The challenge of increasing your advisors’ productivity
Customers in many parts of Africa are now more tech enabled. They have different expectations than previous generations. Even within the past few years, those expectations have grown. Potential customers are less interested in the old ways. Things like going to an office or having an agent come into their home to talk about their insurance needs are no longer status quo.
Today’s consumer wants to meet via zoom or a similar online platform. They want the whole process to be more digital, more streamlined—faster and more effective. They have little appetite for manual form-filling or extended sales processes.
Advisors need to follow their clients into this tech-enabled future.
African insurers have an opportunity to help.
The insurer opportunity
In Africa, some of the larger insurance organizations provide their advisors with CRM solutions. But for many advisors, managing client relationships is handled through jury-rigged workflows. Many still use Outlook for scheduling, and spreadsheets or word docs for recording client information and communication.
That’s not an optimal solution.
None of those tools were built with advisor client relationship management in mind. Scheduling is not automated. The chance of activities falling through the cracks is very real. It’s difficult for advisors to monitor their activities and really manage their practices.
Even popular generic CRM solutions are not the right answer, because the solutions aren’t integrated with other insurer and advisor systems. Time gets wasted. Customization and maintenance become a headache that takes away from advisor productivity. Plus, organizations and brokers lack visibility into their advisors’ activities, making it challenging to manage their field force.
Organizations and brokers can remove all those frustrations by providing a CRM solution specifically tailored to the needs of their advisors.
The Solution: Pre-configured, advisor specific CRM increases automation in advisor practices
Customer Relationship Management systems (CRM) are software solutions that enable advisors to effectively manage all their client and prospect relationships.
Modern CRMs are designed to handle all the ways advisors interact with their clients. They use automation to streamline workflows and track of what has been accomplished. These solutions make it easy to manage client data and identify new sales opportunities.
A key element of advisors’ digital transformation is to implement a CRM solutions that are purpose-built for their business. One that is designed for the needs of their clients and that will enhance the advisor’s ability to manage their activity and relationships, ensure compliance, create an audit trail of their interactions with clients and help them manage their practice.
The opportunity for insurers and brokers is to provide advisors with the best CRM to build stronger relationships with their advisors and drive productivity and sales.
5 key benefits of CRM for financial advisors
CRM affects every part of an advisor’s business. It can help them manage and implement targeted marketing campaigns. It makes become compliance easier. Up-sell and cross-sell opportunities are revealed. And, it helps advisors uncover new prospects that match their ideal client profile.
The best advisor-specific CRM will increase advisor efficiency in all areas of their practice. It enables them to streamline workflows—saving time and effort. It manages activity, makes compliance easier to achieve, and it can make marketing and sales campaigns more effective.
1. Automate compliance
A particular advisor challenge in many parts of Africa is maintaining ownership of their prospect and client relationships. Traditionally client relationships have resided with the agent or broker rather than the insurer. But the industry is shifting. As insurers adopt more Direct to Consumer (D2C) solutions they also begin to disintermediate some advisors.
It’s becoming fairly common for advisors to complain that, after talking with a prospect for months, the prospect bought a policy directly from the insurer. In these cases, the advisor loses the relationship and doesn’t receive any commission for the work they did to uncover needs and educate the client.
What the advisor needs is to be able to point the regulator to a defensible audit trail that clearly shows the work the advisor did with the client that led to the eventual sale.
This type of functionality is built into a good, advisor-specific CRM. Records of all calls, emails and online meetings are automatically saved to the relevant client record. And, after thirty days, activities are frozen so that they can’t be changed, making them part of a permanent audit trail.
This gives advisors recourse to compensation for their prospecting and sales efforts. It streamlines and diffuses conflict between brokers or agents and the insurers they work with. And it ensures that all of the advisor work with a potential client is demonstrably compliant.
2. Automate advisor workflows
CRM solutions for financial advisors can remove obstacles that slow down workflows by automating business processes and the management of their activities. For each process in an advisor’s practice they can map out the steps that will be required. Each step in the workflow can be set up in the CRM as an activity. Then, the CRM system will send an alert when the time comes to perform the task.
So, no more reminders scrawled on post-it notes or forgotten calls. Advisors won’t have to worry about missed or incomplete tasks. They’ll be organized and efficient—spending more time on high-value activities, rather than trying to manually manage their workflows.
3. Centralize Data
Advisor-specific CRMs give organizations the ability to populate advisor tools with their clients’ investment and insurance data in one centralized location. This is accomplished through gateways that connect to insurer back office systems and pull current data into the CRM.
The best CRMs for advisors provide access to all client data in the same application. That means advisors will spend less time looking for important client data. They are freed to spend more time on the things that matter most.
4. Increase Marketing effectiveness
The best CRM solution for advisors has many built-in tools to make marketing campaigns more effective. They have filters to enable advisors to find ideal targets for their campaigns. Many include features like forms and templates so advisors can create the perfect email piece for a given campaign. Mail merge and secure mail delivery enable advisors to send those materials to the right prospects and clients quickly and securely.
Activity management tools will automate and track the activities in the follow-up process so that no opportunity is missed. The best CRM solutions for advisors have tools that automate marketing activities.
5. More easily manage sales opportunities
The The best CRM for advisor should help them manage their sales opportunities. Being able to effectively track and manage opportunities will enable them to work more proactively. It frees up time for preparation before the advisor gets in front of a client. And that increases their chances of making the sale.
A good CRM platform enables advisors to map out and manage any future sales opportunities. They will provide an overview of all the opportunities currently in play and a visual representation of the progress on each. Managing opportunities makes it easy to see what an advisor needs to focus on each day.
Putting it all together
Good advisor CRM software can free advisors from the weight of paper. It will make them more efficient and make their marketing and sales campaigns more effective. It will protect clients’ personal and financial information with secure email capability and make compliance easier to achieve.
The best CRMs for advisors are tailored to their business. They centralize client data in one location and enable advisors to more effectively manage client relationships. They support advisor efforts to create awesome client experiences and help build stronger relationships.
And, providing advisors with this type of CRM gives organizations and brokers a window into advisors’ activity. They can easily see what advisors are doing and use this information to help their advisors increase their productivity.
For African organizations, offering advisor-specific CRM to their agent force is a tremendous way to build deeper client relationships, increase advisor productivity and drive sales.