Lead Generation

How to Market Yourself on Social Media – Ep. 15

Episode 15 is all about how to market yourself on social media. By subscribing to this podcast, you’ll also get access to our e-Book titled: “Social Media Marketing for Insurance Agents” which goes into greater detail on how to market yourself using social media. 

We begin this episode by discussing something exciting that FitBit has in the works to allow users to share their health data with healthcare providers and manage chronic conditions. Then we do a deep-dive into how to market yourself on social media.

First off, what is social media? Sarah and Jessica start by discussing the basics of social media and how to use it successfully to grow your business. This includes how to select your target audience, social media compliance, understanding types of content, creating a social media strategy, social media platforms, and more!

Utilizing multiple social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn is key when marketing yourself online. Our e-Book gives you step-by-step instructions on how to create profiles on each platform and best practices for remaining compliant. Sarah and Jessica touch on all of this in the podcast and more!

Plus, we end on a positive note with our very own Director of Digital Engagement, Jenn Pratt whose team was responsible for putting together the e-Book on this topic. She tells us an inspiring story about how even though all the odds were stacked against her, she overcame adversity to get where she is today.

Podcast Episode 15 – How to Market Yourself on Social Media Full Transcript:

Sarah: Welcome to Selling SMART with Sarah Smith….

Jessica: And Jessica Vara!

Sarah: Today’s episode is all about how to market yourself on social media. Lucky for you, if you’re listening to this podcast, you also now have access to our e-Book titled: “Social Media Marketing for Insurance Agents” which will go into greater detail on how to market yourself online using social media. We also discuss something exciting that FitBit has in the works and we conclude with a feel good story from our Director of Digital Engagement, Jenn Pratt!

Disruptive Waves:

Jessica: So by the time this podcast is out, Fitbit will have launched a brand new service called FitBit Premium! 

Sarah: That’s right! This paid service will develop personalized wellness reports allowing users to share their data with their physician, including health data trends and analyses of activity, heart rate, sleep and weight fluctuations.

Jessica: Which is awesome! They also plan to launch a personal coaching product in 2020 for users who are managing chronic conditions like diabetes.

Sarah: And they will have a limited pilot available for that at the end of this year! So big things are happening!

Jessica: Yes, big things for sure! With these new developments, people will be able to export their wearable data from the Fitbit dashboard in order to share it with their provider, although it doesn’t integrate directly into the EMR. 

Sarah: The subscription service will also include sleep tracking, customized fitness and diet programs as well as health reports like we mentioned earlier. 

Jessica: The premium cost will be $9.99 per month or $79.99 annually and will be included under Fitbit Care which is a one-year-old connected care platform for employers, health plans and health systems.

Sarah: Yeah, so just be aware! This may be something that would be of interest to you or people you know. It sounds like a great tool and just one of the many innovations emerging in the marketplace to help improve healthcare and people’s personal wellness! We got this information from HealthcareDive so make sure to check out their website, they have a lot of great content related to breaking news in the healthcare space.

All Aboard the Knowledge Train:

Sarah: Okay so as we mentioned earlier, today’s episode is all about how to market yourself on social media! If you want a copy the e-book so you can review this information later, we’ve got a link in the description on our podcast website! DOWNLOAD HERE

Jessica: So before we dive into how to market yourself, let’s start with an overview of social media and the insurance industry. We have entered a new era of communication. Gone are the days of the one-way stream of communication from business to customer. Social media now allows for a dialogue between the business and customers. Today’s accessibility to people and brands is unprecedented! Businesses are successfully taking advantage of this new gateway, and using it to reach their audiences. You should too!!

Sarah: But how does an insurance agent like you actually take advantage of this new tool and use it to market yourself? Let’s start out by understanding the basics of social media. 

There are many forms of social media and chances are, if you haven’t been hiding under a rock since the dawn of the internet, you have used at least one social media platform in your lifetime, if not many. But the way you use social media as an individual is very different from how you should use it as a business.

Jessica: Understanding how to market yourself on social media really depends on your industry. If you’re listening to this podcast, than there’s a high probability that you are in sales or would like to be. And there’s an even higher probability that you are in Medicare Sales. We all know Medicare is heavily regulated, which means you can’t just post whatever you want on social media to market yourself. You must remain compliant. We will cover compliance a little later in this podcast. But the biggest thing to remember about marketing yourself on social media is that you should use social media to humanize your business, build relationships with potential clients, and spread the word about your business. Ultimately, you are using social media to market yourself and generate leads.

