Life Insurance: Let’s sell Value, then Products

I love the Brand Management guys, though they could be a serious pain in the neck at times.

I love them for their choice of words, and their inquisitiveness.

Each time we talk about any life insurance product, I can almost predict the question that my Brand Management colleague would ask: “What’s the value proposition of this product?”

He’s right.

That’s actually the right question that a life insurance practitioner should ask before throwing any product into the market.

But how often do we do that?

One of my earlier posts took a look at “Why insurance is sold and not bought.” This very post actually generated a debate on LinkedIn and you can still add your voice to it.

The point is this: If truly life insurance is sold and not bought, how come it is so difficult for us to convince many people to buy?

I don’t know all the reasons, but I know one.

One of our problems, to my mind, is that we tend to sell products to people as against value.

In any sales transaction, the prospect does not care so much about what your product is. He doesn’t want to know what you know about your product. The only question that rings in his mind is: “Of what use will this product be to me?”

If we can successfully answer that singular question as life insurance salespeople, then the sale is almost guaranteed.

It’s all about the needs of the prospect, not our products!

No doubt, product and value go hand in hand. Your product is meant to offer some value to the prospect. If he fails to see any value in your product, he will surely not put his money into it.

Unfortunately, many of us place more emphasis on our products than the actual needs of the customer. This then prevents us from offering the most suitable product to meet those needs.

Just watch a typical life insurance salesman in Nigeria make an approach. He starts by displaying four or five different product flyers and expects you to choose one. Little wonder why many people think that insurance is gambling.

As life insurance practitioners, it is our role to sit down, take a look at each of our company products, and ask ourselves: “What is the value proposition of this product?” If it becomes difficult to identify the value proposition of any of the products within a few minutes, such product should immediately find its way into the trash bin.

I am not unmindful of how difficult it could be to convince a prospect to buy a product as intangible as life insurance. In a way, that difficulty equally offers us the opportunity to appeal to the prospect’s emotions. And life insurance is a business of emotion.

With life insurance sales, emotion comes first, and logic follows. However logical your product may sound, if the emotion is not strong enough for the prospect to buy, there is no amount of oration that can convince him.

With emotion, you can easily project the value of your product to the client.

With value, he can logically identify with your product.

This simple fact gave birth to Islamic Insurance (Takaful).

It also brought about funeral expenses cover in many parts of Africa.

It’s all about value proposition.

And this has to do with emotion (or passion, if you like).

So, in summary, we will do well to sell value to the people out there instead of focusing too much attention on products. By doing this, we will avoid the mistake of forcing products down the throat of our prospects.