How to Transition from AEP to D-SNPs

The lock-in period is here, and just because it’s not the “busy season,” doesn’t mean you can’t stay busy! You can keep sales and commission coming in by shifting your focus from the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) to selling Dual Eligible Special Needs Plans (D-SNPs).

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Selling D-SNPs has a lot of benefits. If you’re new to D-SNP sales or want a refresher on this product, you can learn all about D-SNPs and how to sell them in our guide for beginners. In this post, we’re covering how to smoothly transition from working AEP to selling D-SNPs. Let’s get started!

Check Your Portfolio & Contracts

You can’t sell D-SNPs without any D-SNP contracts with carriers that offer them! It’s better now than ever to peek into your portfolio and see, 1) if you’re currently offering any D-SNPs, and 2) if you could be selling additional D-SNPs. More and more carriers enter this market each year, meaning there might be new plans that you haven’t considered contracting to sell yet. And they could be really competitive in your market!

In total, there are 700 D-SNPs available to shoppers in the upcoming year!

In fact, the number of plans and carriers in the D-SNP market keeps increasing year over year. In total, there are 700 D-SNPs available to shoppers in the upcoming year — up from 540 in 2020!

Ready to update your portfolio? Easily contract to sell D-SNPs through Ritter’s Contract Now! You must register with Ritter’s site first and speak with your sales specialist to activate Contract Now. If you’re already a Ritter agent using Contract Now, simply log in and visit the Contracts tab to find available D-SNPs.

Change the Way You Prospect

Prospecting for D-SNP clients is different than prospecting for other Medicare Advantage clients. Generally, you probably prospect for other Medicare clients by letting them come to you during AEP or when they turn 65. You may send out lead cards or mailers and work leads from your own CMS-compliant, lead-generating website. With D-SNP prospects, you have to go where D-SNP prospects go and form relationships.

Consider hanging flyers/business cards, setting up a table and booth, volunteering, or forming partnerships at the following locations:

  • Dollar and discount stores
  • Thrift shops and flea markets
  • Food banks, food pantries, and soup kitchens
  • Utility assistance locations
  • Churches or other faith-based organizations
  • Areas with low-income housing and senior centers and communities
  • Community events at parks

If you couldn’t tell, community involvement is key to D-SNP prospecting, in addition to recognizing that people who qualify for D-SNPs have lower incomes (they need to be on Medicaid and Medicare to qualify for a plan). But, there are some other characteristics of these clients to keep in mind as well. The following individuals could also be prime D-SNP prospects.

  • Individuals who have been auto-enrolled in a PDP
  • People who are on Medicaid or who had Medicaid and lost it (may be eligible again)
  • MA beneficiaries who are eligible for the low-income subsidy

Note: Be sure to follow all CMS Medicare Advantage & Part D Communication Requirements when prospecting for D-SNP clients!

If you couldn’t tell, community involvement is key to D-SNP prospecting!

Change the Way You Sell

D-SNPs can be a tricky product to work with, because people who qualify for them have the ability to join or switch their plan every calendar quarter. That’s not saying everyone who qualifies for, or is enrolled in, a D-SNP does this, but it is saying there’s a chance your client could be swayed into a new D-SNP by another agent if you’re not careful. In order to best retain D-SNP clients, you definitely need to sell like your client is the renewal.

After you make a sale, don’t think that your work is done because it’s not. You have to build and maintain a relationship with these clients, and relationships of any kind take work. Be sure to educate your clients and follow up with them every six months or so, maybe even every calendar quarter if you’re concerned that you’ll lose them. Make yourself readily available to answer questions or help your clients with their coverage when they need it. This will all go a long way toward building trust and client loyalty.

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D-SNPs are a type of Medicare Advantage product that can be sold year-round, making them a marvelous product for Medicare agents to sell during the lock-in period. You likely already have the knowledge to sell them, we hope this post gives you the know-how to make the switch!

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