Sarah: If you are in the Medicare space, you know that not all, but a large majority of your clientbase will be made up of seniors. This means your main target audience (individuals who you want to engage with) will be seniors. Okay so you may be thinking, but wait Sarah and Jessica… do seniors even use social media? The answer may surprise you.

While it may seem like individuals 65 & older aren’t using social media, they absolutely are. In fact, Pew Research Center found that 67% of seniors use the internet and 34% of Americans ages 65 & older use Facebook and Twitter. That’s a lot of potential leads right there that you could be missing out on if you aren’t marketing yourself on social media!

Jessica: Unlike millennials, seniors tend to use social media more as an encyclopedia, to gain knowledge on particular topics that interest them. You can tap into this desire by providing Medicare-eligibles (whether they be seniors or not) pertinent information about their health, new technologies in the healthcare space and educational information regarding Medicare.

Okay so now that you have a background in the basics of social media for business, we want to talk about one more very important topic before we discuss how to market yourself on social media and that my friends is COMPLIANCE. DUH DUH DUH. 

Sarah: Yeah yeah we know. Compliance is one of those things that no one likes to talk about, one because it tends to be dry and 2 because well if you’ve received a compliance violation you know it’s a big deal. And it’s no different when discussing how to market yourself on social media.

Jessica: There are very strict guidelines that CMS puts on social media marketing and they are written directly into the Medicare Marketing & Communication Guidelines which CMS updates and releases every year. If you want to know more about the guidelines for 2020, we will cover them in more depth in a later episode with our compliance manager. For the purposes of this episode, what you really need to know is that social media is less about marketing and more about communication. 

The main thing to note is that you cannot market specific products or aim to steer a beneficiary towards any specific plans or carriers. Keep everything you post on social media generic in nature. Focus more on educating beneficiaries on Medicare-related topics rather than plan-specific details or benefits.  

Sarah: Here are some big no-no’s:

  1. Just because someone likes your post, follows you, or comments on your post DOES NOT mean you have permission to contact.
  2. You can answer questions via social media, but do not address them beyond the scope of the question or statement
  3. Never buy social media leads or referrals. This will not give you permission to contact.

And for your reference, we’ve got a ton more information on social media compliance within this awesome e-Book!

Jessica: Okay now that we got that out of the way, let’s get into the fun stuff! Well, we think it’s fun since we do this for a living. But honestly, you can have fun with it as well! How to Market Yourself on social media using Content Marketing! Okay so if we want to go back to the basics, what exactly is content?

Sarah: When talking about social media, content can mean a LOT of things. It refers to things like posts, blog posts, photos, infographics, videos, podcasts, eBooks, articles, webinars, case studies, promotions, etc. 

But just knowing all the types of content that you can post on social media won’t really get you anywhere. What’s most important is the quality of the content that you’re posting. Think about how much content you consume each day and start thinking about what brands stand out to you and why?

Jessica: Right, you always want to put yourself in your target audience’s shoes. What do they want to know? What information are they searching for? What would make them want to engage with the content you post? These are all really important questions when thinking about how to market yourself on social media. Its similar to selling right? People like to engage with people they know and like. Similar to sales, if they don’t trust you and they don’t like you, they probably won’t want to engage with your posts and therefore will keep scrolling.

Sarah: Okay so what are some of the most important factors when coming up with a strategy for how to market yourself on social media?

  1. Know Your Audience. We talked about this a bit earlier. If you’re in the Medicare space, your target audience should be Medicare-eligibles which mostly consists of seniors. So think about what seniors would be looking for when scrolling through social media and what sorts of images, videos and messaging would catch their eye. You can even do some market research to help! Google is your friend people!

Jessica:

  1. Establish Goals. If you want a more in-depth guide to Setting SMART goals We have a whole podcast on this topic but for now think about what your end goal is. (Access Ep. 5 here). Why are you posting on social media? How many leads do you hope to generate? How often do you want to post? These are some of the questions you should be asking yourself as you set your social media goals.

