Saturday, January 23, 2010

Tague Alliance - Is Tort Reform Dead?

Tort Reform Is DEAD Or A Crisis Is Looming

Tony Veteto
Tague Alliance
A SIAA Master Agency

Dr. Robert Hartwig of the Insurance Information Institute on Tort Reform:

Continuous auto insurance discount, good or bad?

Californians for Fair Auto Insurance Rates Qualifies Initiative for June 2010 Ballot

Tony Veteto
Tague Alliance
A SIAA Master Agency

How many more changes do we need to our California auto insurance regulations? We are in the midst of working through the Prop 103 regulation enforcement which is already causing serious rate dislocation among the carriers, and now we have another potential wrinkle coming up in June.

Tague Alliance members are fortunate to be able to represent numerous preferred insurance carriers so they will be able to offer choices to their clients. However, rate dislocation from the top of the rating bands to the bottom of the rating bands can cause major service work if the variance is +-5% or greater. The consumer is so price sensitive right now that any rate changes are causing agents to have to remarket their accounts.

So what will a discount for continuous insurance do to the marketplace and the competitive landscape in the auto insurance world? Only time will tell....

Californians for Fair Auto Insurance Rates Qualifies Initiative for June 2010 Ballot

Measure expands auto insurance discount for California drivers

SACRAMENTO, Calif., Jan. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Californians for Fair Auto Insurance Rates, a coalition of consumer advocates, businesses, senior organizations, taxpayer advocates and insurers, announced today that the Secretary of State has certified the Continuous Coverage Auto Insurance Discount Act for the June 8, 2010 Primary Election ballot. CalFAIR submitted 726,199 signatures and needed 433,971 valid signatures in order to qualify. This measure will allow auto insurance companies to offer discounts to drivers who have continuously maintained their auto insurance coverage.

Under current law, insurance companies are allowed to offer a discount to their existing customers who maintain continuous auto insurance coverage, often referred to as a loyalty discount. However, an inconsistency in the law prohibits drivers from being allowed to take their continuous coverage discount with them if they change insurance carriers. The Continuous Coverage Auto Insurance Discount Act fixes this inconsistency and makes the discount portable.

Like the good driver discount, this ballot measure would reward the more than 80% of responsible California drivers who maintain insurance coverage as required by law by making them eligible for a discount, even if they switch insurance companies. That means drivers will be eligible to take this discount with them when shopping for rates, giving drivers more options when it comes to their insurance coverage. The result will be increased competition, which will lower rates and result in reduced premiums.

That's why the measure is endorsed by groups like Consumers First, Consumers Coalition of California, Citizens Against Regulatory Excess, California Chamber of Commerce, Small Business Action Committee, League of United Latin American Citizens, California Taxpayer Protection Committee and many more.

"We are pleased that the Continuous Coverage Auto Insurance Discount Act has qualified for the June ballot. California consumers will be happy to know that by voting for this measure, they will be eligible to take their continuous coverage discount with them if they decide to change insurance carriers," said Jim Conran, coalition co-chair, president of Consumers First and former director of the California Department of Consumer Affairs. "The current inconsistency in the law prevents insurance companies from extending the continuous coverage discount to new customers and punishes good drivers who want to change insurers. That will change when this measure is passed and will provide consumers the opportunity to shop around for more savings and with more options."

The vast majority of California drivers (82%) maintain insurance and should be rewarded for keeping their insurance current.

Insurance companies still will be required to base a driver's auto insurance rates primarily on their driving safety record, miles driven annually and driving experience. Other discounts, like the good driver or student discount, will not be taken away.

For more information, please log on to our website at

SOURCE Californians for Fair Auto Insurance Rates


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Tague Alliance - Top 5 Things To Grow When Your Agency Is Slow.

Tague Alliance - Top 5 Things To Grow When Slow

Just a few short years ago I managed our Personal Lines department at Tague Insurance. I can tell you that our focus was relentless on cross-selling, account rounding, and generating as much business from our existing book as possible. If you have been in business for a number of years then you have a ton of opportunity ripe for the picking in your client base. EFT is a great money saver for clients and a huge boost to your retention. I have seen estimates from various studies that showed increased retention on clients with EFT ranging from 8-14%!

Sometimes though it is easier to take advice from an industry expert rather than me who manages Tague Alliance and SIAA member agencies. Dan King, a well know agency development trainer from Travelers, has an article he wrote in National Underwriter and it is his list of the top five things an agent can do when things are slow.

So go put his advice to work and I can guarantee you will see results from your efforts, and if you ever have a chance to attend one of Dan King's Agency Development classes do so.

Tony Veteto
Tague Alliance
An SIAA Master Agency

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Tague Alliance members and prospects...check out this free advice on Building A Successful Website at

Web Design Tips For Tague Alliance and SIAA Members

Almost all of us have a website these days. Some of our sites are better than others but one thing is for matter how good your website is things constantly change. Therefore it is extremely important to have a handle on the core concepts behind creating and maintaining a web presence.

I am just a rookie and still learning about the concepts and methods to be successful in search optimization and content management. There is a great resource that I came across and wanted to share with you.

Check out the Rothman Guide To Building Successful Websites for a good deal of free tips and advice.

Best wishes.

Tony Veteto
Live R.P.G. - Retention. Profit. Growth!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Using Social Media To Drive Traffic

In my last post I talked about making sure you have the right expectations when embracing Social Media. The article I posted by Kevin Conway Social Media for Business is CRAP! did a good job of challenging many of the assumptions about how wildly successful you will be just because you are using Social Media. At Tague Alliance I use the various Social Media sites to communicate with members and prospective agents, but not with the intent to "sell" anything.

One of my members challenged my comments about "not selling insurance on
Facebook" and her remark to me was that she had sold four policies as a direct result of being on Facebook. I am thrilled at her results. The bottom line is that you need to figure out how to embrace the trend of Social Media. Regardless of whether you are selling insurance as a direct result of using Social Media or are just trying to build a deeper connection with your clients.

Now the question becomes: how do I use Social Media and just as important how do I track the results. The video below from David Bullock will take you through a very quick case study with actual results on the use of Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Analytics.