I grew up in a small city on the Ohio River referred to as East Liverpool. It is situated in Ohio on the junction of Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. When I used to be rising up it had a inhabitants of about 22,000. Today the inhabitants has dropped to simply over 13,000. However, some very distinctive and notable folks have come from my city. I wish to let you know about considered one of them who realized the that means of offering worth for his purchasers so nicely that he went on to grow to be the best life insurance coverage salesman ever.
His identify was Ben Feldman (1912 – 1993) and over his 50 yr profession promoting insurance coverage for one firm, his gross sales quantity exceeded $1.eight billion, with over a 3rd of it coming after he turned 65. And, he did it by promoting out of his workplace in East Liverpool and never some main monetary capital metropolis like York Life Insurance Co” alt=”New York”>New York.
Ben Feldman got here from the sleepy little city of Salineville, Ohio, the place he began his enterprise profession promoting hen and eggs for $ 5 per week. As an aspiring businessperson, he wished to enter the insurance coverage area however was unable to go the essential Equitable Life Insurance Company’s aptitude take a look at.
In typical Feldman trend, he offered himself to Equitable, and commenced amassing premiums on meager nickel and dime insurance policies. In 1942, he joined New York Life, and opened a small workplace within the Little Building, on the Diamond, in downtown East Liverpool. It was from this location that he started a relentless quest to attain membership within the prestigious Million Dollar Round Table. He made it in 1946.
Little did anybody suspect that he would far surpass the million greenback mark, nevertheless, in 1955, he offered $10 million in protection. He then started promoting a million a month, then one million per week, and in 1971 wrote contracts for over $65 million. He then gunned for $10 million a month and in 1983, with the assistance of his two sons, Marvin and Richard, he offered $148 million of insurance coverage.
Feldman was an innovator, who made it simple for his purchasers to grasp the complexities of the Federal Estate tax legislation, which desecrated the fortunes of numerous rich people within the interval that adopted World War II. Long earlier than pc graphics, he created intelligent hand-drawn charts, illustrating the necessity for all times insurance coverage to guard a person’s property from the federal government. He would guide himself on airplane flights, subsequent to a possible shopper, the place upon he would open his temporary case, full of $100, $500 and $1,000 payments, alongside along with his charts and graphs. The concept was to entice his neighbor to note the cash and comment, “Is that real money?” “Yes,” Ben would reply, “but I’m not afraid to carry it, because it’s insured.” With such a gap, a gross sales presentation was a lay-up.
A lover of luxurious cars, Feldman would usually be seen racing up and down the highways that hyperlink Pittsburgh and Youngstown in his Cadillac Eldorado. It was inside this 50-mile hall that he offered nearly all of his insurance policies. Often outfitted with a CB radio and a automobile phone – lengthy earlier than anybody had heard of such a tool – he dealt with rejection like none different.
A favourite Feldman technique was to strategy the workplace of a busy govt and ask for an appointment. The response from a frazzled secretary would often be, “I’m sorry, his time is too valuable.” Ben would ask, “Is it worth $100 a minute?” “At least!” can be the reply, to which the response (accompanied by 5 model new 100 greenback payments,) can be, “Well I’d like to buy five minutes.”
Even when Ben Feldman would go deep sea fishing, he would spend his time creating new gross sales methods, memorizing the complete New York Life Insurance price guide. And, he would arm himself with pithy little phrases, designed to beat probably the most troublesome problem. To the potential shopper who mentioned, “I believe in term insurance.” Ben would reply, “Term insurance is temporary, but your problem is permanent.” “I can’t afford the premium,” would invoke, “You are already broke and don’t even know it.”
Following within the footsteps of such a legend was not simple for Marv and Rich Feldman, however they dealt with the problem nicely as Marv turned president of the Million Dollar Table in 2001, and Rich excelled in numerous endeavors, together with “drag racing,” of all issues.
Now you could be pondering to your self that Ben will need to have been some form of famous person, good wanting, quick speaking, form of man – however you would be improper. Ben was a brief, stout, balding and spoke slowly with a definite lisp. He by no means completed highschool. He was so shy that years later when he was requested to talk at insurance industry conferences, he would solely comply with if a display screen was erected between him and the viewers.
But, he was a legend when it got here to creating some extent to know each enterprise proprietor in his area. He did his homework first and realized all he might about his potential prospects in order that by the point he met with them (usually on a “cold call”) he was prepared with the best Value Development Questions. He did not at all times promote straight away however he by no means gave up. I as soon as heard him say that for years he did not cease working for the day till he made not less than one sale – irrespective of how late it obtained.
One of favourite tales about Ben is a few outstanding actual property developer. Ben tried for weeks to get in to see the busy man however was at all times unsuccessful. One day, Ben stopped in chilly and handed the developer’s assistant the envelope with 5 $100 payments and requested her to provide it to her boss. He informed her “If I don’t have a good idea for him, he can keep the money.” He obtained in and offered a $14 million coverage. Years later when Ben realized the person want extra insurance coverage because of the unprecedented progress of his firm; he was as soon as once more stymied by the person’s insistence that he was too busy to take a bodily. Undaunted, Ben rented a completely outfitted cell hospital van, employed a health care provider and despatched them to the industrialist. Rumor is that the person ended up with over $50 million in protection.
In 1992, New York Life marked Ben’s 50th yr with the corporate by proclaiming “Feldman’s February”, a nationwide gross sales competitors. Ben took this as a private problem. The winner of the competition (at 80 years previous) was Ben Feldman.
Ben was well-known for his sayings that he used to encourage each purchasers and himself. My favourite is:
“Doing one thing prices one thing.
Doing nothing prices one thing.
And very often, doing nothing prices much more.”
Ben Feldman died in 1993 at 81. Just a few years earlier than his demise he was requested concerning the largest coverage that he had ever written. “I can’t say. I haven’t written it yet.”