Did you know Algren Associates has a trick up our sleeve? It’s our Insurance Marketing Organization (IMO) – LifeMark Partners. Whether or not you have heard of them, they impact our business profoundly which, in turn, impacts your business profoundly.
While IMOs serve many purposes and function in different ways, it is easiest to think of them as associations. Like any good association a good IMO will offer a variety of services to its Brokerage General Agency (BGA) members through their collective size. This can include relationships with select carriers to gain access to top compensation levels and dedicated New Business and Service teams. It will also include access to proprietary software(s), marketing materials, training events, and more.
How does this impact your business?
- Without the top compensation level, a BGA (such as Algren) would not have the ability to pay our brokers competitive overrides and maintain a working revenue margin.
- Dedicated New Business teams means that our case managers and underwriters at the carriers have experience and are regularly assessed by the IMO. This does not mean that every case will go through smoothly, but we generally work with team members that have exuded competency in their work.
- Since an IMO is comprised of many agencies, there are times that LifeMark Partners does not have a relationship with a carrier and neither does one of its BGAs. However, another BGA under LifeMark’s umbrella usually will have a relationship with that carrier. Our sister agencies come to us for advice on New York business all the time. Sometimes they will flat out have us write a case because they don’t want to deal with NY. So too can we go to them for cases where we may not have the right solution for your clients.
- IMOs can be involved with lobbying groups at the state and federal levels. If there is something that LifeMark does not like, the AALU and NAIFA are aware of it.
- Education & Software that LifeMark provides Algren gives us the ability to have hundreds of advanced marketing materials on hand, benchmark hundreds of products from over thirty carriers, and more. This helps us to make sure you are showing the best possible concept and illustration to your clients. This is especially important for times when you are competing for business.
- Underwriting Resources – from reinsurance manuals to access to a medical doctor – keep our new business staff well informed of how to best categorize risks and also give us the leverage to argue decisions that seem unreasonable.
In my humble opinion (IMHO), IMOs should be one of the biggest factors in which BGA an advisor should work with. Thankfully, at Algren Associates, we work with LifeMark Parnters, one of the best!