Deb Casey

Deb Casey
Deb Casey, 1950 – 2017

We are saddened to announce that Deb Casey passed away this weekend. Her passing is a great loss to the EZLynx Team and to our customers whom she so doggedly advocated for each and every day. We know there are many agents who have worked with Deb over the past 12 years at EZLynx and experienced her tireless dedication first hand.

Aside from her many contributions to EZLynx and our customers, Deb was an avid dog enthusiast, breeder, and trainer. She began training her first dog when she was a very young child, putting her first obedience title on a dog in 1969. Schutzhund and competition obedience captured Deb’s attention for a number of years as she actively titled her dogs often with high scores including a number of High In Trials. She has also worked as a veterinary technician and trained/trialed Rottweilers in obedience for a top breeding kennel in Colorado. Deb was also on the Board of Directors of the Australian Cattle Dog Club of America and is past editor of their well-received Quarterly Magazine. For the past decade, Deb was the owner and editor of the online publication ACDSpotlight, which focused on the Australian Cattle Dog breed.

As an Australian Cattle Dog breeder, Deb bred very few litters – only 10. Of those litters however, she bred 20 Champions of record and some of those hold obedience, herding, and agility titles as well as some working in SAR, therapy and tracking. Deb believed in keeping only a very few dogs at a time and insisted that ALL be house dogs. She often stressed the importance of training and socializing puppies so they become pleasant lifetime companions.

Deb was dedicated, passionate, opinionated, and kind. EZLynx will not be the same place without her. She will be greatly missed.

A memorial celebration is scheduled for Friday, June 16 at 12:00 PM at EZLynx, located at 350 Highland Drive, Suite 150, Lewisville, Texas 75067. Memorial donations may be made to the National Animal Interest Alliance or to your local no-kill animal shelter.


EZLynx Sales Center: Sales Pipeline Management in EZLynx

The Evolution of ONE PLATFORM™ and our Agency-In-A-Box Roadmap

It was only a few short years ago that EZLynx was known as simply a comparative rating platform. While our introduction of comparative rating changed the industry forever, we knew from our agents that they were facing significant challenges from direct carriers, captive carriers, and online agencies that hurt their bottom lines. Most agents were dealing with incompatible multi-vendor solutions that ended up creating silos of information with duplicate data.

Seven years ago we decided to solve this problem by defining a new EZLynx roadmap for the industry that would offer agents a one-stop solution. Since then, our underlying goal has consistently been to build a complete customer lifecycle solution that would not only help our agents achieve greater success, but would also redefine our industry—again. EZLynx Sales Center is our next step on that journey.

Announced at the 2016 AgentLynx User Conference, EZLynx Sales Center is focused on growing your business by streamlining your agency’s sales pipeline. Seamlessly integrated into the EZLynx ONE PLATFORM™, Sales Center helps you identify sales opportunities, manage sales tasks, track close ratios, and focus on generating new revenue.

But the customer lifecycle doesn’t begin with Sales Center…

EZLynx One Platform

Step 1 — EZLynx Agency Websites

Every day, millions of consumers are using their phones, tablets, and desktops to search for insurance. Optimized to help drive traffic to your digital presence, Agency Websites is your online storefront.

Step 1 - EZLynx Agency Websites

We felt it was important to apply our insurance and technical knowledge to help agents compete online.  The most important aspect of our website services is that we seamlessly integrate our consumer-facing lead capture and custom service portals, which has always been something that many agents struggle with.

Retain Leads — 50% of all insurance shoppers are on a mobile device. Our designs automatically adjust to fit all screen sizes.

Expand Your Reach — Get found in 50 local online business directories consumers use to find professionals like insurance agents.

Great First Impression — With 30+ website designs choices and customization to match your branding, you get a unique site.

Promote Inbound Marketing — Custom content writing for service pages and monthly blog articles on topics important to insurance shoppers.

Expert Digital Strategy — Quarterly meetings with a website analyst to assess your website’s health and local performance.

Professional Guidance — Website specialists walk you through the setup process, host your site, and monitor its performance.

