Words That Work Playbook

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1 MetLife DISABILITY INSURANCE Words That Work Playbook Language to drive your DI client discussions We can likely all agree on the importance of protecting your clients income in the event of a disability. So why aren t there more conversations taking place about income protection? Why don t clients have a better understanding of the value of disability insurance (DI)? And ultimately, how can we help producers have more conversations that drive DI sales? To help answer these questions, we conducted in-depth market research among consumers, producers and wholesalers to identify the words that work in stimulating more productive conversations about DI as a key part of your clients financial plans. What follows will illustrate how you can drive engagement and sales by making a few fundamental shifts in how you talk to your clients about DI. This playbook focuses on how to: Begin the conversation by identifying the clients most likely to be open to DI Shift the conversation to emphasize the right details in client-friendly language Sustain the conversation by neutralizing some of the barriers to sales

2 Begin the Conversation Successfully selling disability insurance involves first understanding what the product is, then developing a sales strategy to target the right clients and leading them to seeing DI as the solution to income protection. INCOME PROTECTION & DI: Disability insurance is designed to replace a portion of your clients monthly income if they are unable to work due to illness or injury. The monthly benefit from DI can help cover expenses, maintain your clients standard of living and provide financial stability until they return to work. Though clients may not think they ll ever suffer a disability, it s easy for them to see the importance of protecting their income just in case. THE IDEAL CLIENT People may not equate the term Disability Insurance, to protecting their income. But that s what it s there for. It s protecting your lifestyle. As a financial professional, many of your clients look to you for recommendations they may not have considered, including a plan to protect their income with disability insurance. Identifying those clients and working to have targeted conversations with them is crucial to your success. Our research highlighted specific characteristics that can be used to identify the right clients for DI either prospects or within your book of business: Non DI Seller Employed full time Ages Have children Household income of $75,000 or more Occupation groups include: Medical & dental professionals Business owners Grey & white collar professionals Corporate managers & executives Shift the Conversation The research showed that a positive, benefits-oriented approach to the disability insurance conversation resonates most strongly with clients. That approach involves making three fundamental shifts in how you talk to clients about DI. Protection against disability 1. Protection for income Though producers and clients agree that income protection is important, the idea of disability insurance can be difficult to convey. The name itself can often be an obstacle. It can be perceived as negative and clients don t necessarily make the connection to DI as a means to protect their income. Shifting the DI sales conversation to focus more on income insurance can help highlight the benefits instead of the risks. By focusing on income protection, DI can be positioned as the policy that protects everything else and helps your clients stay on track financially. I like the idea of income insurance. I depend on my income, and that s what I m looking to protect. Consumer, St. Louis

3 you say they think instead say Disability insurance is an important part of your financial plan. I already have insurance policies I don t need another one. Your income is the foundation of your entire financial plan. It s the thing that makes everything else possible. Think of disability insurance more as income protection something that keeps your larger financial plan intact, no matter what. Isolating the DI conversation 2. Connecting DI to a broader insurance conversation Without additional context, it s easy for clients to dismiss disability insurance as unnecessary. Connecting DI to the other forms of insurance clients already value can help to elevate DI to the perceived level of importance of life and group coverage as another pillar in a sound insurance plan. Although a common comparison to make in the sales conversation, connecting DI to auto/home coverage should be avoided. This comparison often gets rejected by clients because, unlike those policies, DI is optional. Making this comparison creates an obstacle for the seller and allows clients to quickly dismiss the conversation. CONNECTING TO LIFE INSURANCE: Many clients already understand the inherent value of life insurance and agree that producers should bring up DI after life insurance has been discussed, but as part of the same or similar conversation. However life insurance alone can leave the client partially unprotected. Showing DI as the solution to balance the income protection plan should they become unable to work due to illness or injury can help them understand its importance. I put a lot of stock in life insurance, but now I m thinking... I may really have to switch my focus so I m not just thinking about what happens when I m gone, but what happens when I m still here, but I can t work. Consumer, St. Louis you say they think instead say We need to think about more than just the investing basics. We also need to think about how to prepare for the unexpected so you won t be left scrambling. I already have life insurance I m covered. You ve already taken the important step of purchasing life insurance, so when you die, your family will be protected. Now let s talk about how we can protect your income if you become sick or injured and unable to work.

