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March 06
How to Compete with Direct Writers

Several recent reports from McKinsey, A.M. Best, Nomura Equity, Gartner and others have reached a common conclusion: Auto insurance has become a commodity, and price is the only significant differentiator.

The Big “I” and Virtual University experts beg to differ. Exclusions or restrictions in various auto policies found in the marketplace today are not hypothetical—they’re very real. Consider the following:


  • Many auto policies exclude pizza or other delivery uses. Imagine how many pizza delivery drivers are on the road tonight without insurance. This exclusion could apply to all kinds of exposures, from delivering newspapers to selling Mary Kay cosmetics.
  • One policy excludes undisclosed household residents. What if a child moves back home unexpectedly and assumes that, like any other family member, they have coverage under their parents’ policy? How many consumers would think to notify their car insurance companies?
  • At least one insurer’s policy specifically excludes rental cars. People may rent cars on business, vacation, or while their car is in the shop.



These are just a few examples of the potentially catastrophic exclusions found in some auto policies that are both readily available and heavily advertised in today’s marketplace. We can think of more than a dozen more just off the top of our heads.

Would you like to know what they are? Would you like to know about similar differences when it comes to homeowners policies? Would you like some pointers on how to compete with direct sales insurers who replace the advice and advocacy of independent agents with clever marketing campaigns that declare that the only significant difference between policies or insurers is price, not coverage? Would you like to be able to tell a customer or prospect how they can save money without sacrificing critical coverages?


Registration is now open for a March 12 national webinar, which will answer all these questions. If you have questions about “How to Compete with Direct Writers in Personal Lines…Combating Low-Cost Advertising with Coverage and the Independent Agent Advantage,” email webinar staff.​

Want more? Additional upcoming webinars​ will cover how to calculate business income; demystifying business income coverage options and worksheets; and resolving coverage and claim disputes.  ​


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