Step 2 — EZLynx Consumer Quoting

As consumers find your website, they are funneled through our various lead capture forms.  We have made extensive updates to EZLynx Consumer Quoting over the past few years so that a single portal can now map leads into EZLynx for any line of business.

Step 2 - EZLynx Consumer QuotingYour home and auto leads can give the consumer the option to complete a full online quote, but that is an entirely optional process.  Meanwhile, your leads for other lines of businesses go directly into EZLynx without distracting or confusing the consumer with references to home and auto quotes.  Commercial leads even create commercial applicants in EZLynx automatically.

Capture Leads — Collect leads by providing consumers option to generate real-time comparative quotes on your website or provide their basic contact info.

Retain Mobile Leads — 30% of people seeking quotes are on mobile devices. Our system detects & optimizes their quoting experience.

Maximize Social Media Impact — Offer comparative quoting directly on your agency’s Facebook page to increase social media leads.

Improve Customer Service — Set automatic follow up emails for customers who exit a non-completed quote form.

Stay Organized — Consumer risk information and all quotes automatically populate in your EZLynx account for easy access.

Step 3 — EZLynx Sales Center

Our latest product is going to revolutionize the way you manage your sales process.  Best of all, it will keep you centered in EZLynx with Rating, Policy Management, and our suite of communication tools right at your fingertips.

Step 3 - EZLynx Sales CenterStreamline Your Agency’s Sales Pipeline

Have you ever quoted a lead you didn’t write or had trouble tracking X-Dates, close rates, or point of sale information in your agency? Sales Center is focused on growing your business by streamlining your sales pipeline. From identifying missed sales opportunities to servicing existing customers, the EZLynx ONE PLATFORM™ helps you manage the full customer lifecycle, round accounts, and increase new business!

Easily Access Data

With easy access to pipeline data and relevant information, your sales managers can access the success of their producers and workflows. Sales dashboards allow you to quickly see close ratios for producers, deal aging, and assess your entire sales process to make informed decisions for your agency. Whether you are using Sales Center for true new business or rounding accounts, everything you need to know about an account is in one place.

Step 3 - EZLynx Sales CenterForecast Sales

Quote information from EZLynx fills into sales center to provide you the estimated value of each deal. As it moves through the pipeline, the estimated value becomes more accurate. This allows you to forecast your sales for month’s end. Follow each producer to make sure they are on target to hit sales goals and maximize agency revenue!

Track & Manage Sales Task

Sales Center is part of the EZLynx one platform center, so all your data is in one place. Track and manage the sales tasks through the Agency Workspace. Sales managers can follow the progression of a customer through the entire process. This means that identifying opportunities, sales, quoting, customer management, and renewal management all happen in one system. No more need for cumbersome spreadsheets, multiple systems, or lost opportunities. All your data is managed from a single platform.

Focus on Generating Revenue

Each day, a producer comes to work knowing each opportunity to target and the next task to close the deal. This allows producers to focus on revenue-generating activities and maximize their time. Tasks can be assigned to anyone in the agency and managed through Sales Center. Everything is accessible from the customer’s main EZLynx account.

Step 4 — EZLynx Rating Engine

The days of entering consumer information individually into each carrier’s system is over. One-time data entry in EZLynx yields dozens of comparative quotes in just seconds. You can even log into your EZLynx account on your mobile device to access quotes on the go.

Step 4 - EZLynx Rating Engine

We spent our early days perfecting the game of real-time rating and in doing so created the leading rater in the industry. Our web-based technology allows you to get instantaneous quotes from over 169 carriers in 48 states. Comparative cross-carrier quoting has never been this easy, and best of all, it is a seamless part of EZLynx Sales Center, EZLynx Management System, and EZLynx Retention Center.

As you work new prospects through Sales Center, you’ll be able to seamlessly tap into EZLynx Rating Engine as you transition that lead into a new customer.

Carrier Access — Instantly link to your carriers. We offer support with over 169 carriers across the continental US.

Protects Customers — Quickly deliver premium & coverage options via email with a secure connection for customer safety.

Streamline Renewals — Customers can update risk information securely online prior to re-quoting to streamline renewals.

