Insurance

Food Borne Illness and the Hospitality Insurance Company

Those operating in the hospitality industry realize the positive effects that a well-prepared meal at a restaurant can have on guests, allowing them to enjoy the company of family and friends while experimenting with exciting new cuisines. Therefore they have an added responsibility to ensure the food is prepared properly and safely.

A food borne disease is entirely preventable by adhering to general safety practices in the preparation of meals. Annually, as many as 48 million people get sick every year from tainted foods, with up to 3,000 deaths occurring. It’s important to know that the symptoms are often flu-like and can happen minutes or even weeks after the food has been ingested, which is why obtaining restaurant coverage from a hospitality insurance company is so vital to the business and the care of anyone affected.

Food borne diseases are a major concern

It’s important to know common food borne illnesses because being informed is often the best way to reduce the chances of someone becoming sick due to ingesting a meal at your locale. This type of illness must be taken quite seriously to ensure the best treatment possible is given in a timely manner. Proper preparation is vital, regardless of whether these mistakes were made in the kitchen or they originated at the source of the food.

There are different types of diseases associated with contaminated foods. Salmonella can be present in food without affecting the appearance, smell or taste of the food. Symptoms of salmonella range from diarrhea, fever, and cramps, though most people tend to recover within 8 to 72 hours, even without a doctor’s intervention.

  1. Coli, another common concern, affects people who have consumed food or water that has been contaminated by microscopic traces of cow feces. One of the most common and severe instances of food poisoning, complications of which can cause severe bleeding and kidney failure, it can be prevented by the proper cooking and handling of food.

Campylobacter can be spread by having the raw juices of uncooked chicken drip from the poultry onto other food and can be left behind on preparation surfaces after the raw chicken has been removed. For this reason, proper cooking and handling of raw chicken is vitally important to maintaining physical health.

As the owner it should be your primary concern to ensure the safety of the people eating there, as well as the safety of your employees. Working with a hospitality insurance company can help to make certain that you have the right policy to address any food contamination issues that arise.

Managing Risk By Maintaining Crime Insurance

There are many areas in a business that create risk and unnecessary exposures to crime, either internally or from outside forces. By managing these problem areas a business owner can help to greatly reduce some costly concerns and therefore save his or her company an exorbitant amount of money. Crime is one of those things that every company must be aware of. Whether employees are stealing from you, or thieves, shoplifters and burglars are the culprits behind these losses, crime insurance is the most valuable solution to stem the tide of losses.

Taking adequate security measures can pay dividends

In order to avoid risk, a company must determine just what those risks are. Here are some ways in which a business can assess their risk and also determine ways to prevent unfortunate losses from occurring:

  • Installing adequate devices to control unauthorized entry onto the premises
  • Have a burglar alarm that reports to a central station or a constantly attended monitoring facility
  • Have adequate fencing and gates around the building and parking areas
  • Provide adequate exterior and interior lighting, and
  • Have adequate door and window locks and control access to premises by physical barriers and/or surveillance

Beyond this, you may also wish to require the use of company ID badges, have appropriate visitor sign-in sheets and escort procedures, have check-in and check-out procedures, and an inventory control system in place.

Your accounting department should also be closely monitored. It might be preferable if a single person oversees cash, bank deposits and inventory. Instruct the person in charge to make cash deposits frequently in order to limit the amount of cash on hand. You might also be better off if billing is independently reconciled to ensure proper charges, credits and refunds are administered.

Protection from Theft

Employees should be properly trained to handle situations involving theft and fraud.

Train staff to recognize shoplifting risks and also on the proper way to respond when a situation unfolds. They should be trained to recognize counterfeit currency, determine credit card validity, and report acts of vandalism or theft committed by employees, visitors, vendors, or contractors.

By better managing the premises through security measures, overseeing accounting practices and ensuring that deposits are regularly scheduled, a company can make great strides in reducing risk and avoiding losses that will increase crime insurance premiums.

Many Insurance Marketers Favor a Drip Marketing Program

The intention of a drip marketing campaign is to close sales, grow revenues and build your business. By implementing a drip marketing program you’ll be able to feed leads into a sales funnel eventually turning those leads into prospects and then subsequently move those prospects through the channel until they become new clients.

Most insurance marketers will tell you that the most successful drip marketing programs help to build lasting relationships, improve customer or client retention, enable you to solicit feedback from customers that can help develop product or service enhancements and establish credibility by helping you to become perceived as a knowledgeable expert.

Engaging new leads provides opportunities to make sales

Drip marketing campaigns are an opportunity to learn more about clients and prospects, get their feedback on a particular topic, and invite them to share their own experiences. It’s important that you develop content that adds value for the recipient. You may also wish to promote an upcoming event geared to provide useful information, or an educational event, such as a seminar.  A drip marketing campaign is an excellent opportunity to provide contacts with more information thereby getting them excited about attending these events.

Remember to keep messages on topic and short as this will help to keep the recipients attention and increase the likelihood they’ll willingly read future messages. Don’t send out random messages and remember that drip marketing is all about nurturing relationships with contacts.

It’s crucial that you don’t send emails that turn off potential prospects. If the message recipients believe the emails are just there to sell them they may quickly learn to ignore them altogether. What is needed is a strong communication plan that maps out a message delivery timeline that doesn’t inundate people with tons of emails. Try sending no more than one email a week.

Attempt to craft your messages so that they resonate with the individual receiving them. Be thoughtful and develop messages that are specific to each individual contact. Certainly try to mix things up and try using new messages, formats and subject lines as things progress.

