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I Don’t Understand Why We Don’t Have All the Business!

I have said it a million times, and I will say it once more — I don’t understand why we don’t have all the business! Our blog team told me not to sound like a salesperson in this post, but I am the EVP of sales. What were they expecting from me? I’ve been selling State National’s products for over 20 years because they’re the best, so why shouldn’t I say it? It’s just a fact.

I'm shouting it from the rooftops!

I’ve never been shy about telling anyone who will listen about the significant and game-changing differences between us and other providers. Sometimes I’m loud about it, and I guess it sounds like I’m bragging. But in the famous words of Muhammad Ali, “It’s not bragging if you can back it up.”

So let me do just that. I will tell you exactly why our service makes your life easier and your business more profitable, and then you can decide for yourself.

So go ahead and ask, “John, what makes you so sure your company is the best in the business?”

 

Why is State National better for your institution that all other portfolio tracking and insurance providers?

 

Just a few of the reasons why...

  • We own the whole thing from soup to nuts
  • Our loss ratio stays consistently in your favor, which results in more money for you
  • We offer the best service to your borrowers
  • We proactively avoid friction on claims
  • We invest in superior technology, and our InsurTrak platform blows the rest away
  • Because portfolio protection is our focus, we offer, hands down, the best service to financial institutions

Our goal is an outstanding client experience in every way. That translates to better-designed programs, better business services, a better borrower experience, and more money for you.

We’ve set up our whole business model around the philosophy that when you succeed, we succeed. That’s why State National works so hard to offer superior service, and to go the extra mile for you without taking shortcuts. Allow me to break each of these points down further.

We own the whole things from soup to nuts.

Plain and simple. Nobody out there, besides us, manages their programs from beginning to end. What does that mean for you? For starters, State National can work with you to offer a modified program customized to fit your financial institution’s needs.

icon of two gears

It also means that, unlike my competitors, we are the underwriter. This gives us unmatched flexibility to customize to meet your institution’s specific needs. On top of that, it also means we are the ones responsible for claims payments. With other providers, the responsibility and control fall onto the underwriter, not them. When claims go unpaid, they pass the blame — “Sorry, if it were up to me we would have paid your claim, but it wasn’t my decision.”

With State National it’s just the opposite — we are here to help your business and your bottom line. That means we don’t try to pass the buck. We actively seek to pay your claims whenever we can. We don’t send you to 5 different people for 5 different coverage claims; you deal with one empowered expert who will remind you of your policy coverages if you forget to ask, and actually coach your staff to maximize how much you’ll get. And when a claim can’t be approved, we can tell you exactly why. You deserve to know. Other providers are limited in what they can guarantee because much of the process is out of their control. Because we have more control and decision-making authority than the other guys do, we can offer better service and transparency.

 

Our loss ratio stays consistently in your favor, which results in more money for you.

Our loss ratio stays more consistent because we put several systems in place to ensure loss ratios most often fall in favor of the financial institution, not the other way around, and also that they stay more consistent for longer periods of time than our competitors.

icon of a hand holding a bag of money

For starters, we offer ongoing training for your new and continuing employees who work with us. Because what happens when there is turnover in your business? Unfortunately for financial institutions not using State National, a change in roles combined with a lack of training from your portfolio protection provider can result in unpaid claims from a lack of filing, or not knowing how to file to get maximum benefits. That unclaimed money goes right into the pockets of the agent. Not with State National — we want your staff to know how to get the best value for you.

We also have more automated services in place with our claims process. We make it easier than ever, paying some claims in just seconds using AI-based InstaClaim. Our program has been developed to ensure that more often than not your loss ratio will be where it is providing the most value for your financial institution. Our claims payment calculation on full retail value favors the lender more than any other program available today.

 

We offer the best service to your borrowers.

We are the Cadillac of the industry. When you choose us as your service provider, you are choosing a higher-value program. State National gives you a lot more for your dollar, starting with eliminating friction and borrower noise. We understand that how we represent you to your borrowers is very important, and we work to cater to their needs as an individual. And with today’s heightened consumer expectations, you have to be even more sensitive in your communications, because in today’s world an aggravated borrower has many options and platforms for leaving negative feedback

icon of woman with headset

We treat each borrower as an individual, customizing our messaging for their particular needs and stage of using our service. Part of that individualized service includes over 15 targeted, borrower-friendly videos that describe their specific situation and what they need to do next. We communicate with borrowers with a lapse in coverage through mail, email, and text. We even reach out to a borrower’s co-signer. Borrowers can either call us to speak to someone, upload their insurance electronically via online or mobile, or text or email without ever talking to a person. But if they DO want to talk to someone, our onsite contact center features service others can’t match with their non-expert overseas reps, to resolve any borrower issues quickly and satisfactorily, with one-call resolution. We understand your borrower’s time is valuable and want to make it as easy as possible for them to update their insurance.

