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The annual health benefit enrollment period is upon us. Between now and the end of November, many employees will be asked to enroll for 2016 benefits. Remarkably, this could be a boon time for producers offering individual disability insurance.

disability-insurance-salesA Council on Disability Awareness, CDA, report confirms that many workers decline disability coverage because they don’t know the cost and the benefit of having the coverage. Industry experts attribute that changes in health insurance and the ensuing decisions employees must make distract from other important benefit decisions. The result is 47 percent of employees do not enroll in employer offered disability coverage.

Many sales professionals attribute success in any market to identifying a need and filling it. The need to carry disability income insurance is clear. Follow these steps to more DI sales.

  • Teach the ABCs of DI. Offer free informational sessions to guide prospects through the benefit selection process at either group meetings or one-on-one appointments. Include an explanation of disability insurance and ask colleagues with expertise in other lines of insurance to participate. Post information about the sessions on your website and social media sites.

Consumers are often making important benefit decisions without the help of insurance professionals. As few as 38 percent of employees feel they understand their employer DI plan, yet, only 15 percent of employees ask their HR departments for more information about the benefits offered.

Start with basic information about the value disability insurance provides, using the term “income protection” rather than disability insurance. Disability insurance conjures ideas of injury or short term situations such as maternity leave.

Explain some of the differences between group coverage and individual disability insurance including policy and income definitions and taxation differences. Give some example scenarios and compare/contrast how group and individual coverage would apply in each situation.

  • Personalize the need. Carol Harnett, President of Council for Disability Awareness, suggests financial professionals talk about disability insurance through story telling. She cites studies confirming people respond better to a personalized story than they do to statistics and fear. Help clients understand how income protection insurance provides financial security. Paint the picture of recovering from an illness without financial stress and uncertainty.

Personalization works best in a one-on-one setting. Follow up your group sessions with a private meeting and individualize the disability story for the client. As you develop the story, subtlety include information to dispel the top three reasons consumers give for not purchasing disability insurance:

1.  They can’t afford it.

2.  They never thought about it.

3.  They don’t’ know enough about it.

Grab the opportunity to grow your disability practice now during the benefit enrollment period. DIS has several resources available to help you tell a better DI story including this first hand testimony and our popular Wealth Preservation Plan sales script. Call your DIS representative for a customized quote. Or, if you prefer the DIY approach, use our online DI quote service.