At the annual issues briefing yesterday during the 2018 Big “I" Legislative Conference, Vaughn Graham, Big “I" chairman, presented two awards to recognize state associations that have gone above and beyond in their membership initiatives.
The Big “I" created the Big “I" Membership Growth Award in 2017 to recognize the state association that gained the highest percentage of net new members in the previous year. The second-ever recipient is the Independent Insurance Agents of Arkansas (IIAA) for increasing membership by 6% in 2017.
Last year, IIAA leveraged company field reps for member referrals and reached out to direct writers in the state who lost markets and wanted to become independent agents. In addition, five out of six of the association's leadership roles are occupied by young agents who have helped encourage membership growth.
The Big “I" Membership Champion Award, meanwhile, recognizes a state association for exemplary membership recruitment and retention initiatives. The 2017 recipient is the Independent Insurance Agents of North Carolina (IIANC) for renewing 98% of members and adding 51 in 2017.
IIANC embraces the philosophy that membership is everyone's job. The association is seeing huge growth in conferences—once an agent attends, they tend to stay loyal.
“It's important to recognize the reason why the Big 'I' exists, and that's you—our members," Graham said before presenting the awards. “Member recruitment continues to be a big focus for the association."