Increased Productivity — Pre-fill & save quote templates with common answers, producer codes, and underwriting information.

Effortless Data Entry — Save time during quoting by pulling driver and vehicle data from LexisNexis® Data Pre-fill.

Protects Agents — Cloud-based system records all user activities for custom reports and to avoid E&O claims.

Step 5 — EZLynx Management System

At the heart of EZLynx, our Management System, paired with Sales Center, now combines both your book of business and your CRM. As your agency grows, it becomes increasingly important that your data aids in your daily workflow rather than hinder it.

Step 5 - EZLynx Management SystemEZLynx Management System allows you to maximize your agency’s potential by increasing your ability to retain current customers while acquiring new business.

Find all of your customer’s quotes, policies, and documents in one organized place and easily remarket with up-to-date information that is synced from your daily policy downloads.

Keep Existing Data — Stop stressing. Data conversion experts will import existing management system information painlessly.

Reduce E&O Exposure — Record everything, automatically. All notes, documents, emails, and tasks are linked to your client’s file.

Improve Customer Service — Use sticky notes, tasks, and reminders to streamline your workflow and maximize productivity.

Grow the Business — Reduce time with pre-filled forms and synced carrier information so that you can focus on growing your business.

Track Profits — Insurance accounting tracks premiums and commissions so that you can understand your book and plan for the future.

Step 6 — EZLynx Client Center

Tapping into the vast stores of customer data in your system, EZLynx Client Center sits on top of your Agency Website so that your clients can quickly access their policy details, shared documents, and submit change requests and questions.

Step 6 - EZLynx Client CenterJust like you, insurance clients now expect some level of online access to their account.  More importantly, it saves you time to focus on revenue-generating activities by letting your clients perform the more basic customer service tasks like printing auto ID cards, to more complex service tasks like generating certificate holder for a commercial policy on their own.

We have exciting plans this year to further expand Client Center to make it even more useful to you and your clients.

Improve Customer Service — Customers can access policies on mobile devices & desktops from any Internet enabled device.

Exceed Expectations — keep your online shop open to customers 24/7/365 and give customers access to their own policies.

Decrease Response Time — Activity notifications are instantly sent to agents when customers electronically request changes.

Increase Productivity — Reducing general service requests frees up time for agents to focus on larger issues.

Reduce E&O Exposure — Client activities and communication is logged in EZLynx for quick access.

Step 7 — EZLynx Retention Center

Introduced 2 years ago, EZLynx Retention Center has redefined the renewal process at agencies using this solution.

Step 7 - EZLynx Retention CenterWith its patented technology, Retention Center can review and prioritize all daily renewals from high to low risk of attrition. This allows your employees to focus only on those renewals that are at greatest risk of a loss—all from a single screen in EZLynx.

Agents who implement Retention Center on average enjoy more than a 5 points increase in their retention.

Focused Strategy — Become proactive in your agency’s retention process to review every customer’s account at renewal.

Improved Customer Service — Communicate with every customer prior to the renewal to reinforce your agency’s value.

Greater Productivity — Utilize new technology to conduct and manage renewal process without increasing staff.

Expedite Remarketing — Utilize the policy sync feature to rapidly update a customer’s information and submit for quotes.

Expand Insight — Instant view into price and comparison of current policy and renewal to identify any changes.

Boost Revenue — Each additional point of retention corresponds to a specific dollar amount for each agency of increased profit.

Step 8 — EZLynx Communication Center

Encompassing all aspects of our product is EZLynx Communication Center.  The ability to effectively communicate with your prospects and customers is essential to running an effective agency and is seamlessly used by all pieces of our customer lifecycle suite.

Step 8 - EZLynx Communication CenterCommunication Center is a bundle of digital communication tools that allow to you to email and text message with consumers directly from EZLynx. From completing the sales process with an electronic signature, to keeping your Microsoft Outlook inbox organized and in sync with EZLynx, Communication Center is at the center of your day-to-day workflow.

Drive Sales & Grow your Book — Leverage the power of EZLynx Reporting to define targeted and timely cross-sell email campaigns to increase your policy-per-customer average.

