Today's Viewpoint: A MarshBerry Publication

Is Your Agency “In Motion” or Standing Still? Hard Market Growth Strategies for Insurance Agencies

Insurance agencies that are in motion are maximizing revenue, developing strong strategic plans, and using data to make more informed decisions. At the FirstChoice Annual Member Conference In Motion, members discussed the latest industry issues and trends, and ways to help their agencies thrive. 

As the insurance industry continues to navigate economic headwinds in challenging times, are you (or your agency) in motion or standing still? Recently, members of FirstChoice, a MarshBerry firm, met at In Motion, the FirstChoice Annual Member Conference, to learn how to accelerate growth and keep moving their agencies forward more effectively, even in this challenging market.

Over 280 insurance industry leaders and experts shared valuable industry insights and hard market growth strategies for three days in Atlanta, Georgia, through educational sessions, panel discussions, and workshops. The event included sneak peeks at the latest products, services, and technology and featured impactful breakout sessions, an all-day trade show, focused networking time, and idea sharing.

Transformative discussions helped members uncover efficiencies and new methodologies for driving success in a changing environment. Here are some of the highlights and key takeaways from this successful event.

Focus On What’s in Your Control

The biggest takeaway from In Motion was to recognize those things that are still within your control that you can do to help improve your business, despite a challenging insurance environment. Here are some key topics members learned more about:

  • Continuous education: Attending a future FirstChoice meeting, networking with peers at a professional event, or investing in a dedicated training program helps you feel more in control. One option is the FirstChoice Agency Accelerator program. This two-year program helps agencies accelerate growth through education, strategic planning, and peer advisory work.  
  • Perpetuation planning: FirstChoice President, Keith Captain, spoke about preparing for the future leadership of your agency. Even if you’re not close to retirement, perpetuation planning takes time, sometimes years, and should be a priority. Start by determining the goals for your agency, assessing your willingness to make tough decisions, and participating in strategic planning with your FirstChoice team. 
  • Producer compensation modeling: Evaluating and updating your current producer compensation model can give your agency a competitive edge. FirstChoice members have access to MarshBerry tools, such as Producer Stack Ranking and annual compensation studies, to help them better understand where their compensation models stand compared to industry averages. 
  • Talent attraction strategies: During the “Beat Your Competition to the Best Talent” session, Diane Wagner, FirstChoice Vice President of Education & Strategic Planning, and Brooke Lugonjic Liu, Senior Vice President of Growth Advisory, spoke about taking your talent search to the next level and effectively measuring results. Attendees learned about tools, technology, and motivational differences among generations and how to leverage those tools best to find top talent outside the insurance world. 
  • Incorporate Data: Panel experts discussed how using data and analytics for financial benchmarking can lead to more informed strategic decisions. Tools like MarshBerry’s Financial Snapshot can help you gather, organize, and consolidate your agency’s data, leading to better decisions. 

Condition Yourself for Change

Not only is the current environment challenging, but it is also changing – and some things may never return to “the way it was.” How can agencies embrace these changes not only to survive but also to thrive?

It starts with a commitment to growth, even in a hard market. You have the ability and support of an agency network to develop strategies that fit your business and your market.

Emerging technologies and artificial intelligence (AI) will continue to impact our industry. Staying on top of these evolving programs will be critical. Agencies need to start developing strategies immediately to take advantage of the uplift these new resources can bring to your agency now and in the future.

Lean On Your Network

Another important takeaway from this event was that it takes a village to be successful. Leaning on an agency network like FirstChoice can help insurance agency owners embrace challenging decision-making, develop a strategic plan, and most importantly, remain agile and prepared. This annual event offers solutions tailored to agencies of all sizes.

The topics presented at In Motion demonstrate that insurance professionals have a lot to tackle. Events like these are built to help agency owners feel more knowledgeable and are just one of the reasons FirstChoice was named the Top Agency Partner by Insurance Journal. FirstChoice members left the meeting with many actionable items to streamline internal processes and grow their agencies. Why not join them?

If you are a FirstChoice member and missed this year’s In Motion conference, save the date for In Motion 2024 on October 15-17, 2024, in Atlanta, Georgia.

Learn more about FirstChoice growth solutions if you are not already a member and are interested in the nation’s number-one agency partner.

Contact Diane Wagner
If you have questions about Today's ViewPoint, or would like to learn more about how MarshBerry can help your firm determine its path forward, please email or call Diane Wagner, Vice President, Education & Strategic Planning , at 704.831.8715.

MarshBerry continues to be the #1 sell side advisor in the industry (as ranked by S&P Global). If you’re considering selling your firm, we are the best choice to help you through the complicated process. If you don’t hire MarshBerry, hire a reputable advisor that can help you navigate one of the most important business decisions you will ever make. You will be much better off having an advisor in your corner that knows the industry than trying to do this on your own.