Sarah:

  1. Create & Curate Quality Content. All this means is you can either create your own content to post on social media so in other words, write your own blog, create a video explaining something, etc. and/OR you can repost content that already exists! Just make sure you’re giving the proper credit. Give credit where credit is due! There are pro’s and con’s to both so make sure to check out the e-book we’ve provided to dive into greater detail! You can find a deep-dive on pages 21-28 where we discuss tips for creating and curating content, writing resources, design tips, image dimensions for different social media platforms, avoiding plagiarism and more!

Jessica:

  1. Time Management. Don’t take up too much of your time on social media. It doesn’t have to take all day if you’re doing it right! Just a few tips that may help you stay on track include: creating your content all at once, creating a content calendar, using a content management tool to schedule posts, and posting timely content as needed.

Sarah:

  1. And Lastly, Review Your Analytics. What’s the point in posting all this awesome content on social media if you never check to see if it’s working? Reporting is incredibly important. You should consistently review your posts to make sure that what you’re posting is in fact generating you leads, generating interest, or hitting whatever goal that you’ve set for yourself related to your social media strategy.

Jessica: Alright now that you know the basics on how to market yourself on social media, let’s talk platforms. How do you know which one to use? Well the answer is, it depends. But we’ve selected four platforms to discuss today that we think best suit the needs for insurance agents like you!

  1. Let’s start with Facebook – Facebook is great for client engagement. Facebook is probably the most used social media platform by your biggest target audience, seniors. Make sure to read pages 37-42 of the e-Book for a step-by-step guide on how to create a Facebook Business page! You’ll want to separate your personal profile from your business profile because mixing the two can get confusing for your potential clients and privacy of course. 

Sarah:

  1. Twitter – Twitter is great for engaging with clients & colleagues. With Twitter, you’ll want to follow other insurance professionals and engage with content that would get your profile seen by your target audience. You can tweet your own content, reply to others tweets, retweet other people’s content (in other words repost), and like content! Using hashtags is also a great way to gain followers and engagement with your tweets. And if you want a deep dive into how to market yourself on twitter, read pages 44-55 in the e-Book!

Jessica: 

  1. LinkedIn – LinkedIn is great for engaging with colleagues. You could use this for networking purposes with other agents and maybe even get some cool new ideas and sales techniques!
  2. Forums – Forums are a great way to engage with colleagues as well. You can talk with others about what works, and what doesn’t work. And it’s just another really great place to make connections and share your expertise.

Sarah: Now that you have a solid foundation for how to market yourself on social media, it’s time to get started! Know your audience, set some goals, create profiles on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, and begin creating and curating content. Don’t forget to analyze your strategy and make changes based on the results. Social Media is an ever-changing space, so always stay up to date on the newest trends and don’t be afraid to try new things (as long as they’re compliant of course!) 

Jessica: This podcast episode just scratches the surface of all the amazing information our Digital Engagement team at Senior Market Advisors has put together for you in our e-Book: Social Media Marketing for Insurance Agents so make sure to download that and get going on developing your own social media strategy to grow your business!

Ending on a Positive Note:

Jessica: Alright we’re here on Ending on a Positive Note and we have our very own Director of Digital Engagement, Jenn Pratt. So thanks for being with us. I know it’s really cool to have you on this one since we’re talking about these social media marketing e-Book that your team put together and how amazing it is.

Jenn: Yeah great to be here!

Jessica: Yeah we’re excited to have you! And you’re going to talk about overcoming adversity right?

Jenn: Yes definitely. Something that really holds true to my heart is – I grew up in a very disadvantaged family – single mother, homeless half my childhood, and I came out of my neighborhood… I was the only one that graduated high school, went to college, and got my MBA as well so I had all the odds stacked against me and I just decided I wanted to have a good life and I didn’t want to get in the same things that the other people in my neighborhood did – you know gangs and drugs. Even though my mom was a single mom, she always pushed education on me and that’s what I’ve done with my boys. And the fact that I went through all that and still came out, as my kids have said, half okay, you know I really love hearing stories of people like me that have overcome a lot of challenges and that’s another way that I’ve always given back to the community.

I’m also in the process of getting a foster child so I can give someone else a good life that would not get it otherwise.

Jessica: Wow that’s amazing! How do your boys feel about that?