Improve Retention — Pro-actively communicate with clients via Text Message or Email to increase retention and improve the overall customer service experience.

Build Loyalty — Show customers you care by setting date-sensitive delivery for holidays, birthdays, or policy terms.

Seeing the Bigger Picture

While we are certainly excited about the release of EZLynx Sales Center this year, hopefully you see that it is just another piece to a larger vision we have for our industry. Your success is our validation of the roadmap we have set for our company over the past decade, and it will continue to be our benchmark for the decade to come. Be sure to take a look at our 2017 Roadmap if you haven’t already!

You can login to EZLynx here.


EZLynx Says Goodbye to one of our own

Bijesh KIt is with heavy hearts that we announce the loss of a member of the EZLynx team. Bijesh Karuvarathodiyil passed away unexpectedly this week at home with his family.

Working tirelessly behind the scenes, Bijesh had a hand in every successful product release at EZLynx for almost 3 years as one of our project managers and security specialists. His quiet dedication directly contributed to our success as a company, and indirectly to the success our customers have had using our products. Prior to joining EZLynx, Bijesh worked for Cognizant, Cisco Systems, and IBM.

We are lucky to have had Bijesh at EZLynx, however briefly. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Jwelna, and his two sons, Adit and Aman. He will be dearly missed.

For those of you interested in helping the family during this time, a site for donations has been set up here.


Certificate Self-Generation in EZLynx Client Center

In the next few days we will be rolling out a new feature that lets commercial insureds issue their own Certificates of Insurance from agency selected templates at any time, from anywhere, 24/7.  The client will be able to add a holder to a specific certificate template, generate the certificate for that holder, and print or save it accordingly.

Keep in mind, insureds will not be able to make any changes to the Certificate Master. Should they require changes or additional wording, the tool allows them to send the holder information to their agent and request their agent issue the certificate instead. This feature is a great fit for any agency that has heavy commercial volume and deal with trusted clients that frequently require certificates.

How Does it Work?

Once enabled for your agency, your administrator will be able to indicate the certificate types and carriers that they want to allow their agents and CSRs to enable for this feature. These are the global agency-wide rules that control how other users in your agency can use the feature.

Client Center Agent Settings Certificate Tab

For those users in your agency that have been enabled to use the feature, they will see a new option for newly created certificate masters (previously created certificate masters will not work). By selecting this option, users can enable a specific certificate master for a specific applicant, granting that applicant the ability to add their own holders using that master. It’s as simple as that.

Client Center Certificate Master Agent Facing Actions Dropdown

After an agent has enable a certificate master for a client, whenever that client logs into EZLynx Client Center, they will see a new line item in their Documents area giving them the option to add a new certificate holder.

Client Center Add New Holder

When the client clicks this option, we will walk them through a few questions to either add the holder, or else identify that their request requires additional follow-up by the agent. In all scenarios, the system will always notify the agent both inside EZLynx and by email whenever a client adds a new certificate holder.

Client Center Add New Holder Step 1

What’s Next?

If you currently have EZLynx Client Center and would like to have this feature enabled for your agency, please let us know below. We will need to know which user should be enabled as your Client Center administrator, as well as which user(s) should be given access to enable individual applicants for access to add holders. As you start to get a feel for how this works, please do not hesitate to return to this post and share your feedback below.


EZLynx Reporting Gets Supercharged, New Tools for Deeper Analysis

EZLynx, an industry-leading Agency Management System and Comparative Rating vendor for the independent insurance industry, announces new reporting tools to increase the usability of information provided within their ONE PLATFORM™ suite. These enhancements include optimizations and new features that will benefit agencies who want to take full advantage of their system to make intelligent, data-driven business decisions.

“Our primary goal in this update is to make the reports in EZLynx more intuitive. Agents should be able to get actionable information quickly and easily. These updates put EZLynx yet another step beyond our competition.” says John McKay, Director of Sales at EZLynx. “Think of it as management system reporting on steroids, now with the ability to schedule custom reports out to users or teams. This not only brings significant enhancements to the Reporting area in EZLynx, but the underlying technology will also allow us to bring the full force of our reporting capabilities directly into other areas of the product, including Retention Center® and Accounting.”

