Aligning your agency with the right network can pay dividends for years to come. Here are the questions to ask when considering whether it’s the right strategy for your business.
If you’re an insurance agency principal, you likely have some questions about how joining an agency network can improve your bottom line, and whether it’s truly the right move for you. Joining an agency network is an investment in your business, so it’s important to carefully consider which group will give you the best return on that investment.
Agency networks vary in terms of what they offer their members; some limit their offerings to profit-sharing agreements and market access, while some deliver far more in terms of practical, valuable services that can help your agency in a variety of ways.
If you’re looking for offerings that extend beyond those of most agency networks — with no entrance or exit fees — then Renaissance is equipped to become your trusted partner.
Let’s address some of the most common questions about how joining an agency network like Renaissance Alliance can improve your bottom line.
Will becoming a member help in managing my staffing expenses?
The first thing agency principals need to know is that Renaissance member agencies remain independent. All your hiring and staffing decisions remain with you, as they should.
That said, there are ways in which being a member can help you in this area.
Most agency owners believe that you need to hire more staff in order to grow, with the knowledge that the process of hiring new people – especially CSRs – can be time-consuming and expensive.
Joining Renaissance allows you to grow your agency without hiring, which helps you save money on payroll. Our members are able to outsource non-revenue-generating operational activities like billing, bookkeeping, placement, duplicate entry, marketing services and other functions.
More than 90 staff members at Renaissance help our member agencies free up valuable time to focus on engaging and advising your customers. After all, it’s your advice and guidance that your customers want and need most.
When your staff can focus on what matters most – providing great service to clients and selling more policies – without wasting time on tasks that can be automated or outsourced, you can maximize agency growth without requiring more employees to do it.
Download our free e-book here: The Independent Agent’s Playbook for Success – How to Solve Your Agency’s Five Biggest Challenges
How much enhanced compensation will I receive?
Many agency networks concentrate mainly on profit sharing. Renaissance offers our members the advantages of profit sharing as well as fixed overrides, growth bonuses and other financial incentives.
Our experienced, in-house team continues to build and maintain strong relationships with insurers and negotiates the best compensation possible for our member agents. Renaissance achieves this in part by demonstrating the value of agency growth to insurance companies: We’re able to secure greater compensation because our members continue to organically grow, which means more business placed with our partner carriers.
Renaissance members enjoy full transparency in this regard by being provided easy access to all of our carrier terms (which can be accessed on demand) and the benefits being paid to our member agencies. With our monthly updates and RevenueTrak dashboard, daily reporting tools, and services like Arno (our mobile app), our members have immediate access to information about their enhanced compensation, so they can measure performance and view improvement indicators.
While no one can predict profit sharing and compensation perfectly, having a fully transparent partner like Renaissance brings you greater peace of mind.
Will the network’s loss ratio affect my results?
As we do our due diligence with all member applications, Renaissance includes only successful agencies with profitable books of business. As a result, our loss ratio is kept consistently solid.
How will being a member allow me to grow revenue?
New members of Renaissance Alliance experience an average of 15% in premium growth during their first year. Our members achieve this through multiple ways:
Agency Growth Partners work to identify & achieve your goals
Members are assigned a dedicated Agency Growth Partner (AGP) who acts as an extension of your team. Your AGP knows how to take advantage of Renaissance’s full range of services to power your agency’s key growth levers:
- Account rounding
- Close ratio
- Lead generation
- Carrier optimization
Additionally, our AGPs serve to help you to create a customized strategy to drive and maximize your agency’s revenue.
“Our Agency Growth Partners are 100% focused on the premium and revenue growth of our members, continuously working with them to focus, refine, and accelerate agency performance and surface new revenue opportunities. They serve as trusted advisors to our member principals on matters that are vitally important to the long-term future of their agencies.” – Robert Bondi, President & Chief Operating Officer, Renaissance Alliance
Helpful Technology & Analytics empower your agency
Renaissance’s full-time staff of technology professionals continually develops new, intuitive tools to provide better insights into your business. Put simply, we analyze your data to unlock new revenue opportunities. Some of the tools we currently offer include:
- Dashboards: access to an easy-to-follow dashboard displaying unique agency metrics;
- Arno: a member-exclusive mobile app that helps agency principals quickly find and flag opportunities for revenue growth, policy renewals, and goal setting and tracking;
- Portico: a submission system that streamlines the application process and incorporates a comparative rater for small commercial business.
“Arno makes my agency money. I noticed a policy cancelled for non-payment as it showed up as a lost account in Arno. I informed the CSR who called the client and got the policy reinstated. Even better: the CSR was able to cross-sell home. It was a double win! Without Arno we would have lost the client.” – Christopher R. Russo Jr., President and CEO, Russo Insurance Agency Inc., Medway, MA
Expanded Market Access provides more choices & premium
Access to more insurance markets allows agencies of all sizes to provide more options and the best coverage possible to their customers at competitive rates. As principals know, increased market access means more policies can be placed for more clients.
Renaissance members have access to 40+ standard carriers and over 100 markets. This group contains a selection of companies we have strategically selected as our core partners to ensure the best opportunities for members.
“Providing our member agencies access to more markets is one of our key value propositions, empowering them both to sell more and direct their premium to our core partners to maximize their revenue. A broader selection of markets means more choices for the client, increased satisfaction in customer service, and more premium for our members.” – Bill LaGram, Senior Vice President, Carrier Relationships, Renaissance Alliance
Agency Marketing tools help elevate your profile
Since branding and digital presence for insurance agencies are of utmost importance in this digital age, Renaissance offers tools and services to help. These include:
- Maestro: Our powerful e-mail marketing tool leverages your agency’s data and enables cross-selling campaigns to be sent on a recurring basis. These automatic customer e-mail campaigns help increase retention and create opportunities to increase policy count among your clients.
- Website development: We work with trusted vendors to design and build custom, affordable websites for our agency members. A dedicated project manager serves as your point person for all website creative services.
- Social media: Renaissance provides reader-friendly content – such as blogs about seasonal safety and other customer-centric insurance topics – that our members can share on social media to drive traffic to their websites. We’ll teach you how to maximize your use of various social media platforms, regardless of your skill level.
“Marketing an agency is a full-time job for which most agents don’t hire. Our platform empowers agency principals to concentrate on selling, while our team handles the vital work of communicating with their customers and raising the agency’s profile.” – Will Shannon, Marketing Project Manager, Renaissance Alliance
Will I receive member discounts?
Renaissance Alliance offers a variety of discounted services to our member agencies, and we continuously secure discounts for new services for members as well.
Examples of discounts currently offered to members include technology services like agency management systems, outsourcing services to process business, agency E&O insurance, loss runs, consulting services, web development, graphic design and more. Additionally, value-added services such as training and help-desk technology support are included in your membership beneﬁts.
The Bottom Line
Renaissance is different from other agency networks because we care about growing your premium as well as the overall valuation of your agency. We’re much more than a commission club; we’re a true partner in your agency’s growth.