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PIA National President Andy Harris Refutes the Direct Writers

If you pay attention to some industry pundits — which is always risky — you might think that customers increasingly want to buy insurance policies online.
May 22, 2013

If you pay attention to some industry pundits — which is always risky — you might think that customers increasingly want to buy insurance policies online. You might come to believe that younger customers really want to transact business online. You could assume that price is the prime motivating factor in insurance purchases. You might even be tempted to conclude that people value insurance agents less.

The trouble with all of that is all of it is wrong! PIA National President Andrew C. Harris notes that in just the past year, there have been several large surveys conducted that reveal that this so-called “conventional wisdom” is incorrect. One of these surveys was conducted by Ernst & Young. Another was conducted by Accenture. Another was conducted by PIA, through our company council, the PIA Partnership. The bottom line on all of them: consumers value what agents provide and they prefer dealing with agents!

Harris notes that misconceptions about what consumers want are being driven by massive advertising by the direct writers. “We need to get the truth out person by person, client by client,”said Harris, in his latest President’s Message to PIA. “Warren Buffett can pay to put a billion geckos on our television screens, but a cartoon character or a disembodied voice will never be there after a Hurricane Katrina or a Superstorm Sandy, personally helping insureds put their lives back together.” You can read Harris’ full message here.