Appointed Representatives: the Powerful Local Broker Renaissance

“The renaissance of the local broker”.  This is the strap line the Gauntlet Appointed Representative Network has been using for over two years now and one that always resonates greatly in a month that hosts the birth dates of artists such as Da Vinci and Raphael.  But why do we use this phrase?

The reason is simple.  Our AR Network is more than just a vehicle through which account executives can start their own insurance brokerage.  It’s a force to be reckoned with, in terms of putting local brokers back on the map and fuelling their businesses in a dynamic and meaningful way, so that local broking can enjoy a true rebirth.

Put this in context.  Anyone in the insurance sector knows what consolidation has done to the market, swallowing up broking businesses and decimating the population of traditional and dedicated brokers.  But with that has come centralisation, the de-personalisation of insurance provision and poorer levels of client service.  Clients are noticing.  And where there is a need, there is a demand.  There is a big hole in insurance provision for commercial customers now and it’s a hole that talented broking individuals can fill, if they have the right backing.

The Gauntlet approach to appointed representative-run brokerages

The Gauntlet-driven local broker renaissance is not just about starting new broking businesses, in our view.  Any AR network can do that.  For Gauntlet, it’s about launching and sustaining profitable and vibrant broking businesses.  To assist ARs, we leverage our tremendous national buying power and strive for highly attractive commission rates.  That’s a win-win for both broker and client.  The broker earns more and stays motivated; the client benefits from having a wide choice of covers and attractive premiums.

This is made possible because we run our direct broking business in parallel to our AR network.  That firstly produces significant volume for our insurer partners, so we can negotiate better terms. Secondly, it allows our direct team to positively fuel our appointed representatives’ businesses, by providing mentoring advice and blueprints of sales campaigns that they have tried and tested and which work.  There’s no need for ARs to reinvent the wheel.

This then creates a virtuous circle, generating more business for our insurer partners, who subsequently provide even better terms for us.

Continuous lead generation and sales support for ARs

Thirdly, it sees our ARs benefiting from the sales materials that our direct team use, with a bank of themed insurance collateral on hand, whether they wish to educate a customer about cyber, private health or a range of other insurance covers.  ARs can simply tap into this resource and apply it to their own sales campaign.

Then there are direct sales leads made available to our appointed representatives through the significant spend that we commit to lead generation.  Our ARs can take advantage of this at any time, whether they want to build their book, fill a quiet month, plug a gap in sales or better balance their business.

Holistic approach behind the local broker renaissance

Our local broker renaissance is assisted by a website that allows customers to choose which local broker to work with, from across our network.  It’s a Gauntlet Group website but one that exists to help our appointed representatives pick up more clients.

Three AR events a year also provide our appointed representatives with new ideas for generating business and details of the latest investments we have made in systems that will enable them to boost sales performance.  They can simultaneously network with other appointed representatives and pick up knowledge from their peers.

Our strategy is all about sustainability.  We don’t want to set account execs off on a path to failure.  We want to create renaissance masterpieces that can survive long into the future.

Direct insurer-contact, no broking limits and income opportunities

Our attitude towards broking is also key here.  We allow our ARs to have direct liaison with insurers and to handle broking how they want to handle it, placing risks to whatever size they wish.  If they just want to concentrate on client liaison, however, our in-house head office brokers can carry out risk placement for them.

Then, we have even developed our own Gauntlet Premium Credit finance solution, to enable our ARs to earn more income.

The proof that it works

We have always known that our mentoring and input makes a huge difference to a start-up broking business but that is now self-evident, since we launched our new and alternative route into becoming an appointed representative – Gauntlet Brokerage Builder.

Those former account execs who have joined us in an employed role of Broking Partner Designates and who have been building their future brokerages, whilst working alongside our head office team, have been absolutely flying.  They have applied everything the direct team has suggested, utilised the lead-generation programme and generated an income stream that demonstrates, beyond doubt, that the customer is hungry for good, relevant local broking support.

Their businesses have become ready to go, far quicker than we could have anticipated and we shall be launching our first new brokers into the market, through this route, very soon.

The rebirth of former directly authorised broking businesses

But there is more validity then ever behind our use of the ‘local broker renaissance’ strap line. It has acquired new meaning through our pioneering of the first model of broker de-authorisation – Gauntlet Deauthorisation Fast-track (GDF).  This has allowed struggling smaller brokers, who were directly authorised and facing challenges such as compliance handling, accounting, PI and lack of free time, to be completely reborn as brokers.  Their business performance, having become Gauntlet ARs, can most definitely be described as a renaissance. Through this model, we have achieved our aim keeping talented, dedicated broking professionals within the market.

Many directly authorised brokers are consequently recognising how powerful our proposition is and also appreciating that there is an easy-transition exit route, should they wish to take it.  They can gradually move clients over to Gauntlet for a staggered retirement, or sell the entire book to Gauntlet, when the time is right.  For their clients, it is seamless.

Making waves with our renaissance

Our commitment to brokers is unswerving, which may be why we are attracting more brokers from other networks than ever before.  We give meaning to partnering. Being part of Gauntlet’s local broker renaissance is empowering.  We are more than just an AR principal.

Having a network of brokers always wondering “what next?” is highly motivating for us and our head office team share in the successes of our ARs and gain satisfaction from seeing them prosper with their help.  For this reason, we shall continue to develop all the initiatives that will put local brokers back where they belong, at the heart of their local communities and niches.

Have no doubt, the renaissance of the local broker is underway.  If you want to play a part in it, just get in touch. Email or call him on 07774 690436.

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