Launching the new digital insurance brokerage, North Improvement, LLC, has gone from being a goal of mine to a reality thanks to investments of both time and financial capital from my Co-Founder and brother Joseph Kopser and myself. Despite our starting out as a one-man shop, with only myself holding insurance licenses, we have been able to develop client facing technology that rivals or exceeds that of even the largest and best funded brokerages in the world, and we have been able to develop most of it in-house for pennies on the dollar in a mere 2 month span thanks to my many years of mobile and web app development experience.
Beyond developing technology, forming the new company, as well as getting it and myself licensed to do business in several states has been an exciting, but at times tedious and frequently confusing experience. Insurance is regulated differently by each state, and this can lead to wide differences surrounding licensing requirements in each. Despite the difficulty of the process, I’m thankful to say that we have charged through and the company is now licensed to serve as your property & casualty insurance broker in 7 states with many more to come, as client demand requires.
Technology & Personal Touch
While we are built around great technology, and I refer to the company as a digital insurance brokerage, I use the term ‘digital’ somewhat loosely. I have built what I believe is an industry leading website, which features an automated Chatbot, a coverage request platform, one of the broadest insurance FAQ collections in the industry, and more. Despite having great technology, our digital capabilities are only some of the company’s defining features. We believe that our industry knowledge, coverage expertise, carrier relationships and personal touch are equally important to properly provide for our clients. Overall, these technology and servicing capabilities are simply tools we use to offer our existing and potential clients a solution that perfectly fits their unique insurance needs, regardless of what those needs may be. Protecting and making our clients happy is our entire reason for existing. Technology and the rest of what we offer are simply a means to that end.
If you work in the industry or have purchased your own insurance in the past you may be wondering, with all of the options available to service clients in the modern insurance industry, why did we decide to set up a brokerage? While many Direct Writers and Managing General Agents (MGAs) have been at the forefront of necessary technological advancement in the industry, we believe that the broker model still has massive value, though this value is largely lost unless brokerages offer technology and service that matches or exceeds what is offered by technology focused Direct Writers and MGAs.
Customers vs. Clients
An insurance provider like Geico or State Farm, which known as Direct Writers, may be able to offer you a rate in minutes, but are they properly servicing you by treating you like a customer? Without conducting an in depth review of your risk exposure, a Direct Writer is often simply acting as a vessel for you to use in order to act as your own broker and advisor. They see you as a customer who is buying something from them, rather than a client who they are representing. They will allow you to add and remove insurance coverage that you may or may not need, as well as select limits, deductibles, and more that may not be adequate for your needs. We think that this solution offers obvious convenience, but that you can benefit tremendously from the expertise of a great broker representing you. The operative word there is ‘great’. A broker who is not great or who uses antiquated technology may only act as a middleman between you and insurance providers, thereby adding time to a process that you could handle more quickly on your own.
We believe that it is not your job as our client to be an insurance expert. It is our job to offer you our expertise and to make insurance simple and seamless for you. Our only requirements if you wish to be a client are that you are honest, forthcoming and care deeply about the things that you own and/or the business that you run. From that foundation point we will be able to craft a unique coverage solution for nearly every individual, family and business that seeks us out. Beyond crafting a unique coverage solution, we are equipped to service nearly every aspect of our clients’ risk related needs, such as helping to plan home inspections, cancelling policies with prior carriers, helping to have home or building protection features installed by a reputable vendor, providing advice on cyber security best practices and much more.
It is with this client-focused philosophy in mind that we now set out to build a lasting and ever advancing company, where clients are viewed as potential clients for life who are deserving of continued care and service over the years that they trust us as their broker.
Over the coming weeks I will be unveiling more information about our capabilities through this blog and via additional original content, particularly our soon to be released ‘Risk Directions Podcast’ series, which I will be hosting. Risk Directions will focus on developing topics in the world of risk that have a real world impact on our lives, and much more.
As an important closing note, many friends reading, and some who will not see, this post have been more supportive of my plans than I even could have began to imagine when I announced my intention to start a new company. On top of their support, many have generously asked me how they can help us out. If you are wondering the same, the two simplest ways are to A) give me the opportunity to be your broker and B) refer a friend who may need insurance help. If you are not sure if you are adequately covered or aren’t happy with your current broker or insurance provider, I will be more than happy to conduct a free review of your account, obtain competitive quotes and then discuss how they help to improve on your existing coverage, all completely free of charge. Additionally, if you know of a friend who has had a bad claims experience, is getting married, planning to buy a house or condo, or recently came into money through a death in the family, I would be more than happy to assess their new risk exposure and work with them to craft a coverage solution that fits their evolving need for protection. Further, if you are a real estate agent or mortgage broker I can assist in finding your clients coverage in order to help make closings a smoother process. Additionally, if you are a financial advisor I can assist your clients by finding them coverage that helps to protect the wealth that you are helping them grow.
I want to sincerely thank you for reading this introductory piece, and for visiting our website, which I hope you explore in more depth now that you have finished reading this. I would recommend starting with the homepage and working from there. I also hope to hear from you (my contact information is below) and would love the opportunity to try to win you as a client. When your current personal or commercial policy renewals come up, we want you to keep us in mind and request a free account review!
Hayden A. Kopser
August 8th, 2019