Here we go again, planning for the upcoming selling season. Every year it seems to approach more quickly than the year before. Are you ready? If the answer is no, or you are not sure, here are a few critical items to consider as you create your 2017 Annual Election Period (AEP) strategy:
- Market Analysis — What worked during AEP 2016? This is the time to reflect on strategies which helped and/or hindered your success from the previous year. While it’s fresh in your mind, create a market analysis to review all the components of your sales process. From material distribution to product design, it’s important to understand what components of your strategy worked and what needs to be adjusted.
- Channel Mix — Do you have the right mix of agents to represent your plan? It’s important to evaluate the effectiveness of both your internal and external sales forces. The industry is moving toward a more diverse distribution channel. The need for internal and external field agents, coupled with telesales, helps maximize your footprint and reach all corners of your market.
- Seminar Plan Development — Did the materials you provided keep your agents compliant during their presentations? CMS secret shoppers are out in full force, and having the right tools for your agents will be imperative to high Star Ratings. In addition, baby boomers are also forcing us to rethink how we present products to Medicare beneficiaries. With the growth of internet shopping, online enrollment presentation opportunities must be included as a part of your strategy.
- Marketing — Did your direct mail make the phones ring, or did your marketing miss the mark? How you implement your marketing strategy impacts lead flow, brand awareness, and enrollment. Successful marketing programs deploy a multi-touch communication strategy which blends education, lead generation, and conversation tactics to maximize new member acquisition.
- Sales Training — Was your sales force ready to sell your plan? Sales training is a critical part of plan and agent success. Create a curriculum which encompasses sales and product training, time management, Medicare basics, and compliance. Don’t forget to teach them about member retentionâ€•it’s hard enough to acquire new members, so you also need to know how to retain them. Enable your agents to start the season with all the knowledge needed to make that sale and keep that new member on the books.
With the narrowed time frame for AEP, your sales strategy must continually change to adjust to the Medicare climate. What worked last year may not work this year. Don’t delay, the time is nowâ€•start planning for your success today!
For more information, please contact Carrie Barker-Settles at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gorman Health Group’s marketing experts have developed strategic plans for hundreds of Medicare Advantage Plans, Prescription Drug Plans, Special Needs Plans and Exchange participants. We will work with you to understand your market, mining demographic data for opportunity and finding the gaps in the competitive field into which your plan can fit. Visit our website to learn more >>
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