Ready or not, 2020 is just around the corner. Are you prepared for Medicare annual enrollment? The most successful agents have strategies in place to help navigate AEP with ease. These four tips below will ensure you can hit the ground running and make the most out of 2020’s Medicare AEP.
Four Steps for a Seamless AEP
1. Think like a Scout: Always Be Prepared.
For realtors, it’s location, location, location. For agents looking at AEP, it’s preparation, preparation, preparation. Agents should have all licensing and certifications complete before October 15th. From July to September, carriers and AHIP release their annual certification courses for selling Medicare Advantage and Part D plans, and between August and October, carriers will provide licensed agents details of next year’s plans.
Use this time to develop your game plan. Map out your sales strategy. Determine your key carriers. Decide which plans are going to be most attractive to your clients. Knowing these things ahead of time will help your plan reviews run smoothly once AEP hits.
2. Mind Your Time.
AEP only runs 54 days, so you need to make the most of it. Be ahead of the game by ensuring all your call lists and leads are in order before AEP. Need help? That’s why we’re here! Call us to craft the right plan for your business.
By researching and organizing ahead of time, you’ll be ready to sell, sell, sell come October 15th. As soon as October hits, start scheduling annual plan reviews with your clients. Have customers who may want to change plans? Be ready to talk them through it.
3. Consider the Customer.
While many agents are thinking about new customers, don’t forget the importance of existing ones. Make sure to reach out to all current clients – even those who won’t have any changes to their current plans. While the idea may sound daunting, you can simplify the process. Craft a standard letter to all existing clients informing them that you are actively reviewing their plans as soon as information becomes available, and will be in contact after October 1st to discuss any changes that could potentially affect current coverage. Let them know you’re happy to pre-schedule appointments during AEP to review any major life changes – such as new medication, a change in a primary care doctor, or even an upcoming change in residence.
And then be sure to follow up with your client once their plan goes into effect and make sure they have received their enrollment materials and understand the workings of their new plan. Going that extra mile will result in referrals as clients share your information with friends and loved ones.
4. Don’t Forget Cross-Selling.
There’s no reason to leave money on the table. Any chance you have to be in front of a client, use it to ask questions that could reveal additional coverage needs. Inquiring whether there is a history of cancer in the family could lead to the sales of a supplemental cancer policy. You’ll never know if you don’t ask!
Help your client secure their primary coverage first, but then be sure to schedule a follow-up meeting to ensure everything went smoothly with their enrollment, and then use the meeting to review any ancillary products that could provide your client with additional protection.