Jenn: They’re a little iffy about it but they understand that they have a wonderful life and they want to share that experience too.

Jessica: I’m sure that whole experience is going to teach them a lot and shape them into real great people as well.

Jenn: So we’re super excited and hopefully we’ll get our foster child within the next two months.

Jessica: Do you know which age range or if it’s a girl or boy?

Jenn: We said any age, any nationality, any gender. We’re welcome. They said there is a long waiting list for younger children so we’ll probably end up getting an older child which would be fine. We’re more than welcome to it!

Jessica: Is this something that you’ve always wanted to do?

Jenn: Yes, it’s something that I’ve always wanted to do specifically because I went through all that adversity and I just want to give back to somebody else.

Jessica: That’s amazing, wow! How heartwarming. Thank you so much for sharing that.

Jenn: Your welcome!

Sarah: Want more Medicare sales related content? Follow Senior Market Advisors on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter – links in the description. We post new episodes every other Friday so make sure to follow and like us to stay up to date with all the newest content! If you’re liking our podcast, share our posts with the hashtag SELLING SMART to be entered to win an Amazon Echo Dot! 

Facebook: Senior Market Advisors

Instagram: @SeniorMarketAdvisors

Twitter: @SeniorMarketAdv


Sarah: If you want to learn more about how Senior Market Advisors can be your home for success this AEP, give us a call at 844-334-6066. If you want to be featured on the podcast, visit www.seniormarketadvisors.com/podcast and click on the button that says “Share Your Story.” 

Jessica: We appreciate you joining us this week on Selling SMART 

Sarah: with Senior Market Advisors! 

Setting Up a Sales Event – Ep. 8

In Episode 8, Sarah and Jessica talk about how to set up a successful sales event. They also discuss the recent insulin price increases and its effect on Medicare beneficiaries. Insulin prices have continued to rise, and many Medicare beneficiaries struggle to pay for their out-of-pocket costs. It’s important to understand the price increases so you can inform beneficiaries of the benefits of Part D and ultimately make a sale. If you want to learn more about insulin price increases, you can read our blog: https://seniormarketadvisors.com/blog/insulin-price-increase-and-impacts-on-beneficiaries/

We also bring on our VP of Sales, Carla Woodward to explain the process of how to set up an event to generate leads. There are different types of events and each has its own compliance concerns. Carla breaks down the process for how one would set up an event whether it be an educational event or a sales event and goes over the CMS guidelines to keep you compliant! We discuss why you should set up events to generate leads, compliance concerns, how to choose an event type and venue, event preparation, how to be successful at your event, and what to do after the event.

Finally, Carla sticks around with us to share a motivational story. Want to be featured on the podcast? Share your story with us at www.seniormarketadvisors.com/podcast.

Setting Up A Sales Event – Ep. 8 Full Transcript

Sarah: Welcome to Episode 8 of Selling SMART with Sarah Smith….

Jessica: And Jessica Vara!

Sarah: In today’s episode… we’re going to go over how to set up a sales event! We also talk about how increases in insulin prices are impacting beneficiaries.

Disruptive Waves:

Sarah: According to the American Diabetes Association, half of Americans over the age of 60 have diabetes. Insulin prices have continued to rise, and many Medicare beneficiaries struggle to pay for their out-of-pocket costs. It’s important to understand the price increases so you can inform beneficiaries of the benefits of Part D and ultimately make a sale.

Jessica: Did you know the typical insulin users costs went from $7.80/day in 2012 all the way up to $15/day in 2016. That’s more than a 100% increase just in 4 years! This causes a huge burden on beneficiaries because insulin is on average only 30% of all diabetes-related costs. 

Sarah: These are individuals who need your help! As an agent, it’s important to understand what Medicare Part D covers so you can help beneficiaries get the coverage they need. 

Jessica: So first, it’s important to understand Medicare Insulin coverage vs. Part D coverage. Original Medicare Part B covers things like blood glucose test strips, glucose monitors, glucose control for checking test accuracy, and therapeutic shoes or inserts. Medicare Part B does not fully cover insulin. Part B only covers insulin that is needed for an external insulin pump and may be covered as durable medical equipment. Part B doesn’t cover other forms or insulin or pens, syringes or needles.

