With just over two months until the Annual Enrollment Period begins, it’s a good time to make sure you’re fully prepared and ready to sell.

Follow these steps to ensure you’re ready by October 15.

Listen to this article:

1 | Get Contracted

Talk to a Ritter specialist and make sure you can offer everything your clients may ask for – both products and brands. Carriers can sometimes take upwards of six weeks for processing, so don’t delay contracting. Last-minute cramming is a sure way to miss out on Medicare’s busiest selling season! Find the most competitive plans in your area with our Medicare Quote Engine.

Don’t forget that cross-selling can round out your clients’ MAPD plans and fill coverage gaps. Just keep in mind that CMS prohibits you from promoting non-health related products when meeting with a client to discuss Medicare Advantage plans, so you’ll need to schedule a follow-up appointment.

2 | Complete Insurance Certifications

Before you can sell for any carriers, you must complete annual CMS compliance training. AHIP and Gorman Sales Sentinel are two common methods to get certified. Most carriers accept one or both of these options.

Pro tip: Many carriers offer an AHIP discount when you certify through their online portal!

After compliance training, you’ll need to complete 2019 product certifications for each MA, MAPD, and PDP carrier you are appointed with. Some carriers may also require face-to-face training in addition to their online product exams.

You can find a list of carrier requirements in Ritter’s Certification Center!

3 | Order Supplies

Once a carrier deems you “ready to sell,” most carriers will allow you to pre-order enrollment kits for the upcoming product year. Participating carriers will have information in their broker portals regarding pre-ordering. To find info on ordering supplies, select a carrier and then look for “Supplies” in the menu on the right-hand side.

Unfortunately, Ritter isn’t able to tell you if you’re ready to sell with the carrier; you’ll have to verify your status on your own for compliance reasons. If you need an agent writing number, you can also get that from the carrier.

4 | Gather Carrier Information

Familiarize yourself with each carrier you are appointed with now so you can save valuable time during AEP. Brush up on their online tools, phone numbers for support, and the submission processes you’ll have to follow (including fax numbers).

Pro tip: Create a spreadsheet with important carrier info in one place so it’s readily accessible.

Pro tip: Create a spreadsheet with important carrier info in one place so it’s readily accessible.

Carriers sometimes offer webinars on how to use their online portals and tools, such as e-Apps and online submissions. You can find these on Ritter’s events page or each carrier’s online broker portal.

5 | Consider Insurance Leads and Referrals

No matter if this is your first AEP, or you’re a seasoned veteran, there’s always an opportunity to get in front of more people during AEP.

There’s always a chance to get in front of more people during AEP

Boost your online lead generation with Medicareful.com, Ritter’s online consumer-facing quote tool for Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, and prescription drug plans. With your own personalized Medicareful link, consumers can reach you with the CMS-accepted request-to-contact form. Plus, with the brand-new option for clients to self-enroll, you can even make money in your sleep!

Or maybe you’d like to take advantage of Ritter Referral? If one of your clients needs a product you aren’t able to sell, you can refer them to Ritter, and we’ll help them out. You’ll have peace of mind knowing they’re well taken care of, and your business is secure!

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Ritter, as well as the carriers you are appointed with, are here to help you succeed. Think of us as your coach rather than just cheering fans. If you have questions or need help, don’t hesitate to let us know.

Note: If you’re not registered with Ritter Insurance Marketing but want to use our online tools, please register here.