Yes! I meant 2013! I’ve been looking at what happened to our business, our partners’ businesses and our industry during last year. I’m looking for keys to the coming year, of course, so please stick with me…

In terms of growing agencies, of the roughly 100 agencies we are partners with, the top 10 growth agencies (by dollars increased not percent) reveal some interesting information:

  • The average increase was 18%
  • 4 of the 10 have been in business 10 years or more
  • 3 of the 10 have been in business 3 years or less
  • 5 of the 10 are commercial lines focused agencies
  • They come from large and small communities

What I draw from this is that product focus, size of community and years in business are not necessarily the determiners of growth. So, what were the causes of growth in these agencies? I see three things in common:

  • They all have some formal retention effort to keep customers
  • They all have some form of marketing and sales plan
  • They all experienced some benefit from rate increases

What can we learn from this?  Well, it’s good to be in a hardening market if you’re an agent!  But only if you have the means and commitment to keep your customers! There are lots of other agencies which did not perform as well in the same rate environment.

A commitment to marketing and aggressive marketing efforts make a difference.

As we can see, it didn’t matter what these agents sold or where they are. Age and experience was not limiting either. 

Next time, I’ll take a look at those agencies that grew the most in terms of percentage.

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