
So remember, it isnât about the failure; itâs about the lessons learned.
This article originally appeared on Your Money Geek.