Sarah: Right, so it really doesn’t cover most of the necessary AND expensive parts. This is where Medicare Part D can come in and be really helpful. Unlike Medicare Part B, Part D DOES cover insulin, unless it’s used through an external pump. Part D also covers diabetes drugs, pens, syringes, needles, swabs and gauze, and inhaled insulin devices.

Jessica: When you’re selling Part D plans to beneficiaries, be sure to discuss all the benefits on top of what we just discussed! Some key benefits include: drug coverage that isn’t covered by Original Medicare Parts A & B, drug formularies that ensure their drugs are covered, that the Part D donut hole is closing in 2020 and the Medicare Extra Help program, if they qualify. 

Sarah: If you want this information in written form, you can visit www.seniormarketadvisors.com/blog to read more! We have also provided a link to the blog in the description.

All Aboard the Knowledge Train:

Sarah: Looking for new ways to generate leads? Setting an event in your area can be a great way to generate leads. There’s a lot that goes into setting up an event so we are lucky to have our VP of Sales Carla Woodward and our Senior Compliance Manager, Gina Angelo, with us to help you learn how to set up an event the right way and to remain compliant! Thanks for being here Carla and Gina!

Carla: Good to be here.

Sarah: Okay so let’s say I’m an agent, and I’m looking for ways to generate leads. Why would I choose to set up a sales event?

Carla:

  • This is the best way to get hot leads. You’ve met them, you know their interested. There’s already a relationship thats built
  • Provides community engagement and awareness to your brand!
  • You want to let your community know that you are the person to go to for Medicare insurance questions.

Sarah: So what’s the first step of setting up an event? 

Carla: 1st step is to decide on type of event you want to do

  • Educational?
  • Sales event?
  • Formal or informal?

What we like to do is informal sales events. Business card away at informal educational event. Can’t make the sale on the spot though.

Educational event you’re just let them know something > don’t have the option to sell because its not registered with CMS.

Sarah: Okay so it sounds like there are a lot of regulations through CMS around events. Can you go over the compliance of setting up an event so agents know what to look out for?

50.1 – Educational Events 42 CFR §§ 422.2262, 422.2268(b)(7),(8), and (11),423.2262, 423.2268(b)(7),(8), and (11) 

Educational events are designed to inform beneficiaries about Medicare Advantage, Prescription Drug, or other Medicare programs. Educational events:  

  • Must be explicitly advertised as educational;  
  • May be hosted in a public venue by the Plan/Part D sponsor or an outside entity;  
  • May include communication activities and distribution of communication materials;  
  • May answer beneficiary initiated questions;  
  • May set up a future marketing appointment, and distribute business cards and contact information for beneficiaries to initiate contact (this includes completing and collecting a Scope of Appointment (SOA) form);  
  • Must not include marketing or sales activities or distribution of marketing materials or enrollment forms; and  
  • May not conduct a marketing/sales event immediately following an educational event in the same general location (e.g., same hotel). 

50.2 – Marketing/Sales Events 42 CFR §§ 422.2268(b)(1-5), 423.2268(b)(1-5) 

Marketing/Sales Events are designed to steer or attempt to steer potential enrollees, or the retention of current enrollees, toward a plan or limited set of plans. The following requirements apply to all marketing/sales events:  

  • Plans/Part D sponsors must submit scripts and presentations to CMS prior to use, including those to be used by agents/brokers;  
  • Sign in sheets must clearly be labeled as optional;  
  • Health screenings or other activities that may be perceived as, or used for, “cherry picking” are not permitted;  
  • Plans/Part D sponsors may not require attendees to provide contact information as a prerequisite for attending an event; and  
  • Contact information provided for raffles or drawings may only be used for that purpose.

Sarah: Okay so I’ve decided what type of event I want to do. Can you give some tips on good spots to actually have events?

Carla: All types of events. Go to food banks, senior centers, community events, county fairs, music festivals

Sarah: So I have my event type and where I want to host it. What’s next?

Carla: Once you decided on type, file with the carrier

Each carrier is different. Each carrier has specific time frame. Most need within 9 days to 2 weeks to file. Some don’t need anything. Don’t be afraid to reach out and ask your local market support because they should be able to help.

Some carriers require you to do extra modules in their training. They may have to do this before the event. Take some sort of additional online class 10 minutes. All info is housed on the carrier portals. 

