Buying Life Insurance: The Questions That Matter
Take a look at how sales and customer service representatives can offer valuable support.
Compared with other types of insurance, buying life insurance is unique in that it makes payments to beneficiaries, not the policyholder. After all, you’re purchasing something that will help protect the financial well-being of your loved ones after you’re gone. On any given day, Amica Life’s insurance specialists guide numerous individuals through the process of buying or updating their policies. If you listened in, you’d likely hear how they transform a routine conversation (premium rates, medical exams, etc.) into one that goes deeper into each person’s insurance needs. Then, they work toward a solution that gets at the heart of what’s driving them to secure life insurance.
It Starts with Self-Reflection
Reflecting on your priorities is a different way to start your life insurance research than plugging numbers into rate calculators for the lowest price, says Jane Flowers, Senior National Life Sales Representative at Amica Life. “A lot of [people] are doing research, but I don’t think it’s to the effect of, ‘Why should I have this coverage?’”
To help shift from what is often purely price-driven thinking, specialists like Flowers instead ask open-ended questions to uncover what’s important to the individual. “We’re not talking amount,” he says. “We’re talking, what are you protecting?”
Amica Life specialists understand that life insurance is a piece of something larger. Everyone’s circumstances vary, but common priorities exist across generations. Millennials and Gen Xers tend to share the same financial concerns: saving for retirement, saving for an emergency and paying their mortgage or rent, according to the 2017 Amica Life Financial Peace of Mind Survey.1
“As customer service representatives, our main concern is to educate our customers and make sure their current coverage meets their needs. We’re here for the customer, not our bottom line.” – Stephanie Simon, Senior Life Customer Service Representative at Amica Life
However, your stage in life may inform which life insurance product you choose. “A common question is, what happens to the term policy once it expires?” says Joe Johnson, Assistant Life Sales Supervisor at Amica Life. “We do like to stress a combination of both term and whole life insurance, especially when you have a young family and a mortgage.” While a term policy is effective when you have loved ones relying on you for a specific period of time, Johnson explains, a whole (or permanent) policy provides lifetime coverage.
As Life Changes, So Do Insurance Needs
A key advantage of life insurance is that as long as you pay your premiums, the benefit is guaranteed not to change. While this offers security, the need for regular coverage check-ins still exists as your personal circumstances evolve. And life changes that prompt a review aren’t always as obvious as a marriage or a new child: Sometimes a simple shift in income can cause you to reconsider your coverage, notes Stephanie Simon, Senior Life Customer Service Representative at Amica Life. “We work with a customer to determine if insurance needs have changed. We’re always ready to do a needs analysis – we’re here for the customer, not our bottom line.”
What Every Life Insurance Buyer Would Like
Ultimately, all a policyholder wants from life insurance is for it to pay out exactly how they intended: at the amount they set, to their chosen beneficiaries, as quickly as possible after they pass. But beyond the reassurance of credentials like an A+ (Superior) rating from AM Best,2 life insurance customers want to know their beneficiaries will be treated with care and compassion.
Christine Sampers, Assistant Life Customer Service Supervisor at Amica Life, points out that policyholders notice this personalized care when they call in. “When they do reach out to us, they’re surprised to get a live person pretty quickly,” Sampers says. “So I think that just proves to folks that we’re here for them.”
- 2017 Amica Life Financial Peace of Mind Study, 2017.
- AM Best Company. Jan. 24, 2020. A+ is the second highest of 15 possible ratings. For the latest rating, access ambest.com.
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