Have you seen the Accenture Independent Agent Survey which was recently released? If you haven’t please drop me a line and I will send you a copy. I think it is important for every agent to read as it contains a lot of useful information about what agents, carriers and consumers are thinking about the insurance landscape.

Here is one powerful point made in the survey report:

“Google, Walmart, Overstock.com, IKEA and several auto manufacturers are among these new or prospective competitors”

AND Accenture reported that in their consumer survey that “67% of respondents said they would consider purchasing home, auto and life insurance from businesses other than insurers, with 23% saying they would consider buying from an online service provider such as Amazon or Google.” Moreover, they reported that “60 and 62 percent of survey participants respectively had utilized these channels to buy insurance in the preceding two years.”

In the same survey report guess what IA’s said was their greatest concern? Retaining customers. This makes sense. But who do these same IA’s think are their greatest competition? 39% think the insurance companies direct solutions are. But 54% think it is either neighboring IA’s, large brokers or neighboring captive agents. Only 7% identify their greatest threat as insurers “collaborating with other business entities”.

Do you see a disconnect here? I do.

Consumers are willing to buy insurance from non insurance providers in overwhelming percent numbers and independent agents don’t seem to have a clue.

It is clear that consumers have already, and will continue in increasing numbers to embrace insurance purchasing online. What do agents think? From the survey:

“Agents generally do not view technology as the answer to their needs. Our survey respondents ranked digital capabilities fifth out of 12 priority areas…agents place a relatively low priority on mobile and social media capabilities.”

But “customers preference for interacting with their insurance providers via digital channels continues to grow, with 71 percent of customers willing to purchase insurance online;67 percent interested in insurance products and services offered via their mobile devices; and 55 percent interested in insurance services offered on social media.”

DO YOU SEE A MASSIVE DISCONNECT BETWEEN INSURANCE AGENTS AND CONSUMERS? If you don’t you’re blind!

One thing I know for a guaranteed fact: no business that ignores its customers survives.

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