4 CONNECTING TO GROUP DI: Chances are many clients in your target audience likely have group disability coverage through their employer. However, many may not understand what their group coverage offers or how an individual policy is different. This misunderstanding can easily be turned into an opportunity for you to explain the details of the group policy to the client. Explaining the income gap that most group coverage leaves is one of the most important points of the DI conversation. Simply pointing out the shortcomings of group coverage can turn clients off and create an unnecessary stumbling block in the conversation. Clients don t want to be made to feel like they ve made a poor decision by having group coverage. A better approach would be to reframe individual DI as a complement to group coverage for clients who may need a little more protection. I like the idea of learning about the coverage I already have through work. To be honest, I don t really understand it. Consumer, Charlotte you say they think instead say Your employer coverage may not provide enough money to cover your monthly income. Your group policy typically only covers up to 60% of your salary, and it doesn t apply to incentives and bonuses. What do you have against group coverage? It s a start, isn t it? Disability coverage through work is often a great, cost-effective way to protect yourself against a disability. Individual disability insurance adds to that coverage in a number of ways Scare tactics and unrealistic promises 3. Stability Too often, today s disability insurance conversations are grounded in what clients see as scare tactics language that focuses on the dangers of not having DI. Clients are asked to imagine scenarios where they can t pay their mortgage, can no longer save for their children s education or have to tap into financial reserves to make ends meet. Conversely, clients often see overly aspirational language language that highlights protecting dreams and taking lofty vacations as out of place or inappropriate in the context of a disability. Using extreme language to sell DI only increases client suspicion, diminishes trust and creates an unnecessary stumbling block. Instead, the idea of stability offers a good balance. Stability often means different things to different clients, but it s something all clients will likely desire in the context of a disability. Instead of scare tactics, shift your DI conversations to focus more on the realistic benefits of DI providing stability and helping maintain your way of life. The reality is that your lifestyle is going to change if you become disabled, and you just want to know if you re going to be able to keep it stable, both in the short and long-term. Consumer, St. Louis

5 you say they think instead say What happens when your emergency funds run out? Have you thought about what might happen to your loved ones if you were sick or injured for a long period of time? When you re protecting your income with disability insurance, you re also protecting your dreams. You re trying to scare me into buying disability insurance (and it won t work). If I m disabled, my dreams will be the last thing on my mind. Disability insurance replaces a portion of your income which helps you minimize the disruptions to your daily life during a tough period and keep your long-term financial goals on track. Sustain the Conversation There are a few additional insights that can lead to more productive sales conversations about disability insurance. The power of affirmation A positive acknowledgment of the smart steps your client has already taken towards financial stability makes them more receptive to discuss the additional benefits DI can provide. Having group disability and/or life insurance, for example, are important first steps that should be acknowledged. Customization is key The subject of disability can be a sensitive and personal discussion so a one-size-fits-all approach will likely not work for most clients. Highlighting DI as a customizable solution empowers clients to make the policy their own. Realistic optimism You can earn credibility with clients by acknowledging the fact they may never need to use their DI coverage. However, in the event they do need it, the monthly benefit from DI can be crucial to maintaining your client s financial health. Provide insight Clients are inherently skeptical of sellers being too pushy. Overselling the importance of disability insurance can quickly turn them off. Your clients are looking for realistic insights over sales tactics. The most fruitful DI conversations are the ones that give information then lead the client to making their own decision. An effective client conversation puts the client in control by affirming their smart decision to protect their income, leads them through a positive conversation focused on the benefits of DI and ultimately empowers them to make their own decision.

6 Make Your Words Work It s important to recognize that even the best language can t overcome all potential objections or guarantee a disability insurance sale. However, shifting away from certain words in favor of more affirmative, relatable language has the potential to shift client perceptions of DI in a positive direction thereby eliminating some of those barriers to sales. Incorporating the disability insurance words that work into your sales conversations can help to build relationships and get to the next level of discussions. SHIFT AWAY FROM SHIFT TOWARD Will not/may not/cannot Scare tactics What happens to your family Raw statistics Cover up to 85% Comparisons to auto/home Negativity Making sacrifices Selling against group DI Depleting savings Impacts of no DI Bankruptcy Group DI only covers 60% Necessities becoming luxuries Being left scrambling Emergency funds running out Uncertain financial future Protecting your dreams Overly aspirational language One size fits all approach Focusing on the sale High pressure No DI sales strategy Overselling Income Protection Stability Ability Educate Security Complement to life insurance Positivity Affirmative Supplemental to group DI Minimize daily disruptions Maintain long-term goals Strengthen your financial security Tax-free benefits Portability Balance Just in case May not need Assurance Flexible Customizable Empower the client Realistic benefits Targeted sales strategies Leading For more information, contact us today. Disability insurance is issued by Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, New York, NY All policies, riders and provisions may not be available in all states, at all issue ages and to all occupational classes. Metropolitan Life Insurance Company 200 Park Avenue New York, NY metlife.com BDDI24288 L [0916] 2014 METLIFE, INC. PEANUTS 2014 Peanuts Worldwide

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