While the latest enhancements have placed an increased focus on usability, there are also several new important features. “We are very excited about the report scheduling tool,” McKay continues. “With this feature, agents can have reports scheduled to automatically run on a recurring basis. This should save a lot of time for people who run a specific report on a regular basis. In addition, being able to slice and dice the data is a request EZLynx has now fulfilled by way of a Master Report. This will give agents full control of almost every field inside of EZLynx and allow users to apply filters, sorting, charts, paging, and groupings to create custom reports which users can save and run as needed for future use.”

Let’s Take a Closer Look at EZLynx Reporting

The Applicant Summary Report shows agents demographic information on their current policy holders. This report includes valuable information like Active Policies and Average Premium per Customer as well as summary statistics on gender, education level, and marital status.

EZLynx Reporting - Applicant Summary Report

Coming Soon to EZLynx Reporting

The ability to Email a report to your colleagues without leaving the reports page is coming soon and will help with large files that take a long time to export. With this feature you can have the report emailed to you and your coworkers so that you can continue working while the export process runs.

EZLynx Reporting - Email a Report

Scheduled Reports is a new feature that will enable a report to run on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. You will no longer have to log in to the reports page to run the same report each month; simply have it scheduled to be delivered to your inbox!

EZLynx Reporting - Schedule a Report

These changes are only the beginning. As a company, we are committed to continually improving our product based on the needs of our customers, and that commitment extends to Reporting where we have a grand vision that spans far past 2016. From new reports that show unsold business, to visualizations showing policy trends over time, Reporting has an exciting future at EZLynx!


How to Leverage the Advantages of being an Independent Agent

Many independent insurance agents feel the tremendous pressure from the behemoth directs, captives, and high volume shops that tend to dominate the airwaves and the search results. While there is certainly reason to be concerned about the impact these companies have on the smaller independent agents, there is also much to be optimistic about.

While directs, captives, and high volume shops have advantages in terms of the online experience they can offer and the marketing dollars at their disposal, they all suffer from the same glaring disadvantages as well. To put it broadly, they will never have these key competitive advantages that define the independent agent. EZLynx, for our part, strives to provide tools and services that only serve to maximize those advantages and minimize the disadvantages. Here are some tips to help your agency thrive

1. Continue to provide a personalized experience

National brands are forced to provide a compelling online experience to counteract the fact that they cannot provide the personalized, hands-on service that a local independent insurance agent can provide. Continue to make yourself known as a trusted agent in your community.

EZLynx is continuously enhancing our suite of consumer-facing solutions to help you even the online playing field with these national brands. We provide personalized website services, integrated consumer quoting, and a customer self-servicing portal.

2. Adopt local search for your website

The cornerstone of a successful local marketing strategy requires effective search engine optimization (SEO). Establish a solid local SEO strategy. It’s important to realize that an independent agent cannot compete nationwide against large insurance comparison websites or carrier websites for broad search phrases like “auto insurance”, but they’ll always have an advantage at the local level, e.g. “auto insurance agents near Dallas, TX”.

With the Gold-level of EZLynx Agency Websites, we’ll take care of some of the local SEO best practices for your agency. We’ll also hold ourselves accountable by providing you with quarterly website performance reports – even if it’s bad news!

3. Grow your network

Network with other local businesses, such as attorneys, accountants and other business professionals. Send them referrals, and hopefully they’ll do the same. Local businesses in your city likely host networking events. Attend as many as possible, and bring your memorable print collateral with you to hand out.

4. Increase yearly touches

Utilize communication solutions such as email marketing to help with your agency’s retention. The more yearly touches, the better chances you’ll keep a customer for life. We all know it’s cheaper to retain a customer than to acquire a new customer, but we rarely take the steps necessary to achieve a high retention rate.