Once someone has a policy in place, we offer one-on-one care. Recognizing that at this point a borrower may be a little out of sorts, we avoid automation and switch to a direct phone call with one of our wonderful contact center teammates, who will answer any of their questions, nurture them through the process, and offer solutions.

 

How We Reduce Borrower Noise

How State National Reduces Borrower Noise-1

 

At the end of their call, we ask borrowers to take a survey to measure their satisfaction and see if their issue was resolved. We are the only service provider in our industry that measures the quality of our calls, and then provides the results so our clients can see the quality of service their borrowers are receiving. Did we treat them with respect? Did we provide the information they needed? Were we transparent? We want to know. It might sound like a small thing, but a lot of these small things add up to a huge impact.

Better yet, because we own the whole process from start to finish, we not only record our phone interactions, we make them immediately available. There’s no need to request the recording of a call, wait for a response, wait for your request to be approved, and then wait to get the recording days or even weeks later — you can access all phone interactions between State National and your borrower instantly, without any hold-up, with one click through our custom portal, InsurTrak. We become part of your collections team, giving them real, actionable, and timely information.

 

We proactively avoid friction on claims.

Part of the stereotypical insurance business model is to stall on paying claims, and for a company to try to avoid paying whatever they can. We turn that stereotype on its head. We bend over backward to be sure our clients get every dollar they are entitled to, even if it means telling our clients they’re actually entitled to more than they thought they were on a claim. We coach your staff to maximize the benefits you can get from us. Why would we do that? Sounds dumb on our part, right? No, it’s actually very smart. It’s one of the things that makes us a true partner and not just a vendor.

icon of a beer glass and wine glass toasting

We want to build a relationship with you for the long term. That means it’s all about trust, transparency, and having your back. We know that making a quick dime in the short term is nothing compared to building a lasting, win-win partnership that benefits everyone involved.

 

We invest in superior technology.

Network switch and ethernet cables,Data Center Concept

With our portfolio protection product, we have a plethora of automated components on the front end to keep your information as real-time as possible, starting with our proprietary InsurTrak platform, the industry’s only system built from scratch specifically for portfolio protection insurance tracking, claims, and reporting. Where other providers have adapted technologies meant for other products and processes, InsurTrak is designed for maximum ease, speed, and transparency. When clients come to us from other providers, one thing we hear over and over again is how much better in every way InsurTrak is than what they were using before.

We’ve also invested in our WRAP (Web-Based Robotic Automated Processing) process, which uses artificial intelligence and software robots to update your borrowers’ insurance data by scanning insurers’ websites. WRAP can handle thousands of inquiries and updates in seconds, with no human intervention and with lightning speed and accuracy — and all done without ever having to contact the vast majority of your borrowers, which means less noise.

 

How State National's Robots Work for You

How State Nationals Robots Work For You-1

 

And we keep improving WRAP. Now our bots are also working to proactively search for new policy information on new loans and cancellations before ever notifying a borrower — and the results have been incredible. We’ve also got another AI-based system rolling out soon that will further revolutionize the service we provide to our clients, for even better results.

 

We simply offer the best service to financial institutions.

I sometimes get frustrated when I hear some of the things other salespeople say about how “Oh, yeah, we have that feature or benefit too” when what they have is not actually the same at all. Or they’ll talk about having specialized analytics, but somehow nobody can ever explain how those work. We don’t believe in smoke and mirrors. We can back up everything we say. I always encourage financial institutions to ask their portfolio provider for evidence and the details behind each of their product offering claims. Read the fine print. It is easy for a service provider to say they offer the same services, but do they really if the quality is not the same?

For example, as I shared earlier, we also offer a text program in addition to phone calls, email, and mail notifications when there’s a lapse in coverage. Unlike other providers, we do not just refer you to a third-party text provider. We do the work for you, setting up and managing your text program so it’s effortless for you and your staff. Not to mention, unlike others it’s at no cost to you for the life of your program. So when other providers say, “Oh, yes, we offer a texting program too,” they’re not even talking about the same thing.