Sarah: What do I need to bring to the event to be successful?

Carla: At SMA we’ve put together a checklist. Depending on event type, have a table, tablecloth, stuff to make table look flashy. Banners, rack cards, business cards. Quick informational giveaways. Swag to attract people to come over.

We do water bottles. Order labels with your info and brand on it. Stress balls, pedometers, other things. Reach out to the carrier or your local market support to see if they can provide you any giveaways. Benefits of partnering with SMA is we often times will co-op this with you. Segue to talk about storefront. See all the amazing giveaways we give at events. We can customize that.

Checklist: only carrier information you filed with can be displayed. Can file with multiple carriers. You are there to represent the carrier you filed with. You can keep everything generic if you want and file with all the carriers you represent. Agents do it in all different ways.  It’s up to you.

Doing Medicare 101 presentations, educate them on why you should eat super foods etc.

Make sure you have business reply cards there. We are successful at larger events where they may not be thinking about talking to you on the spot, they can fill out for more information. Important to point out that you can not ask them to fill one out or make them fill it out. Lets them get back to the reason they are at the event but still get more info from you later.

Sarah: How do I get people to come to my event? Can I market the event?

Carla: You want to drive traffic to your table. CMS allows us to do a giveaway of less than $15 per person. At SMA we raffle something off. Sometimes it’s an echo dot. As long as the event has. Large event you can roll the $15 per person into one large gift. If there are only a few people at the event, you may also want to bring something smaller. Select door prize later to remain compliant.

Senior center may be supposed to have 1000 people at event but only 4 show up. You need to make sure you have the correct giveaway.

We typically take first name and phone number. We call them to get their address to send the prize to them. We keep giveaways completely separate from BRC and those BRC’s are completely optional.

Sarah: What do I do once the event has ended?

Carla: Make sure you collect all business reply cards at the end. If carrier has follow-up paperwork that you need to do after the vent. Reach out to carrier to let them know how it went, how many BRC’s you collected. 

Sarah: What do I do with the BRC’s? Is there compliance concerns there in how I go about contacting them?

Carla/Gina: You can call individuals who have given permission for a plan or sales agent to contact them (examples of permission include filling out a business reply card, emailing the Plan/Part D sponsor requesting a return call, or asking a customer service representative to have an agent contact them). Also, make sure you retain this documentation. The norm is the current plan year PLUS 10 years.

Note: Permission applies only to the entity from which the individual requested contact and for the duration and topic of that transaction

Sarah: So if any agents listening out there want to learn more about setting up an event, how can they reach out to you? 

Carla: Part of SMA’s support is we can walk you through a successful event! You can call me or email me.

Ending on a Positive Note:

Jessica: So Carla, since we have you, we always like to end each episode on a positive note. Do you have any uplifting stories you can share with us?

Carla shares her story about an event that seemed like it was going to fail, but ended up being successful and a great time!

Sarah: Alright everyone, that concludes today’s podcast episode. Lots of amazing insight from Carla about setting up events to generate leads!

Jessica: If you want to be featured on the podcast, visit www.seniormarketadvisors.com/podcast and click on the button that says “Share Your Story.” Want to learn more about Senior Market Advisors? Visit us online or give us a call at 844-334-6066.

Sarah: We appreciate you joining us this week on…

Jessica: Selling SMART

Sarah: with Senior Market Advisors!

How to Generate Leads: Partnering with Providers – Ep. 7

Episode 7 is all about how to generate leads by partnering with providers! Generating your own leads can seem like a daunting task; and once AEP ends, it can be difficult to make sales. We talk about some of the ways you can continue selling outside of Annual Enrollment like selling Medicare Supplement Plans and utilizing the Special Enrollment Period. Want more information? Read our blog at https://seniormarketadvisors.com/blog/how-to-sell-medicare-outside-of-aep/

Next, Jessica and Sarah go through the SMA Building Your Business video series, How to Partner with Dental Offices, to give you some tips on how to generate leads. This includes why you should partner with dental offices, how to make a good first impression, and crafting your pitch. If you’re thinking about partnering with a provider, but aren’t sure where to start, this episode will walk you through the process.