Check in from time to time to see if they are happy with their current coverages, send happy birthday emails, weather alerts, or periodic emails with tips and community updates.  Just be sure you don’t go overboard – no one likes spam. EZLynx Email Campaigns, part of our Communication Center bundle, is a great way to handle sending all of these kinds of emails directly from EZLynx.  We have exciting plans for enhancing this tool throughout the year.

If you’re ready to take your retention efforts to the next level, ask your sales rep about EZLynx Retention Center. This retention workflow management tool and consulting service simplifies the tedious task of working through your renewals for the day, ensuring each customer is touched throughout the process. This is the time when you are at most risk of losing the customer, so you cannot afford to hold your breath and just hope they renew.

5. Embrace in new technology

Bring your agency up-to-date with a complete customer lifecycle solution like EZLynx, which includes a feature-rich agency management system, comparative rater, agency website, marketing & communication tools, service tools, and more. While we certainly think we provide the best set of solutions, regardless of which tools you use, you cannot afford to put your head in the sand when it comes to new technology and the advantages it brings.

6. Focus on streamlining your agency’s process

The sales process involves a lot of back and forth communication.  Prospects are often worked on by multiple users in your agency, so it’s all too easy for tasks to be duplicated and communication to be repeated. It’s important that you have a well-defined process for working new leads and processing them through the sales pipeline. Make sure you have the tools to help those in your agency collaborate and stay organized.

The Agency Workspace in EZLynx is a great way to keep track of due dates, review notifications, and create notes and tasks for any applicant without leaving the page you’re currently working on. This simple feature spans across all parts of EZLynx, giving you easy access no matter what you’re doing.

Later this year we’ll be announcing some exciting updates related to how you manage your sales workflow to help streamline your agency’s process even further!

Putting it all Together

It’s no mistake that by combining the full suite of EZLynx products and services, you have essentially minimized the perceived advantages that these national brands have over independent agents.

Learn more about how EZLynx can help your agency be more successful.


Conquered: The Data Migration Challenge

A common concern we encounter from our customers is the risk of losing their data when moving to a new management system. As you amass more information, maintaining your data becomes increasingly important. EZLynx has developed a proven process to help our customers migrate their data to EZLynx Management System – a process in which our customers have been happy to talk about. Nothing is left behind due to EZLynx’s effective conversion process.

Assessment

When you’ve opted for data transfer, EZLynx maintains constant contact with your team. Your data is customized into a conversion plan suited to your unique needs. EZLynx’s success is based on our customer’s happiness, and all of our actions are directed towards protecting your data.

The Data Back-up

Once you have contacted your previous vendor, we streamline your files for conversion. Many formats are covered.

Using Old System Downloads

Additionally, all of your previous downloads will remain in your old system. In the event of a backup emergency, you’ll already have access to historical files. Once EZLynx has begun its process, your attachments, notes, reminders and tasks will be similarly logged. After this, information forwarded to EZLynx will be recorded.

The Conversion Process

EZLynx Data Conversion ProcessWithin eight weeks, your files are tested, cleaned up, reviewed and successfully converted to our system. As your data is analyzed, everything is accounted for, and you’ll be kept informed throughout the entire process.

Sample batch conversions are used to maintain accuracy, and any missing information is generated within a list by referencing current data.

With such a process, full visibility provides an enhanced approach to data migration. Any areas needing attention are discussed before total conversion, reducing any chance of “faulty” conversions. Quality verification is signed off on, and the process is never deemed “finished” until your word grants it.

Vanquishing Fear with Knowledge

Our time-tested-and-true processes guard your data throughout the conversion process, removing inconsistencies while safeguarding it from loss. This is just one of many reasons why we consistently achieve customer satisfaction scores over 95% year in and year out!

“My biggest concern was ‘Will my data convert?’, and I’ve got to tell you, EZLynx was there every step of the way. We had a pre-conference call with how the whole conversion process would work and they made me feel very comfortable. Throughout the entire process my EZLynx representative was always there to guide me through… Everything that EZLynx promised that I would get, I got it and better.”

-Phil Klein, Phil Klein Insurance Group

It may be time to make the change. After all, once a fear has been realized and logically countered, there isn’t much room left for fear itself, is there? Leave a comment below, or take a look at our Data Conversion overview for more information.