 

State National Texting — for Faster Borrower Action! 

State National Text Messaging Animated-1

I have so many other examples — just ask me about our follow-up and request acknowledgement and personal touch, and I will get on a roll!

When I sit down and talk with prospective clients and ask them questions about their program, I listen for what’s important to them, what they like about their current program, and what they don’t like. And I can honestly say that if what they currently have is really the best program for them, I would tell them, “Sure, stick with what you have, it sounds like it’s perfect.” But in reality it’s never that way, because State National’s program is so far superior to all the others out there, and 99% of the time I can help them save more money and get better service for both their borrowers and their staff.

Many lenders will tell us it’s the relationship with their current insurance agent that keeps them from changing providers. Now don’t get me wrong, relationships are very important, but in the end the most important factor is the overall effect on your financial institution and your customers. At State National we retain business by providing the best value to our partners — it’s just the icing on the cake that I happen to be a nice guy, too, and that my colleagues and I end up forming solid, enjoyable, and lasting friendships with our clients. Why not have great relationships AND the top-of-the-line product, too?

At State National, our vision is a superior client experience. We have the best portfolio protection products, the best technology, the best components, and the best delivery because we are straightforward. When we tell you, “This is what we have,” we mean it.

Above all, state National has a team of individuals who are truly committed to you — and because of that, I honestly don’t understand why we don’t have all the business!

Want to hear even more reasons why we offer the best portfolio protection service in the business? Reach out to us and get connected. 

 

John Pearson
John Pearson
John Pearson is Executive Vice President and National Sales Manager of State National Insurance Companies, where he is responsible for all aspects of the sales of collateral protection insurance (CPI) to lenders across the country. John works closely with automobile lenders and collectors throughout the country, is an expert in the CPI arena, and is a frequent speaker at various lending conferences. John holds a master’s degree in Industrial Psychology and has held leadership positions in Organization Development and Recruitment as well as Sales and Marketing.

