Quotit Corporation is a leading Internet application service provider for the health insurance and employee benefits industry. Quotit Corporation's Internet software enables insurance organizations to increase productivity and reduce costs by directly connecting insurance companies, brokers and retail consumers with insurance rates and benefits on-line, in real time.
Quotit has established relationships with over 120 insurance carriers representing over 11,300 plans in the health, life, dental and vision insurance markets, including such names as: Aetna, United Healthcare, Health Net, WellPoint, Assurant Health, Humana, Celtic and independent licenses of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Quotit's database of carriers and plans extends to 50 states including the District of Columbia.
This spring, we interviewed long time Quotit customer Joe Maioriello. Joe explains how his business sense and use of Quotit have helped him build a health insurance agency from the domain name up over the past eight years.
Tell me a little about your agency and what insurance lines you market.
I sell health insurance, life insurance, disability, long-term, and annuity. I've been doing this for 33 years. I market the health insurance, both group and individual – mostly group – and that's how I get the other insurance sales.
How has your agency changed the way you do business in the last few years?
It became a lot of tougher. What do you do in a down economy? You work harder. You go back to the basics. That's how you got where you are – it works. It's an ever-changing business to begin with and now you have a bad economy.
I do all my renewals in-person. Everybody I talk to is a suspect. Then, if I'm lucky, they turn into a prospect and then a client. Anyone can sell insurance. The tough part is finding someone to buy it. Right now, you have to be proactive.
What types of traditional marketing do you use?
I do some advertising in the newspaper and Yellow Pages. I do some online advertising and I use a money-mailer. The money-mailer is amazing. With the Web site address right on the back, people go right to the site and buy online. Right now, that probably is the most effect marketing tool we use, but, in today's market, you have to use everything. In this ever-changing economy, you have to keep evolving. Word of mouth is still huge – and it works.
What expectations do you have when running a marketing campaign?
You never know, but you expect to have a 2 percent response rate.
How do you provide proposals for customers?
I download the proposal, make an appointment, and then go see them. The beauty of having a Web site, though, is that I can make all the changes on my laptop with my client right there. I can run proposals right there with my clients.
What challenges did your agency face during this time?
What led you to look for other ways to market and sell insurance?
Again, it's survival. When you lose literally 35 percent of your income in one year, it's a hard challenge. To even get in (to see a possible client), you somehow, someway have to get to the right person – the one making the decisions. Before I make a presentation, I have a conversation with the person I'm speaking with and find out who's going to make the decision and then I focus on that person.
How has Quotit helped your agency?
Quotit has helped me in many ways. The number one thing it has given me is the ability to provide a quote on the spot. In today's world, people want to know what's on your Web site, and having a Web site gives a lot more flexibility to me and my clients.
How has your business benefited from Quotit's proposal system?
The efficiency of the proposal system is amazing. I can get quotes whenever I want, wherever I want, and can literally hand a quote to someone in minutes.
How did your agency's client and sales management change with this proposal system?
We have freed up time to do other things. It benefited us more than anything with its ease-of-use, not having to go through a third party for quotes, and having information in seconds. The ease-of-use is amazing. I've looked at other quoting systems and there's no comparison. If you need to call, you can talk to someone today, not tomorrow.
What impact has been made by taking your business online and creating your agency's website?
More than anything, the main benefit of having the site, is being able to be where I need to be at anytime. I don't have to say I'll have to get back to someone. I can get it right then and there. You're closing ratio definitely goes up when you're using a quoting engine. Everyone wants knowledge and information now. If you don't have a quoting system today, you're living in the Dark Ages.
What percentage of your business now comes from online?
Somewhere in the 7 percent range.
Can you go over how your agency manages visitors that go through your site?
We do it with an e-mail back to them, asking them for more information. I leave my own cell phone number on there, too. We follow-up at least 5 times. There's also an auto responder feature you can use through Quotit that's even easier.
What is the biggest value added by offering online proposals to customers?
It's instant. You can literally get a quote to someone within 10 minutes. They can apply online for an individual policy – not with all the carriers, but most.
What is the biggest factor that has made your agency more effective since working with Quotit?
It's layered. Now you have the ability to get a hold of somebody through e-mail and get quotes out to them quickly. It's nothing more than a system that makes your life and their life easier. You can do it all with a few clicks of the mouse, and then you're done.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I work out a lot. I'm training for a triathlon. I've been running many triathlons and I'm training for one in June in San Diego.
Where do you see your agency in the next 5 years?
Coming back real strong. I think this economy is going to turn. I don't see a big turnaround until 2012. I think you just have to put your nose to the grindstone. It's a matter of not losing site of who you are and where you want to be. It's a matter of showing by example. You have to build a business when it starts to come down. It's not coming down because I'm losing business, its coming down because things are changing.
In your opinion, will online technology play a role in your agency's success in the future?
Yeah, it will, of course. It will play a role in the fact that it will be ever-changing.