New Email Campaign Enhancements Coming Soon

New Communication Center TabAfter the holidays, as you start to prepare your marketing efforts for the new year, those of you that have our EZLynx Marketing Campaigns product will see a few changes. To begin with, you will soon find a new icon in EZLynx. This updated menu will be your hub for everything related to your email campaign settings, templates, and campaign status.

Enhanced Design & Content Library

One of the concerns we frequently heard from agents is that they don’t have the time or expertise to design professional email campaigns, as well as come up with engaging content that their customers and prospects would want to read.

We have started to solve this challenge by building a design and content library that can be inserted into any email campaign. Choose from a library of categorized designs and simply click to insert the layout into your new campaign or template. With over 200 articles, it’s easy to build a newsletter, sales email, weather alert, or safety tip from scratch. The editor has also been enhanced to include common customization options such as font type, font size, background color, image upload, and more.

Design LibraryBest of all, you can insert these pre-written content samples completely independent from your design selection. The content is inserted wherever you place your cursor, making it easy to mix and match design and content.

Once you have inserted sample content into your template, you can easily edit the content to meet your specific needs. For example, you may want to add a link to your website, or you may want to include some additional content that is specific to your local community.

Shared Template Library

Another concern that many of our users have today is that we have two completely separate campaign tools – one for sending out bulk email blasts, and another one for sending out campaigns to individual applicants.

New Campaign WorkflowWhile the ability to put an individual recipient on an email campaign has not changed, starting in late December all campaigns will being using one common template library. Not only will this clear up some confusion about the two functions, but it will also open up new features, such as the ability to send a multi-step (“Drip”) campaign to a single applicant or a bulk list of recipients.

The new campaign workflow makes it possible to build these single or multi-step campaigns on the fly, and you can quickly toggle between each step in the series.

Greater Visibility

With a unified email campaign platform, you will be able to see exactly what communications are being sent out by your agency. See which emails are coming up, what has recently gone out, and get an estimate on how effective each campaign was by tracking open rates.

Campaign Overview

What’s Next

Communication is essential to running a successful business.  This first update will lay the foundation for where we want to take our email campaign tool next year.  From list building to powerful automation, we know that the more effectively you can communicate with your clients, the more productive you will be.

We will send out a notification to our current Marketing Campaign customers once we begin the migration process to this new tool to ensure that all of your existing templates are moved over.

Need help getting your templates set up or planning your email marketing strategy for 2016? We may be able to help with that too…


Enhanced Reporting in EZLynx

We are excited to start sharing details of our new enhanced reporting features in EZLynx, which will be slowly rolled out over the next month. The reports you know and love are improved, and we’ve added master reports to make it possible to build a report for just about anything.

A successful business runs on good data. That’s why it has been a top priority for us this year to make extracting meaningful and actionable data from EZLynx simple, flexible, and powerful.

Report Basics

If you currently have access to reporting in EZLynx, you will be automatically enabled for these new enhancements as they are rolled out over the next month. The new and improved reports will include the following basic functionality:

  • No date restrictions
  • Export to an Excel or CSV file
  • Hover over any column header to:
    • Reorder – drag left handle (green box) to move column to a new position
    • Adjust width – drag right handle (red box) left or right to adjust column width
  • Replace or Remove existing filters
  • All reports, except Standard Commission reports, reflect account activity through midnight of prior day.

Types of Reports

EZLynx Reporting - Types of ReportsThere are three basic types of reports in the new version:

Standard Reports

Standard reports are the same reports you know and love, but with a new look and navigation structure.

Master Reports

A Master Report is used as a starting point to filter very specific data with a wide variety of options. Once the desired data is retrieved, it can be saved and shared as a Custom Report.

Custom Reports

Custom Reports are unique reports that you have customized and saved for later use. To create a Custom Report, select a Master Report, and use the various options available to retrieve specific, detailed data. Custom Reports can also be shared with others in your agency.

The Master Report

The true power of our enhanced reporting is in the Master Report.  For example, clicking on the Applicant Master Report gives you information on all of the applicants in your system. From here, you can filter and sort the data to create powerful advanced reports.

