Whether AEP 2020 will be your first selling season or your tenth, staying organized is critical. We’ve created the AEP 2020 checklist to make the annual enrollment period easier, more profitable, and enjoyable. Additionally, we’ve got tips and essential dates to mark on your calendar.
Get ready to sell
By now, you’ve most likely completed your certifications. Take a moment to double-check that you’ve finished everything you need for AEP—from AHIP certifications to carrier training.
Arriving at client meetings with all the necessary documents is critical to your reputation (and your agent business!). Make sure you have all your carrier supplies well in advance of that first appointment.
You can order your plan materials directly from your carrier. You can call your carrier or place an order via your agent portal.
When you receive your materials, familiarize yourself with the layout and details. That way, when you’re face-to-face with a client, you’ll appear professional and knowledgeable as you guide them through the process.
Put these critical dates on your calendar
The upcoming months are sure to be busy! Mark these important dates on your calendar to guarantee you’re selling and marketing at the correct times, as well as maximizing your sales opportunities.
October 1st: You can begin marketing legally to clients
October 15th: AEP 2020 officially begins
December 7th: AEP 2020 ends
January 1st: 1) Plans you sold during AEP come into effect and 2) OEP (Open Enrollment Period) begins.
Note: OEP allows clients to switch from the plan you sold them during AEP to a different one. Keep in mind that you are not allowed to market to clients during this period!
March 31st: OEP ends.
Set your goals
If this is not your first AEP, use previous years’ numbers to determine how many plans you want to sell in AEP 2020.
If this is your first AEP season, write down your goals. Goals might include working out how many plans you can realistically sell. Look at your calendar to get an idea of how many meetings you can do daily or weekly.
Also, think about your closing rate. For example, how many policies do you want to sell per ten meetings? Once you have a number, set up a spreadsheet to track your progress and successes.
Step up your marketing
While your marketing efforts are a year-round activity, it’s time to ramp up your marketing for AEP.
Start with your marketing plan
Revisit your marketing plan. Are you on-schedule for sending out AEP and reminder emails? Have you checked your competitors’ websites and social media channels? What are they doing to promote their services this AEP?
Re-evaluate your digital outreach
Your digital presence matters most leading up to AEP. Are you active on Facebook (on your business page)—providing helpful AEP tips to prospective clients?
Now is the perfect time to show Medicare-eligible seniors (as well as their caregivers, family members, and friends) that you can make getting a Medicare plan easy.
Tap into your book of business
Take a look at your book of business. How can you increase sales opportunities from your existing clients? Ask them to refer you to friends, family, and coworkers who may need an insurance plan. Your clients trust you, making this is an easy way to add new clients to your business.
Make the AEP 2020 application process a snap
The following is an updated version of the application tips we published originally in 2018.
Avoid slowing down processing due to errors in client applications. Here are six simple tips to keep your applications moving seamlessly through the system.
- Ensure that you and your client’s signature dates are on or after October 15th, 2019.
- Make sure the client’s signature date and the submitting date on the application are the same.
- Double-check that your signature date and your client’s signature date are marked with the year 2019—NOT 2020.
- Primary Care Physicians must be on HMO applications and highly advised on PPO applications (carrier specific).
- On the application, make sure you have your client in the correct enrollment period. This is especially important for clients in the Initial Enrollment Period (IEP).
- Make sure you understand how your carrier wants applications submitted (e.g., via agent portal). To make submitting your applications as smooth as possible, organize carrier information, so it’s easy to access.
Take action every day
The upcoming weeks will go by quickly. October 1st, you’ll start marketing to seniors in need of a new Medicare plan. Shortly after that, the selling season will begin.
Keep in mind, that at the height of AEP, Thanksgiving will come around. People will be traveling and preoccupied with the holiday week (plan for this!). After Thanksgiving, you’ll be on the downhill slope toward the end of AEP. Phew!
Starting from today, use the checklist below to help you stay organized and on top of all the AEP details.
Your AEP 2020 Agent Checklist
⬜ Complete and check your AHIP and carrier certifications
⬜ Order all your carrier materials and familiarize yourself with the documents
⬜ Put critical AEP dates on your calendar
⬜ Set your AEP sales goals and create your spreadsheet
⬜ Fine-tune your marketing
⬜ Triple-check every application
⬜ Submit your applications according to your carrier’s specifications
Have a fantastic and profitable AEP season!