9 October 2019

Willis Towers Watson Networks – Localism in Action

Marketing Team

If you are an independent insurance broker, you cannot fail to have noticed the impacts of consolidation in the industry. Local, independent brokers are being acquired at an alarming rate, as big names seek to grow through acquisition. But if you examine that formula in context, it is completely at odds with what is going in the UK and the lifestyle that many millions of people are seeking to promote.

Why should a local, independent broker and keystone of local community life consider a Network relationship, how does it help in keeping you relevant and benefit your local environment?

Insurance is a fast-moving world of consolidation, regulation and change. Past events dictate that the insurance broker of tomorrow is more than a transactor and more of a trusted advisor. Clients are more demanding, risks are more complex, and the traditional risk now has new global threats to combat.

Willis Towers Watson Networks’ provide a depth and level of resources that enhances your local knowledge. Clients who trade overseas can be serviced locally. As an insurance broker, you are the epitome of local and global with the Network resources to draw upon.

This combination ensures just how powerful our insurance broker network proposition is, right here, right now

Eight years ago, in 2011, the Localism Act came into force. It encouraged people, across the country, to really think about their local community and what matters within it; to map out those assets of intrinsic local value that should be preserved through community effort. As part of this, it empowered local communities to bid for Assets of Community Value – buildings, land, sites that have local potential, retail assets such as the local Post Office or the library service – and potentially buy those as a community.

One of the key assets that various communities have saved is the local pub – a hub of the community and life within towns, parishes and villages. To date, 120 pubs have been bought by their local community and are now being run as a community-owned asset.

Just a few decades ago, the local insurance brokerage was a key part of the local community. It was where everyone went to secure the insurance they required for protection. Alas, the Localism Act does not cover businesses like this. But perhaps, if you look at what Willis Towers Watson Networks does from a different viewpoint, we are localism in action.

By joining the Willis Towers Watson Network, a broker can continue to deliver the local service that communities crave. A broker can still focus entirely on its local area and that area’s needs, delivering personal contact, free from call centre switchboards and confusing online forms. It can do this because it has the backing of Willis Towers Watson’s insurer connections and our resource backing. Using our access to market, our training, our marketing collateral and services and our global presence, an insurance broker can stay independent, fighting off the consolidators, by actually delivering what many local areas now crave – that return to localism.

If you do not see this as a power of nature, think again. Focus on campaigns such as Mary Portas’s ‘Mary Queen of the High Street’ plus the very fact that the Government is telling communities that they need to reinforce their local identities, as this will be of paramount importance after Brexit. Communities have begun to fall apart and businesses like the local insurance brokerage comprise a glue that can hold them together. Local communities have many fights on their hands but are finding strength for these battles by coming together. Having local people, offering local services, is key to much of this. The true local broker, who is a busy bee in their community, generating goodwill and presenting all that a call centre cannot, can be a force of nature. They just need the right insurance products to back their efforts. That is where Willis Towers Watson comes in.

All the localism trends point to the fact that there has probably not been a better time in the last thirty years to grasp the nettle as a truly local broker, but one with global insurance power to their elbow. It is a heady mix, if you get your marketing strategies right and can really demonstrate that you care about your community. If proving this. appeals to you, then there is no better place than the Willis Towers Watson Network to be, as big insurance award winners like the thriving Ascend Broking, based in Chelmsford, have demonstrated.

Become a Network Member, or remain a Network Member of our network, ask us for our help in marketing your brokerage as a local hero and the next few years could be very bright for you. Local brokers are community assets and ones that the Localism Act might not be able to cover, but which Willis Towers Watson Networks can most definitely support. Together, we can dynamically deliver localism in action.

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