There are three different types of Medicare products sold by agents and brokers: Medicare Supplement plans (Also called Medigap plans), Medicare Advantage plans and Medicare Part D Rx plans.
While some agents sell all three, others prefer to specialize in only one – either Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplement. To avoid Part D Rx annual certifications, AHIP training and CMS oversight, agents only offer supplements. However, to better maximize sales potential, agents should broaden their product portfolio. For instance, agents selling Medicare Supplements might as well offer Part D Rx plans, considering they go hand-in-hand.
There are certainly positives and negatives to specializing in one product area and diversifying with all three Medicare products. Keep reading to find out!
Strategy 1: Selling All Three Plan Types
To start, agents selling all three plan types will be better equipped to accommodate their client’s needs. Just as a Medicare Advantage plan is not right for everyone, a supplement and/or Rx plan is not always a client’s best option. Therefore, agents should offer all three product types; that way they’ll never have to walk away from a sale.
Though it seems common sense to offer all three plan types, there are understandable reasons why agents focus on only one. For instance, it’s difficult to manage the training and certifications required of Advantage and Part D plans. To be successful, agents must have a thorough knowledge of all three products; understanding the guidelines so as to remain compliant is the biggest obstacle to selling all three.
Strategy 2: Selling Both Medicare Supplements and Part D Rx Plans
Because Part D Rx plans compliment supplement sales, it makes sense to offer both. In most cases, clients want to pick up drug coverage, which isn’t included in a supplement. Though packaging supplements with drug coverage makes sense, there are a few issues agents should be aware of when offering Rx plans. First, agents have to follow CMS guidelines in order to remain compliant. The guidelines not only affect how you prospect for clients but also how you present to clients. In addition, agents have to complete product certifications and AHIP every year. Lastly, it takes time finding the right drug plan for every client; that’s why most use the plan finder on Medicare.gov.
Strategy 3: Selling Medicare Supplements Only
For those that don’t want to jump through CMS red-tape, then offering only Medicare Supplements is a simpler alternative. Instead of enrolling them in a drug plan, agents direct clients wanting drug coverage to the plan finder on Medicare.gov; clients will then sign up for it themselves. While this option avoids CMS regulations and oversight, the downside is not being able to fulfill all your clients’ needs.
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