Smart Choice, an insurance agency network, has announced that it will be celebrating its approaching milestone by offering a $10,000 prize to the 10,000th agency to join its network. Currently, Smart Choice has around 9,900 member agencies and expects to reach the 10,000 mark in the fourth quarter of this year.
The decision to partner with a network is a crucial one for independent insurance agencies, and Smart Choice emphasizes the importance of agent-friendly contract terms and the strength of the network. This includes factors such as the number of agency members, carrier partnerships, geographic coverage, and negotiating power when it comes to agency compensation.
The market share of independent agents has been increasing, according to a recent report from the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America. Factors such as the hard market and disruptions caused by agency acquisitions have led to the establishment of a growing number of independent agencies.
When considering potential relationships with a network, Smart Choice advises agencies to ask probing questions about fees, contract commitments, retaining ownership, and the number of agencies under contract. Many networks, alliances, and clusters are relatively small in size.
In addition to the milestone celebration, Smart Choice has made some recent appointments, including Brock Miles as general counsel and Spencer Witcher as Western regional director.
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