Agency Profile: By Storm

Eagan Insurance Agency

Metairie, Louisiana
Founded: 1954
Employees: 92

In the decade since Hurricane Katrina, Eagan Insurance has prospered as New Orleans rebuilds. With locations in Metairie, LaPlace and Covington, Louisiana, the agency is currently scouting a fourth location in Baton Rouge. Eagan has 32 producers, and business is 60% p-c commercial, 30% p-c personal and 10% life, health and benefits. Income was $15.9 million in 2013—and has continued growth.

ANDREW EAGAN, MARKETING MANAGER

We took advantage of construction and reconstruction following Hurricane Katrina. A blighted and crime-ridden section of our central city has re-emerged as a state-of-the-art biomedical corridor, creating new demand for commercial and personal insurance. We also jumped on the condo conversion bandwagon. Many of the older homes in New Orleans are very large, especially in the Uptown area, and are being converted to condos. We are now the No. 1 condo specialist in New Orleans and have broadened the coverage arena to include directors and officers, E&O and other coverages for condo officers and associations.

Because our agency is so well-established in the New Orleans and Gulf South area, many of our customers are lifelong friends and family associates of our producers. Although our young producers do a certain amount of cold calling, the majority of our growth comes from existing clients’ expansion, referrals and word of mouth. Our reputation for integrity, stability and community involvement, coupled with our strong advertising campaigns and excellent company relations, has made Eagan Insurance a household name in the Greater New Orleans area and beyond.

As we grow, we see a growing need for more specific coverages than simple property or general liability. We work to find specialized markets for unusual risks and new markets for standard coverages. We search for companies willing to deviate from the standard quote—whether by reducing rates, adding coverages or removing exclusions. Having alternative quotes makes coverage easier to sell and gives our customers better premiums and more of a choice. Our account executives and CSRs are assigned to specific producers, freeing producers to seek new business without being tied to routine office procedures.

MARC EAGAN, PRESIDENT

Hurricane Katrina taught us that coverages and limits should be reviewed annually, especially in personal lines and flood areas. Many insureds’ property limits hadn’t been updated in years, and claims paid inadequate funds to rebuild. An annual direct mail campaign and form letters remind customers to review coverage limits, especially if they have added or renovated property or updated home electronics systems. The “Eagan Private” division of our personal lines department is assigned to the affluent customer, and staff understands the complex needs of high-end property placement and service. The division has its own stationery, business cards and marketing materials.

In the past year, our producers successfully faced the inevitable slowdown of regrowth in New Orleans. We continue to grow despite the competition for limited customers. We established a risk management division with an individual who is trained and accredited in home inspection and wind mitigation, so we can help customers improve their risk in order to further reduce premiums.

MALLORY EAGAN, ELLIS PUBLIC RELATIONS AND SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER

We advertise extensively between Mardi Gras and Labor Day—the hurricane season when most people are insurance-conscious. We sponsor severe weather break-ins and hurricane preparedness specials. We concentrate our TV and radio ads during morning and evening drive-time and news programs. An in-house department creates and produces all proposals, presentations, TV and radio advertisements, print ads, direct mail pieces and our newsletter.

When we redesigned our website, we added interactive quoting and blogs. On Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, we post insurance-related information, public service announcements, and agency and employee achievements. Eagan’s community service projects include hundreds of nonprofit and philanthropic donations, participation in local charitable events, health sponsorships and walks. We promote Eagan’s image of stability, family ownership and strength. The presence we maintain through advertising, social media and community participation reinforces this image, brings in many new customers because of brand awareness and word of mouth, and attracts outstanding employees.