You’ve worked long and hard to build your brand and company image. You’ve also worked long and hard to finally merge your insurance agency with another. You’ve had no shortage of difficulties going through this process. Don’t let that hard work go to waste by allowing your brand to disappear throughout the course of change. Bring everyone together to review your processes and keep them on the same page to make sure they’re all following them.
Create a Combined Vision & Mission Statement
No, not just a piece of paper you paid someone else to come up with. Sit down with both agencies management teams to figure out what both sides stand for, and create a combined mission statement together. How do you want customers to view your company? What about employees? Chances are, you already have a good idea of those answers. Problem is, it doesn’t matter unless everyone is on board and upholding your ideals. That’s why it’s important to figure out everyone’s views and find a way to incorporate them into one combined statement. If your management team was a part of the process, they will tend to want to act to see it through.
Review Your Sales Documents and Copy
Are you using your own sales documents from your agency before the merger? Is everyone else? There’s a possibility someone (or a few someone’s) didn’t get the memo to use the new documents you provided. Of the ones who do adopt your process, if the new employees acquired in the merger are forced to use your documents and strategies, they may not be happy with it. During meetings and Q&A sessions, ask them how they feel about it. If you get them involved in the process, perhaps you can make a few tweaks. It may make the document better, and it will certainly make employees happier, and therefore more efficient. A little empathy and some action can go a long way.
Use Surveys to Determine Customer Happiness
A study by the Detroit Center for Banking Solutions found that 36% of customers who switched accounts after a merger did so for emotional reasons. Thus customer emotions, like happiness with your brand, can be a significant measure of how likely they are to switch to another agency. Create a customer satisfaction survey asking your clients questions about their feelings toward your new company and brand. Then use the results to create meaningful changes in your brand and increase client retention rates. By showing your clients their opinion matters, you’re sure to grow.
Handling an insurance agency merger, and furthermore keeping a brand in tact afterwards, is very difficult. Use the strategies outlined about to review your brand’s health and customer satisfaction to make the process much smoother. Ensure employees are using the strategies and working towards a common goal by involving them in the creative process. Make management as easy and painless as possible to ensure a healthy merger.