If you’d like to get free access to the entire Building Your Business video series plus all the included worksheets and leave-behinds, contract with Senior Market Advisors today at www.agentcontract.com. Want more information? Give us a call at 844-452-5020.
Finally, Sarah and Jessica talk about how to redefine the way you think about fear and that failure isn’t always a bad thing. Want to be featured on the podcast? Share your story with us at www.seniormarketadvisors.com/podcast.

Partnering with Providers – Ep. 7 Full Transcript

Sarah: Welcome to Episode 7 of Selling SMART with Sarah Smith….

Jessica: And Jessica Vara!

Sarah: In today’s episode… we’re going to go over how to sell Medicare outside of Annual Enrollment and talk about how to build your business by partnering with providers!    

Jessica: Yeah and we actually have our own video series that breaks down how to partner with different types of providers for those agents who are contracted with us which we will touch on that a little bit later! 

Disruptive Waves:

Sarah: Since it’s SEP which stands for Special Enrollment Period, we wanted to give you some tips on how to sell during this quieter season of the year. We know AEP is likely your busiest sales season, but if you’re not taking advantage of the other 311 days of the year, you’re missing out! There are two things we recommend to up your sales outside of Annual Enrollment. #1 is to sell Medicare Supplement Plans and #2 is to utilize the Special Enrollment Period. This way you continue selling all year long! 

Jessica: Let’s start with selling Medicare Supplement Plans. Did you know that only around 30% of all Medicare-eligibles are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan? That means there is 70% of those Medicare-eligibles that you could be selling Medicare Supplements to!! 

Sarah: And what’s special about Medicare Supplement Plans is that they can be sold year-round. It’s not like Medicare Advantage where there is a specific enrollment period. 

Jessica: Medicare Supplements are also standardized, unlike MA plans. There are 10 types and each plan is the same, regardless of what state you sell in!

Sarah: Not all beneficiaries would benefit most from a Medicare Supplement plan though. So make sure you assess their needs and make sure it’s the right fit. When you are selling Medicare Supplement plans, it’s important to discuss the beneficiary’s health, lifestyle, medical needs, and budget. The rates can change based on their zip code, age, gender, marital status, and tobacco use so make sure that it’s the right fit for them and their needs.

Jessica: Moving on to Special Enrollment. There are many individuals who are eligible for a Special Enrollment Period which means you can sell them Medicare Advantage and Part D plans outside of Annual Enrollment! 

Jessica: Most people who are eligible for a special enrollment period are dual-eligible which means they qualify for both Medicare AND Medicaid! These people also qualify for the Medicare Extra Help program which can help them with prescription drug costs.

Sarah: There are quite a few other instances that qualify beneficiaries for special enrollment periods though as well. Some of the most common qualifying events include relocating to a different service area, loss of current coverage, chance to get other coverage, or a plan contract change. This isn’t a complete list but if you want more information you can visit Medicare.gov!

And If you want more information on how to sell Medicare outside of AEP, you can read our blog on the SMA website. The link is provided in the description!

Jessica: There you have it! There are lots of ways you can sell to individuals outside AEP, so don’t get frustrated, Stay hungry! They are out there, you just need to find them! Which brings us to our next topic…. How to generate leads by partnering with providers!

All Aboard the Knowledge Train:

Sarah: We all know generating leads isn’t easy. It’s time-consuming and can be stressful. That’s why we want to fill you in on a tip for how to generate leads, no matter what time of year! And that’s by partnering with providers like dental offices, primary care providers and pharmacies. 

Jessica: We think this is so important that we actually offer an entire video series on this topic called Building Your Business to our contracted agents, free of charge. We break down how to partner with providers, step by step so if that’s something you’re interested in and you want to get contracted with SMA, you can visit www.agentcontract.com to start the process online!

SMA VALUE AD

Sarah: Alright so today we want to give you a little sneak peek of this video series, obviously we won’t be showing you any videos since, well, this is a podcast, but we will be discussing a few of the topics we cover in the series. The entire series includes Why Market to Providers, How to Locate Providers, How to create a good first impression, How to prepare your pitch, a video that you can present to the provider during your initial meeting, follow-up and leave behinds and then a few key takeaways.

Jessica: So today we will focus on dental offices. So, you may be wondering… why would partnering with a dental office help me generate leads? It’s simple! Relationships are the key to building your business and partnering with a provider means you can refer clients to one another. 

