According to recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Texas has the most people without health insurance in the nation. Maybe you’re currently selling Medicare, Life, or Supplemental Health products and you’ve stayed away from the ACA because it seems unstable or confusing.
Your clients need help!
It’s likely that in your current book of business you already have clients who could greatly benefit from ACA coverage, and even if they don’t directly need it they will have family and friends who do. A lot of people don’t know they could qualify for subsidies that bring their rates down to a very reasonable level. There is so much need, and there are so many options. There is no reason why you can’t help someone. Healthcare.gov is pretty confusing for the majority of people, so there is definitely a need for independent agents to sit down and guide clients through their coverage options and the enrollment process.
Current state of the ACA
Right now there is more stability in the marketplace than ever before. Long gone are the days of big rate increases and low commissions. In fact, the opposite has occurred. As carriers continue expanding their networks they are becoming more competitive. This is good news for everyone! As they compete with each other, the rates will go down for your clients while your commissions increase. There are also new benefits being released for employers in 2020 (more details to come). The ACA isn’t going anywhere. It is going to change and look different over time, but it will never go back to the way it was. This is what we have, and even though it isn’t what everyone wants, it’s still coverage.
How do I start selling ACA plans?
If you’re brand new to the ACA, you really need to do your certification. This is a CMS requirement for writing On-Exchange plans, and even if you only write Off-Exchange it is still recommended that you get certified. Why? If you try to avoid certifications, you will be completely confused about how the ACA works and your clients will not get the expert guidance that they need. If you want to do what’s best for your clients, then it is recommended for you to have both On-Exchange and Off-Exchange plans in your portfolio. While certifying, take the time to complete your appointments with the carriers. That way, you’ll be ready to sell as soon as your certification and contracts are completed.
ACA Marketing Strategy
While there are many different avenues for marketing your business, we recommend four key strategies for success:
1. Free leads from Healthcare.gov
Help On Demand harnesses the speed of today’s mobile technology to quickly connect consumers with Marketplace-registered agents and brokers. Consumers can request immediate assistance by selecting the Help On Demand link on HealthCare.gov. After the consumer enters his or her contact information, Help On Demand matches the consumer with an agent or broker who is available, speaks the consumer’s language, and is licensed in the consumer’s state. If more than one agent or broker meets these criteria, Help On Demand directs the referral to the agent or broker who is geographically closest to the consumer. That agent or broker receives a notification from Help On Demand via email, text, and/or app notification, and has 15 minutes to accept or reject the referral before it moves to the next agent or broker in the queue.
2. Work through your current book of business
Find out if your clients need coverage or if they know someone who does, and above all continue to build healthy relationships with them. Before you know it, the referrals will be keeping you busy.
3. Grow your social media presence
If you aren’t currently on social media, then you need to get with the program! Not only can you post content and grow your audience for free, but you can also utilize paid advertisements promoting your services to people in your area.
4. Get involved in your community.
Whether you’re involved with community groups, church programs, school boards, etc., don’t be afraid to give people your elevator pitch. Many agents have success by going to places like food banks and helping people of lower income get coverage for little to no cost.
What are you waiting for?
Now is the time to get involved with the ACA, and we are here to help! Visit our website for more information on how The Brokerage can help you grow your business.
Gillan Boyer | Digital Marketing Director