min read
Nov 14

‍Insurance Agents: Pioneers in the AI Revolution

Jon Corrin
Chief Executive Officer

Insurance Agents: Pioneers in the AI Revolution

I was recently chatting with my co-founder’s dad at ITC-Las Vegas and he was reminiscing about the “technology” in the early days at his insurance agency back in the ‘90s. Back then, everyone was still mailing carbon paper to get insurance quotes and the latest tech innovation was being able to send them via the fax machine - an innovation that was already almost 30 years old at the time. He laughed about how he thought fax machines would never work and how much he complained about the issues they had.

Insurance agents have weathered many waves of technological innovations over the past several decades. It seems like every five years, something new emerges that the industry claims will replace agents, only to be followed shortly by the realization that agents are here to stay. Why does this keep happening? Perhaps because it's 2023, and you can get an Amazon package faster than an insurance quote from most agencies. However, as an advocate for agents, I believe this is about to change for everyone's benefit with the current advancement in AI.

If you haven't been hearing about AI, I recommend this article, which breaks it down into simple terms. AI has been around for decades, but with increased venture funding and growing consumer popularity, thanks to companies like OpenAI and their ChatGPT product, more industries are exploring how AI might help them. In the insurance world, we're at a point where some think AI will replace insurance agents within the next ten years. However, I'm here to counter that notion and suggest that AI in insurance will be built for agents, with agents helping to pioneer a stronger wave of AI in the industry. Agents are on the front lines, working with customers and handling large amounts of data that AI needs to add value in the insurance space. Once the initial excitement about AI settles, I believe AI will be developed to support agents, not to disrupt them.

Consider the tasks agents handle daily:

  1. Creating marketing materials.
  2. Gathering customer data.
  3. Inputting data into various insurer portals.
  4. Identifying the best insurers for customers.
  5. Exploring additional insurance opportunities.
  6. Engaging in customer follow-ups.
  7. Document collection and policy binding.
  8. Managing customer service.
  9. Revisiting customer policies for better options.

These tasks are ripe for AI assistance, not replacement. Imagine a world where AI aids but doesn't overtake human roles.

AI can:

  1. Generate creative marketing content.
  2. Streamline data collection from various sources.
  3. Facilitate data integration into insurer systems.
  4. Aid in determining the best insurers for clients.
  5. Personalize follow-up communications.
  6. Gather essential information for policy binding.
  7. Act as a customer communication conduit.
  8. Assist in policy re-marketing.

We interviewed our insurance agent customer base about their awareness and thoughts on AI, and many had already started leveraging existing solutions to automate daily workflows. One agent uses ChatGPT to generate follow-up emails with their customers, another tested uploading policy declaration pages to see if they could extract data from them, and we've even seen agents run data analysis on their databases through AI systems. If you’re an agent and haven’t experienced what AI can do in 2023, try asking any question in the chat box below or use the question I added of"What are the state minimum auto insurance limits in Wisconsin" to see how ChatGPT answers in a human-like way. I’ll forewarn you: even as an ex-software engineer, I was impressed. However, be aware that the information ChatGPT provides can be wildly inaccurate and should be fact-checked.

I’m writing this article because I’m building a community interested in AI in the Insurance Agency space. AI for Insurance Agents is my way of synthesizing all the new and upcoming AI advancements and how they apply to agents, whether they're helpful or not. I’d appreciate it if you subscribed to this blog and left comments when you feel compelled. Feel free to also message me on LinkedIn and let me know: is AI the next fax machine? Or is it truly revolutionary to the space?

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