Sarah: Right so for example, let’s say the dentist has a patient who needs an expensive procedure, and that person doesn’t have a plan that covers that procedure. Or maybe they walk in and their plan doesn’t cover dental at all. Well the dentist would have to turn this person away because the patient wouldn’t be able to afford it, but if you have a relationship with that dentist, well shablam! Now they can refer that patient to you and you can help them enroll in a plan that covers the procedure they need. You make a sale, the dentist gains or retains the patient, and the patient gets the procedure covered!

Jessica: Exactly! And on the flip side, you probably enroll people all the time into plans that offer dental coverage. You can now refer those patients to see the dentist!

Sarah: Right, it’s just a really nice symbiotic relationship that works really well for lead generation. And everybody wins!

SMA VALUE AD

Jessica: So moving on to creating a good first impression… this is so important guys! Half the battle is getting the person you’re speaking with to like you and trust you. 

Sarah: And the key to getting someone to trust you is preparation. Make sure you research the dental office you’re planning to visit. Think of it like a job interview, that’s basically what it is. 

Jessica: Right, you wouldn’t go into an interview without dressing nicely, researching the person you’ll be meeting with and preparing your pitch. So this is no different. Go in with a plan and be confident!

Sarah: It’s also important to build rapport with the person at the front desk. It’s likely that the dentist won’t be the first person you come in contact with, many times it will be a receptionist or other office worker. This person is the gatekeeper so make sure you’re friendly and memorize a quick elevator pitch to show them the benefits of your partnership.

Jessica: We don’t want to dive too deep into your pitch but at a high-level, you’re really trying to show them your interest and discuss how the partnership would benefit both of you. You want to steer away from talking about yourself, you really want to focus on them and their needs. Your preparation is key so that you can answer any questions they may have. You should also be asking them questions to make sure that they are actually a good fit for you as well!

Sarah: Also fun fact for those of you who are already contracted with SMA, we have included multiple worksheets on SMA Storefront that can help you prepare your pitch for the meeting.

Jessica: Overall, you want to make sure this process is as easy for the provider as possible. Once you partner with a dental office and you build trust in the relationship, you won’t regret it! There are so many amazing opportunities to generate leads this way. 

Sarah: Lots of good information in this series guys. If you want to learn more on how to partner with providers, give us a call at 844-334-6066!

Ending on a Positive Note:

Sarah: So we at Senior Market Advisors are big on failure. And that may sound weird because we are ending on a positive note right? But we truly believe that if you don’t fail, you aren’t growing and you aren’t innovating. So let’s just talk about failure for a bit and how failure is not always a bad thing!

Jessica: True! Fear of failure can sometimes make people not try. And that’s really the worst thing you can do right?

Sarah: Yeah there’s a quote I really like. It’s “Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” I love that quote because it’s so true. That fear of failure can really hold you back but if you don’t try you’ll never know what it would be like to succeed. Sometimes it can be easy to get in your head because we all know that failure is a sucky feeling and we want to do whatever we can to NOT have that feeling. But failure it’s also a motivator. Think about all the times you lost at games when you’re playing a sport or failed a test. Did you just get sad and quit never play again? No, you probably trained harder to improve your skills or you studied harder for the next test. You never want to think about failure as some giant wall that’s keeping you from achieving your goals. No, you want to think of failure as just another stepping stone to a better version of you.

Jessica: Right… Whatever you want to say about failure.

Sarah: You’re never going to be perfect. You’re going to have terrible days as an agent where you don’t generate any leads, you don’t make any sales and maybe it just feels like you can’t do anything right. Everyone has been there! And it doesn’t mean you’re a bad agent. It just means you need to make a new plan, work harder, and start again fresh tomorrow. 

Jessica: Whatever you want to say.

Sarah: Alright everyone, that concludes today’s podcast episode. We hope you enjoyed learning a little bit more about how to generate leads by partnering with providers! It can be really helpful especially during SEP!

Jessica: If you want to be featured on the podcast, visit www.seniormarketadvisors.com/podcast and click on the button that says “Share Your Story.” Want to learn more about Senior Market Advisors? Visit us online or give us a call at 844-334-6066.

Sarah: We appreciate you joining us this week on Selling SMART 

Both: with Senior Market Advisors!