Abram Interstate Insurance Services, Inc., CMGA

Helping Independent Insurance Agents Since 1996

How to Approach Small Business Owners | Tips for Insurance Agents

Published on June 8, 2016

Small businesses are the bread and butter of our commercial lines products we have available for Insurance Agents like yourself.

And many of you are also small business owners, so you understand a lot of what it is your prospective clients face if they are also small business owners.

You’ll also know that small businesses can be hard to sell to. They’re always busy,  the owners or trigger-pullers are often on the go, and many times, they’ll be hard to even catch face to face.

As someone who served as an executive assistant to several company heads for many years, I can tell you that good gate-keepers will try to separate those who really know what they’re talking about from those who are trying to sell something that’s either A) unnecessary or B) that the seller doesn’t understand completely. And they’ll do this before you ever get face time with the decision maker for the business.

So, here are some tips for you from Broker’s Service Marketing Group to help you in your endeavors to provide the necessary Small Business Insurance to local business owners like yourself:

Small business owners respond well to an approach that includes educational information and planning for their future success. They feel their business is unique. If you can teach them something new, they will be more open to meeting with and listening to you.

Do your research:  

  • Know the owner’s name and what their business does.
  • Factfind about the business before contacting the owner.
  • Find industry-related issues they might be facing – present how you can help.

Provide educational value:

  • Use stories and testimonials about helping others in similar situations.
  • Use a product example that helps the owner see a need for their business.
  • Mention that agents are also local business owners.
  • Find a problem you can solve and present it to them.
  • Stay away from telling them you can save them money, they are interested in quality service.
  • Suggest issues that could negatively affect their business.
  • Be prepared to leave something behind and schedule an appointment if the owner isn’t available.
  • Find an immediate need:
    • Bring something to make the business better – knowledge, education, updates on laws, etc.
    • Customize your advice around past needs, budget, future plans and the small business industry.
  • Multiple touches help get you remembered:
    • Direct mail, call, email, etc.
    • Brand yourself and get your name in front of owners.

Relate on a personal level:

  • “What keeps you up at night?”
  • Don’t discount the gatekeeper:
    • They can be your advocate. Explain to them what you can do for the owner and try to schedule an appointment.
  • Don’t focus on you and what you can offer – focus on them and their needs during the first contact.

If you can get them to view you and your insurance agency as a partner who can consult them on their business needs, identify gaps in their current coverage and provide educational tools for solving business issues, you’ll be well on your way to a new client. Even if they’re already content with where they’re at, you’ll create a position for yourself as a resource for them for the future if they’re ever looking to make a change in their business coverage.

And we at Abram Interstate are here to help you place their small business risks with our many quality  commercial lines products.

You can see our many markets and QUOTE ONLINE HERE, or chat with us online HERE now for any questions you have, including if you’re looking for a market you don’t see listed on our page.

We’re here to help you help your customer.


Abram Interstate Insurance Services, Inc. is a California wholesale insurance broker (CMGA) that has licensing and expertise to place business in both admitted and non-admitted markets for personal lines insurance and commercial lines insurance in California and surrounding areas.

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