FOBO – Agents have the solution!

Many of you have heard of FOMO, or ‘Fear of Missing Out’ that is creating angst amongst friends, neighbors and others about who has the best plans for the weekend or something similar. Well let us introduce you to FOMO’s anxious sibling FOBO, or “Fear of Better Options.”

We all need to make thousands of decisions every day, about what to eat, wear, buy or what our priorities are for the day and these decisions are getting harder.

Did you know there are over 80,000 drink options at Starbucks and 5,863 movies and TV shows on Netflix?  It is no wonder that making decisions is getting harder. For some, just choosing between watching ‘The Crown’ or ‘Succession’ is hard enough. People, including your clients, are being crippled by indecision.

Years ago, when we had fewer options some of us still sat on the fence, and in today’s world of a thousand choices many are suffering from FOBO and it is making us miserable.

Consider this example from a recent research project:

Customers were offered either 6 or 24 different jams from which to choose on alternate days. On days where customers only had 6 options over 30% purchased a jam, on days where they had 24 options only 3% purchased .

Too many choices paralyses decision making, and obviously health insurance agents know this.  Take Medicare for example: there is Original Medicare, Medigap, Medicare Advantage, Cost Plans, Part D, Medicare Savings Accounts and multiple options from local and national carriers.  Members have literally hundreds of options from which to choose. For many, the fear of not making the best choice prevents them from making any choice.

Letting go and having trust are fundamental to choosing the most suitable option: clients need to let go, and agents must be trusted for their advice to be taken. Building and earning trust is the key to being able to make a recommendations.

Taking time to fully understand a client’s needs takes time and having a rigorous ‘needs analysis’ process can really help. If an agent has listened and understood a client’s needs, and has reflected on their concerns, then it is far more likely your recommendations will be accepted. One reason that many agent meetings end with ‘hugs’ is because of the immense relief of making a decision . Congratulations, you just cured their FOBO!

So, when a client comes to you with clear signs of FOBO, you can let them know that they came to the right place.

Consider this quote which talks to the professionalism of advisors:

‘People who give the best are those who give of themselves, time, talents, words and knowledge’ – Omoakhuana Anthonia, author.