Applicant Master Report

From here you can quickly filter down your applicants based on any of the fields available. For example, you may want to generate a list of your oldest customers in order to send out a loyalty thank you card. What’s more, you can filter based on policy information as well.  Filter or sort that loyalty list by number of policies, for example.

Policy Master Report with GraphUse the Policy Master List to quickly build a chart from your data by Line of Business and Annualized Premium, giving you insight at not only the LOB breakdown of your policies, but also how much revenue each line is bringing in.

Data Driven Business Decisions

The flexibility and power to dig into your data in order to discover business insight and sales opportunity is endless. Break down the distribution of your book by LOB, Personal vs Commercial, Carriers, Producer, etc. and make data driven decisions about where you want to focus your sales team in the next quarter. Take your customer data and filter it down by inactive customers, quotes without policies, customers with homeowners but no auto, and use that data to drive your sales and marketing to new heights.

You can save any custom report that you create, and you can even share a custom report with others in your agency.  Coming in a future release, you’ll be able to build a custom report and set it to email you the results of that report every week.

Once you see these updates in action, we want to hear your feedback. We believe that useful data is an essential part of doing business, so this is only the beginning!


Keeping up with Insurance Trends

Keeping up with Insurance TrendsBeing up-to-date with insurance trends is a major priority for insurance agents and others working in the field. It’s important to understand how these trends affect the industry, now and in the future. There are a few ways to follow the trends while increasing your knowledge base. Here are a few ways to accomplish this:

Google Alerts

Google Alerts is a great interface that allows you to define what types of content you are looking for based on keywords and phrases. Whenever something new is released, you will receive an alert notifying you of the article or piece of information. This helps save time and is very efficient.

Read Insurance Blogs (Like this one!) and Journals

Reading popular insurance blogs and industry trade journals is an effective way of increasing your knowledge on a number of topics while staying in tune with current news. While most trade journals require a subscription, you can obtain a wealth of information with free options like PropertyCasualty360.com. Insurance Journal offers free downloading of articles for a certain time, so you have access to this information in a timely manner, even if you don’t have a subscription. Business Insurance also offers free articles for a certain time period. Another excellent resource that should be read by all insurance professionals is Emphasis, distributed by Towers Watson. Available every quarter, this is one of the “go-to” publications for higher-level executives, which can help you move up the ladder of success, and of course keeping up to date with the EZLynx blog won’t hurt either.

Attend Conferences

There’s nothing like attending a conference to network with others and gain insight on the industry. Depending on your specialization, there are a number of events you can attend. Events in America carries an entire listing of insurance conferences and conventions held throughout the year which can be beneficial to your growth. Just remember to attend the sessions!

Follow Social Media Influencers

Every major #insurance platform has a social media platform. Twitter is popular within the industry for connecting agents and information. Once you determine which influencers are most beneficial to you, following them on social media will keep you in the know.

Attend Association Events

Your association should have both local and national events where you can get information specific to your area and locate resources that can assist your development. The association is designed to offer workshops, speakers and other informal gatherings that will allow you to build a network of like-minded individuals that can keep you in the loop of new developments within the industry, and also writes publication pieces that may be of interest.

Make Time

Identifying how to keep up with trends in your industry and expanding your knowledge base is the first step. Making time to apply these resources into your schedule can be challenging. Schedule some time on a daily or weekly basis to read or network. Your time can be maximized by reading when commuting to work, listening to a podcast of an article, or utilizing your break to skim documents. This will give you an idea of the items that require more in-depth reading while eliminating the fluff. This will also help you determine whether or not the publication is one that can assist you in acquiring the information you desire. If not, it’s time to find a new resource.

These are just a few ways to enhance your knowledge and stay current on trends within the insurance industry. Using EZLynx Management System can also add to your productivity while providing the resources and information you need for efficient operations and customer service. Best of all, our cloud-based platform means you can keep a pulse on your business while you are out of the office, whether it’s a family vacation, attending an insurance conference, or out meeting with a client!