Do you use any productivity apps to improve your work efficiency and effectiveness?
A new year represents a lot of things to insurance agencies – new business goals, an updated strategy, and new opportunities to win more clients.
As you look ahead to everything you want to accomplish in 2017, we want to provide you with a list of productivity apps to help you achieve your goals.
Selling insurance is a demanding business and the tools that got you where you are today may not be the best tools to get your agency to the next level.
Using the right productivity apps, you can build a system that allows you to communicate better, keep track of leads more effectively, and manage your business processes more efficiently.
Below are 13 productivity apps that are guaranteed to make 2017 a more productive sales year for your insurance agency:
Productivity Apps for 2017
If selling was as simple as pitching and closing leads, life would be much easier for every salesperson.
Unfortunately, there’s a lot of work to manage behind the scenes that kills your momentum.
The following productivity apps will help you stay organized and save time on routine tasks.
Slack is one of the most effective apps for communicating with your team.
It’s a simple, intuitive messaging app that works on desktop and all mobile devices.
There are hundreds of messaging apps to choose from, but Slack is the clear leader in this field and the tool used exclusively by the TrustedChoice.com and Agency Nation marketing team.
We’ve reduced our internal email usage by over 90% since we began using Slack almost a year ago.
Dropbox is a cloud storage service that allows you to store and share documents from any device with an internet connection (including your mobile phone).
Dropbox is secure and has a “team” option for sharing across your agency.
It’s especially useful when sharing documents that are too large for email or folders with multiple documents in them. At prices starting at $10 a month, Dropbox is a no-brainer for independent agencies.
3) Google Docs
Google Docs is a free alternative to the Microsoft Office Suite, (i.e. Word, Excel, and PowerPoint).
The advantage with Google Docs is the ability to collaborate on documents with other team members in real time, from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.
Google Docs is a great tool to use while collaborating on a new business proposal or creating a sales/marketing letter.
Evernote allows you to snap pictures and screenshots, save websites, write to-do lists, and create a wide variety of notes that are stored in the cloud and easily accessible from any device.
You can also share notes, ideas and resources throughout your team.
If you’re the type of person who has sticky notes all over your computer and 10 unread tabs open in your phone’s browser at all times, Evernote is a life-saver.
5) Doc Scan
In our fast-paced, digital world, we don’t have time to go to the copy machine or scanner.
Doc Scan is an iOS app that allows you to scan documents with your phone’s camera, sharpen the text, and create PDFs for easy sharing.
This isn’t a perfect scanning solution, but when time is tight, Doc Scan gets the job done.
OmniFocus is a robust productivity app for Mac, Apple Watch, and all iOS devices.
It allows you to manage and sync your email inbox, calendar, to-do list, ongoing projects, and much more from one platform.
Everything is organized through different perspectives, allowing you to separate various personal and work-related projects.
30/30 is a task manager that breaks up your to-do list into 30-minute chunks, making it easier to schedule your day and maintain high productivity without feeling overwhelmed.
The original concept has been around awhile, but the basic idea is very simple:
- You work for 30 minutes, focused only on a single task. WITH NO DISTRACTIONS!
- When the time is up, you give your mind a break and do something completely unrelated, also for 30 minutes.
And then you repeat the cycle: work/break, work/break – 30/30, 30/30.
At this time, 30/30 is only available on iOS.
8) Dragon NaturallySpeaking
The Dragon software line from Nuance provides professional-grade dictation for a variety of specialized needs, but the Dragon Anywhere app is what most insurance agents will be most interested in.
This app allows you to speak into your phone to draft emails, Word documents, Evernote notes, and many other documents, with 99% accuracy and no word limits.
I’ve used Dragon dictation in the past. If you’re pressed for time or simply don’t enjoy writing, Dragon dictation is a fantastic way to create content.
Get the bones of your content down through Dragon and then pay someone to clean up the article into something you can publish.
Paper documents are a hassle to manage and have signed.
DocuSign is one of the most popular e-signature services in the insurance industry. It allows you to email a contract to your prospect and get his or her digital signature in seconds, from any device.
Built in the cloud, DocuSign is always available and has carrier level security of client information.
In the fast-pace world of the modern insurance consumer, adding an e-signature solution to your agency is not a luxury, but a necessity.
Adobe Sign is a great alternative for insurance agencies that use other Adobe solutions already.
10) Effective CRM System
Customer relationship management (CRM) is essential for growing your agency efficiently and managing all of your leads and customers. But CRM systems aren’t cheap, so if you’re strapped for cash, you can always start with HubSpot’s free CRM.
Once you have the budget, check out the following CRMs to get a full-featured solution:
Be sure to compare costs and features to find the right CRM for your insurance agency, including whether or not the CRM system integrates with your agency management system.
TechCanary, an agency management system rapidly growing in popularity, has built-in integration in Salesforce CRM. This is an exciting feature for the sales-focused independent insurance agency.
11) Social Media Apps
Sales opportunities present themselves 24/7 on social media, which is why you always want the ability to communicate with prospects and current customers while you’re on the go.
LinkedIn’s mobile app is mandatory for insurance reps, along with Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. If you’re really savvy with social media marketing, you’ll be figuring out ways to promote your agency on Snapchat as well.
Check out the following guides to boost your social media marketing success:
- 13 Social Media Tweaks to Increase Engagement Immediately
- How to Make Your Facebook Page Come Alive
- The Business Case for Insurance LinkedIn Marketing
- Insurance Agents Quick Guide to Instagram
12) Slide Presentation
Not all insurance agents give presentations to prospects, but if you’re one that does, you’ll want to leave a great impression.
The PowerPoint basic application is fine, but there are better options.
If you’re a Mac and iOS user, Keynote is great for presentations and your file can be saved as a PowerPoint document as well.
A personal favorite of slide presentation option of mine is DeckSet.
We all collect business cards at networking events.
CamCard allows you to scan business cards, manage contacts, and sync those contacts across your mobile devices and CamCard’s web app in real time.
You can also integrate Salesforce to automatically update contacts with information from their business cards.
One item of note, taking on too many productivity apps will overwhelm you and actually reduce productivity.
So pick one, maybe two that you think could improve your agency’s efficiency and effectiveness, and focus on those first.
There is not an app that can replace the fundamentals of running a successful insurance agency, such as great customer experience and proactive networking.
However, apps and other business tools can help you take your agency to the next level.
These productivity apps will help create a more productive sales year in 2017.
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