Let’s be real, not every insurance company is the best available—that’s how business in a capitalist economy works. Captive agents will lose a potential client’s business if they find a better or similar insurance for a lower price. Since a captive agent can only present a limited number of policies, clients will be unaware if they are receiving the best option for their situation.
On the other hand, independent agents are able to keep the client’s business by simply offering the best product. Captive agents are tied to a significantly smaller list of policies offered by the company they represent, whereas independent agents are tied to their client with countless policy options. Independent agents represent their clients, not a customer, and can offer their clients the best options.
Some of the pros
There are some pros to being a captive agent, but not nearly as many as there are for an independent agent.
To start, it’s a great way for young insurance agents to get their feet wet. This is because parent companies will provide their agents with resources, guidance, leads and prospects to help new agents gain experience and hit the ground running.
Captive agents may have a more stable income, but the income is usually less than that of an independent agent. But stability doesn’t mean minimal. A captive agent might make a stable $4,000 a month, where a successful independent agent’s monthly income may range from $7,000 on a good month and $5,000 on a bad one.
But there are more pros than cons
Captive and independent agents are sort of the opposite of each other. Both are in the same industry and are affected by the same legislation, but that’s about it. What is usually a pro for an independent agent is a con for a captive agent. But independent agents certainly have more benefits than their captive counterparts.
Independent agents at MIAA have access to over 30 carriers and their policies. Access to these many carriers allows them to quickly present multiple policy options to clients. Independent agents increase their chances of finding the right policy while the client receives the correct policy for their situation. The process saves time for the client since they will not have to shop around and meet with multiple insurance companies.
You truly become instantly big when you become an independent agent and join an alliance such as MIAA. Independent agents gain instant access to multiple carriers, along with each carrier’s policies and markets. A captive agent may have more stability, but an independent agent has ample opportunity to succeed.
Independent agents run their own practice
While this comes with a cost, independent agents will reap the benefits. They have the opportunity to be their own boss while maintaining access to multiple policies and carriers by joining MIAA.
Independent agents benefit from the marketing of each company they have access too
Independent agents benefit from their carriers’ advertising, even if the agent has access to the carrier’s competitors. For instance, MIAA agents benefit from Company A’s advertising, even though they also sell Company B’s policies as well. Maybe Company A’s advertising caught the eye of a potential client and they reach out to the independent agent. The independent agent can give that client Company A’s policy as they wish, or find a policy with another carrier more beneficial to the client. The agent makes commissions of the policy while the client gets the best policy option for their individual needs.
Making the jump from a captive agent to an independent agent is a huge, intimidating change. But you can do it! MIAA offers members with national carrier access, training and continued education, marketing resources and higher commissions, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Contact MIAA and become instantly big.