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Super Conference 2018: Inspiring Attendees To Ignite Growth
InsuranceNewsNet Publisher Paul Feldman opens Super Conference 2018.

How do you propel your practice to explosive growth? Those who attended the InsuranceNewsNet 2018 Super Conference came away with all the tools they need to ignite their business.

InsuranceNewsNet’s second annual Super Conference brought advisors to suburban Chicago to get the secrets of success from some of the biggest motivators.

Finding Retirement Alpha

“Your clients are retiring miserable,” said retirement coach Tom Hegna at the conference.

“Assets will make your clients miserable in retirement,” he said. “The only thing that would make them happy? A guaranteed income.”

Hegna built a career on crafting successful retirement plans. He described how to find that magic formula that allows clients to indulge in the retirement good life while setting aside enough income to carry them through.

Hint: annuities are a big part of Hegna’s plan.

After decades with major life insurance companies such as New York Life and MetLife, Hegna turned full time to speaking and writing about how to ensure fulfilling retirements. He has written several books, including Paychecks and Playchecks and Don’t Worry, Retire Happy!

Hegna’s approach is about bringing “retirement alpha” to clients. Alpha is a measurement of outperformance that the fund manager brings.

A 75-year-old couple can still find retirement alpha in the form of life insurance and annuities, Hegna explained. Investing in life insurance and annuities enables these retirees to spend their money without worrying about outliving their funds or being unable to leave a legacy for their children.

A Relentless Drive For Success

Grant Cardone does not lack energy.

And he does not want for success. Ask Cardone why he is successful — he owns about 5,000 apartments, has written seven books, and advises major companies such as Ford and Aflac on sales strategy — and he will say it is all about thinking big.

One of Cardone’s notable books is The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure.

In it, he lays out his ideas and principles for “extreme success.” Cardone has spent much of his life studying what super-successful people do to achieve that level of accomplishment.

Success doesn’t mean having money, Cardone said. Successful people seek freedom instead of money.

In addition, he said, successful people spend time connecting with others and focusing on marketing instead of sales.

“It’s easier to make $100 million than $1 million. It’s all about your target. If you aim low, you get low,” he said.

It’s All A Matter Of Trust

Markets run on trust and there’s a bit of a trust deficit in financial services.

That was the word from Stephen M.R. Covey, who spoke on the topic of trust and its importance in attracting and keeping clients.

Covey is the son of the legendary Stephen R. Covey, who wrote The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People, the groundbreaking book that became essential reading for anybody wanting a more productive life.

Stephen M.R. Covey became CEO of his father’s company, Covey Leadership Center, and he doubled its sales within three years. He then orchestrated the merger to create FranklinCovey.

There are a few ways Covey recommends establishing trust. For starters, show character and competence.

“The first step is to declare your intent. Tell them not only what you want to do, tell them why,” Covey explained.

“Always give the why behind the what. Sometimes people give the what but they often don’t give the why. The why gives meaning. The why gives context. The why can change everything. So give the why.”

From ‘Greenies’ To Sales Stars

Anyone can sell insurance, Patrick Bet-David said. He is out to prove it by creating a 500,000-strong sales force within 10 years. And most of them will have little experience selling insurance.

Bet-David shared his approach to selling at the Super Conference. Bet-David would rather work with a clean slate than deal with salespeople full of war stories from other jobs. He calls non-sales candidates “greenies.”

“I would much rather bring in greenies because I can direct them with the culture that we have and that gets them to move at the speed that we’re growing versus having any hiccups,” he said. “So I’m a fan of speed and efficiency. With greenies, we tend to work a lot faster than with people who are not greenies.”

Born in Iran, Bet-David served in the U.S. Army before starting a career in financial services one day before 9/11. He is a proud capitalist whose strategy includes turning people with no experience into successful agents.

“In our company, we’re 54 percent women,” he said. “It’s intentional. Women can challenge both men and women on a sales call. Men can only challenge men. Our No. 1 earner in our company is a woman. We’re 51 percent Hispanic or Latino.”

Finding Motivation, Deflecting Rejection

Every sales professional faces rejection. Dan Seidman teaches these professionals how to deflect it and turn it into success.

“How are we distinguishing ourselves?” Seidman asked during the opening session. “How are we getting appointments we’re not supposed to get?”

Seidman challenged attendees not to give up on buyers who are hiding. He described the time he called a prospect 47 times before she agreed to meet with him. Sometimes a little creativity can close a sale and match a reluctant consumer with a needed insurance product.

“If an alien came down and he was collecting specimens of great sales producers, would he pick you?” Seidman asked attendees.

Get ‘Scrappy’

Marketing maven Terri Sjodin is a big advocate for getting “scrappy” if that’s what it takes to find success.

In fact, she titled her recent book Scrappy: A Little Book About Choosing To Play Big. Sjodin is the principal and founder of Sjodin Communications, a sales training and consulting firm in Newport Beach, Calif.

“Most people are pretty happy, so why do they need to get scrappy? Some people get scrappy because they want to get a new client,” she said. “Sometimes they just want to earn the right to be heard. Sometimes they’re trying to get a promotion.

“Usually, people have had enough irritation to want to break out of where they were.”

“A scrappy strategy encompasses all of your efforts,” Sjodin explained. “That includes research, due diligence and sweat equity. It helps you to channel these efforts in the most productive directions, and it’s the tactical planning necessary to achieve a specific goal.”

If you can take that determination and effort and combine it with creative ideas, then you have something, she added.

Susan Rupe is managing editor for InsuranceNewsNet. She formerly served as communications director for an insurance agents' association and was an award-winning newspaper reporter and editor. Follow her on Twitter @INNsusan. Contact her at [email protected].

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