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How State National’s Client Advisory Council Creates a Virtuous Circle At State National, client experience is the foundation of everything we do. We don’t see our client relationships as static; each one is dynamic and evolving as a living, breathing entity. And it’s vital that we prioritize and nurture our client partnerships as we do with the other foundational pillars of our company. One the most effective ways we do this is to collaborate with our clients. We talk to our clients, we ask them what they want, and we include them when crafting our business strategies. We have always considered actively getting feedback from our clients as an integral and critical part of our strategic planning. It’s why we conduct our Annual Survey of Service Quality as well as other surveys measuring other aspects of our service delivery. Our #1 goal is to help our business partners succeed, so finding out what they want and need, and how we can better provide it to them, is always top of mind. Taking the Quest for Feedback to the Next Level In 2018, we went a step further and created the State National Client Advisory Council (CAC) to convene a group of some of our top clients to discuss issues that are critically important to them and to us. It’s a forum to share information, gain consensus on key topics, and collaborate with peers and partners to creatively pursue problem-solving strategies and growth opportunities for their institutions As I said in my last CAC blog, our intention in establishing the State National CAC was, and still is, to listen carefully to the voices and concerns of our clients, foster an atmosphere where collaborative insights can emerge, and allow our strategy and product development to be guided by those who will actually be using it every day. Specifically Designed to Add Value — For All Yes, the CAC is of great benefit to State National, because it gives us opportunities to deepen relationships with some of our closest partners, and align our organization more precisely with our clients’ perspectives. We get to hear both what’s working well as well as challenges they’re facing, not only in our area of expertise, but in all areas of their institution. As we’ve been known to say a time or two, we’re successful when our clients are successful — so anything we can contribute to help them grow and succeed ultimately contributes to our own success as a company. But it’s definitely not all about us! Our council was created with a true desire to provide members with tangible, real-world benefits that not only make it more than worth their time but also add tremendous value they don’t get from any other partner. But don’t take it from us — here’s what some of our current CAC members have to say: “By having open conversations about what’s going on in the marketplace with other credit unions who are going through the same things, I’m able to learn how others are attacking certain problems and I’ve absolutely taken some things back to my credit union and implemented them.” ~ Mike Shockley, VP of Lending, True Sky Credit Union, Oklahoma City, OK “It’s great to talk about emerging technologies or other ideas we can bring back to our specific credit unions and share with our leadership team — ideas we might otherwise not have been exposed to. The volume of information at a very high level that someone can obtain by joining the CAC is wonderful." ~ John Cotner, VP of Commercial & Mortgage Lending, Horizon Credit Union, Boise, ID “When it comes to topics like innovation and technology and AI, I think I've learned more from the CAC than I have by going to conferences and things like that, because you can really have more intimate conversations with your peers at the council, and State National does a great job of bringing in great presenters that really position the topics well, so it's easily understood as we're reviewing certain new innovations.” ~ James Bolin, SVP & CMEO, Silver State Schools Credit Union, Las Vegas, NV “One of the benefits of being on the CAC is not only meeting some of the participants from different parts of the country and having discussions, but I have also been able to take away two specific strategic business initiatives that directly impact the credit union that came about through my participation on the CAC, including one that is a multi-year strategic initiative.” ~ Steve McIntire, SVP, Enterprise Risk & General Counsel, SELCO Community Credit Union, Eugene, OR State National is a great partner. I'm glad they asked me to join the CAC because it gives me an opportunity to keep that partnership active and very vibrant. And I enjoy the fact that I get to see what State National is doing and what’s on their horizon and how it’s going to benefit not only my credit union, but the credit union industry. So it’s been really awesome.” ~ Karen Hoeppner, Chief Lending Officer, My Credit Union, Minneapolis, MN A Real-World Example of CAC Value The council’s 3rd quarter 2021 meeting provides an illustration of the tangible benefits of this ongoing collaborative sharing of ideas and insights. The council met in August in Irvine, California, headquarters of Filene Research Institute. Filene is an integral thought leadership partner for State National, and that partnership further extends directly to our CAC members. The business portion of the event was held at Filene’s innovative West Coast outpost. Dr. Bill Maurer, professor at UC Irvine, Director at the Institute for Money, Technology, and Financial Inclusion, and research fellow at Filene’s Center of Excellence in Emerging Technology, conducted a working session called “The Pandemic as Practice for a Less-Predictable Future.” Group discussion led to shared best practices on how credit unions can automate communication regarding the notice cycle, which improves their member perception of CPI. Participants also explored other risk mitigation strategies credit union peers are using and how they are approaching risk mitigation overall in light of the uncertainty and turbulence caused by the pandemic and other economic shifts. Relevant, Actionable Insights Following Dr. Maurer’s presentation and discussion, CAC members and SNC directors formed working groups to discuss business challenges related to highly relevant credit union hot topics, including data governance, AI implementation, and digital automation, including mobile. After a lively conversation and sharing of experiences, each working group was tasked with conducting further collaborative research into their group’s subject area. With their curiosity sparked, CAC members made plans to dive in together to produce real-world insights they can share with other decision-makers in their credit union. The groups will also present their findings at the Q4 CAC meeting in November. Personal Connections When the day’s work was over, members joined State National representatives for an enjoyable and relaxing evening outing. After the mental stimulation provided by the day’s deep dive into important credit union topics, it was nice to move to a casual setting on the water and interact on a more personal level, while enjoying excellent conversation and lots of laughter. Then, the next day, it was time to head back to their credit union homes, bringing knowledge, insights, advice, and inspiration with them as they work on their findings and look for openings within their institutions to leverage what they’ve learned. Discover More Are you a curious credit union professional, always looking to grow and give back to your organization? Do you enjoy bouncing ideas off like-minded people in your industry and get a little thrill when you see these synergies expand what’s possible for you and for them? Are you a believer in true connection with those you work with and mutually beneficial partnerships with your service providers? Contact Heather Clyde, State National’s Client Advisory Council Program Manager, at HClyde@StateNational.com to explore the possibility of council membership. “The CAC has exceeded my expectations. On a fun note, the group is great. My colleagues on the CAC and the staff at State National are all very enjoyable and very professional. State National does a wonderful job of putting the events together. They’re well thought out, well organized. I think it’s a great two-way relationship, the CAC. I think we’re benefiting State National, and they are certainly benefiting us.” ~ John Cotner, Horizon CU   “State National has always considered our clients as more than just clients — we truly do see each and every one of these connections as an authentic partnership. Our goal for client relationships is always more than transactional; we’re always going for a win-win situation and strive to evolve all of these partnerships to serve the long-term strategic business goals for both parties. Our CAC is growing to be a vital component of State National’s overall corporate strategy, and it’s very gratifying to see that it is already helping to serve the long-term strategic interests of our CAC members and their credit unions.” ~ Heather Clyde, Client Advisory Council Program Manager