|By Rolf Boone, The Olympian (Olympia, Wash.)|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
That's not always an easy sell in a slow economy, he said, when many are most interested in the cheapest policy money can buy.
But a close relationship with an agent has its benefits, Hayward argues, pointing out that the strictly phone-based insurance experience -- when it comes to filing a claim -- can sometimes take too long or calls don't get returned.
"The level of care really isn't there," he said.
Hayward, 28, has rolled out the red carpet to his potential clients in the following ways:
--For his grand opening he had a little fun, calling it a "not your father's grand opening" which took place at
--On baseball's opening day, his office served hot dogs to customers, plus showed a game and played video baseball games on TV.
--In October, his office served coffee and desserts at a nearby cafe. A client played music, he said.
--An upcoming event is to organize a family day at Charlie's Safari, an indoor playground for children.
The last time he sold anything were candy bars to generate funds for
She had been with her previous insurance company for 20 years, and had never been in an accident, but finally called one day to inquire about windshield repairs.
"Your rates are going to go up," the person on the phone matter-of-factly explained. Havlisch was stunned that was the insurance company's first response to her after being a loyal customer for so long. She decided to start shopping around and signed up with Hayward, eventually switching her home and both vehicles to
"I feel like I made a connection with him," she said, adding that he was personable and avoided using a lot of insurance jargon in explaining
She's not sure she saved a ton of money, but the coverage is better, Havlisch said.
Years in business: One.
Employees: Two full time, one part time.
Services: Sells auto, home, life, business and health care insurance, as well as financial services.
Did you know? Hayward has spent nearly six years with
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