On the second day of the annual Telarus Agent Expo last week, Telarus President Adam Edwards explained to Telarus' top agents why Telarus is "giving away" part of the valued GeoQuote multi-carrier quoting tool (for which Telarus has a patent) to the agent public through their new online tool www.CarrierQuoteShop.com.
The reasons cited by Edwards include the following:
1. Give all carriers a terrific incentive to ensure Telarus' GeoQuote & CarrierQuoteShop.com tools have the best information
2. Drive down Telarus' costs of supporting their proprietary quoting tool
3. Prevent Master Stream or other corporate carrier software platforms from creating a carrier pricing information monopoly
4. Showcase to all industry agents, master agents and carriers the cutting edge technology that Telarus has brought to the game.
Click the following to watch a video of Adam Edwards explaining the move to Telarus' existing agents. There's about a 4 minute lead in. If you want to "cut to the chase", scroll forward to 4:00.
Not that anyone's asking, but what do I, Dan Baldwin, think of the move by Telarus?
I've been watching Adam and Patrick grow Telarus for several years. While I'm not a Telarus agent myself, I know many Telarus agents quite well. My impression is that Telarus is not trying to make life difficult for their fellow master agents. They seem fairly confident that's there's enough business to make every master agent happy and then some.
Telarus also acknowledges that every master agent brings something different to the market. Telarus' "gift" if you will, is their technology. While they were not the first to increase agent back office efficiency by combining computers and the Internet (Brad Miehl of MicroCorp with his Nautilus solution might have been the first), Telarus has certainly done the best job of empowering possibly the greatest number of telecom agents with the technology.
My gut feel is that CarrierQuoteShop.com, while it might seem annoying or threatening to other master agents, is a very good thing for all master agents, agents and the carriers alike in that it is "Googlizing" carrier pricing information.
By making the best pricing freely available to all, Telarus is ensuring that an information monopoly does not develop in the form of Master Stream or any others. Now certainly one can say, "What if Telarus is evil?" To which I would answer, "Not these guys." They're hyper-aggressive. They're intensely curious. They're also border-line fearless. But mean, nasty, dishonest or untrustworthy? No.
To all the carriers in "agent-land" I say, "Support CarrierQuoteShop.com to ensure you're able to get your pricing to the marketplace outside a single-source".
To the master agents I say, "You know where you have advantages over Telarus - those are not going away. Give Telarus a call and see how you can amicably work together to see how CarrierQuoteShop.com can benefit you and your subagents."
To the working agent I say, "Hey, this is a 'no-brainer'. More knowledge and better pricing is always better. Sign-up for CarrierQuoteShop.com to ensure you're bringing the most accurate pricing to your telecom party."
Posted 3/9/2010 by:
TA Executive Director