Refrain from sending the same email out more than once as this is counter-productive and may have a negative impact on your credibility.

Drip marketing has a lot of appeal when done properly and can enhance the efforts of insurance marketers in every line of business.

Boating Issues and Yacht Club Insurance Brokers

Owners of fleets of water vessels, such as marina operators, boat dealers and yacht clubs, as well as boat builders and yacht brokers must all protect their businesses against common risks associated with activities likely to occur in the water as well as on land. Agents and yacht club insurance brokers need to help those facing a unique set of exposures and find coverage options that best help suit their client’s needs.

Yacht clubs, because of the many activities they sponsor throughout the year, rely on the protection they are afforded by carrying yacht club insurance for the vast array of exposures they have concerns over with regularity. Business is heaviest in the summer months and they should all be focusing on these very important coverage options.

Liability is an essential policy to have in place

Liability coverage is perhaps the most important aspect of any yacht club insurance coverage plan. Liability features that are currently available include coverage for legal defense costs, wreckage removal, water and oil pollution and resulting contamination cleanup, and non-owned (i.e. borrowed) boats that could suffer damage while on the premises.

If the yacht club employs a captain or crew, Jones Act coverage will be needed for times when damages or injuries result from a collision or other hazards occurring. Any act deemed to be caused by negligence by the owner or one of their employees could result in a claim and any legal action that is taken can be quite costly.

This should also include purchasing employer’s liability for full-time and part-time staff, freelance instructors and volunteers. For example, insurance will provide coverage in the event someone accidentally trips or slips while boarding or disembarking a vessel or anyone that claims to have suffered an injury of some sort during their visit.

Perhaps the most significant coverage difference between various policies is whether the loss settlement basis is “agreed value” or “actual cash value.” Replacement cost coverage normally pays for damage (less any deductible), and age depreciation is generally not factored in for most losses. Actual cash value coverage for partial losses may reduce the claim payment based upon depreciation, and the policy deductible will apply.

Before your client purchases any policy from yacht club insurance brokers be sure to speak to them about their coverage options and help them choose a policy plan that provides the needed protection.

Insurance For Dog Bites and Preventing a Lawsuit     

Dog bites account for more than 90% of all animal bites and approximately 4.5 million dog bites occur each year in the U.S. With more than 30,000 victims requiring reconstructive surgery, while you may be a responsible pet owner, you can’t always predict how your dog may react to another person. It is not uncommon to have an unprovoked attack, as any motion that your dog perceives as a potential threat could set an attack into motion.

A dog, for whatever reason, may become irritated and it’s up to you to recognize and avoid situations where a dog might become uncomfortable, such as being repeatedly struck in the face by a child, or any other situations that could possibly irritate the animal. In the event there is an attack, provoked or otherwise, you’re going to need the protection of insurance for dog bites.

Dog bite prevention requires safety and a little common sense

It may, as is often the case, be an unfortunate friend or family member who gets bitten. As a pet owner you need to do everything in your means to prevent an attack and reduce the possibility of a lawsuit. All dog owners have the same concerns when it comes to their pet biting or harming someone.

Just because your dog may have never bitten someone before doesn’t mean that it can’t or won’t happen. Use of the following safety tips can help to aid in preventing the occurrence of dog bites. Always put the animal on a leash whenever you take him or her for a walk. Avoid allowing children to pet the animal if you sense that it is feeling scared or nervous.

As a parent, do not allow your child to approach a stray or unfamiliar dog, especially if the owner is not present. Never approach a dog with quick motions and ask the owner if it’s okay to pet the dog prior to making contact. If a confrontation occurs, avoid screaming or running away, and avoid approaching an unfamiliar dog while it is eating, sleeping, or caring for puppies. Finally, don’t leave young children or infants unsupervised with a dog.

Choosing a dog breed that is compatible with any family situation is always best. For example, aggressive dogs are never ideal in a home with small children. Dogs are social animals and therefore socializing and appropriate training will help minimize the risk of dog bites, but this isn’t an excuse for not carrying ample insurance for dog bites.

Useful Social Media for Insurance Sales Strategies

By now every agency on the planet, with few exceptions, uses social media for insurance sales as a viable marketing tool. Agents understand the importance of interaction with visitors to their website. This is an ideal platform to use when employing promotions aimed at generating more revenue.

There are a few things to utilize, as well as to avoid, in order to be successful with the items you post on a social media page. Posts on social media should never be strictly sales oriented, as this makes it difficult to engage with prospects. You need a delicate balance between self-promotion and providing helpful information in the items you post.

Some resourceful suggestions

Sign up for Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and YouTube since the more exposure you have, the better the chance for success. Be sure to write regular weekly posts or blogs at the very least, but two to three times a week will probably garner better results. Try writing social media posts that consumers will find useful and making them pertinent and timely can really help your efforts. For example, include car maintenance tips, or provide some tips on business insurance that many companies tend to overlook.

The best way to keep customers engaged is by offering prizes for answering questions pertaining to your products and services or having contests and listing the names of the winners on the agency’s Facebook page. Make sure to include blogs relevant to a particular insurance product and share the content you create to drive traffic to the agency’s website and on social media profiles (this can also help with search engine optimization).

Another way to help visitors identify with a particular agency is by posting a profile of every agency employee, including a photo of them along with information about community events they’ll be attending. It can also be advantageous to post reviews from fans and followers of the agency as written by the very people who post them on Facebook or write emails thanking their agent for his help and insight.

There are many ways to use social media for insurance purposes. Live tweets in which people can ask questions and receive answers in real time can bolster your image as well.

Cyber Risk Concerns Adversely Affect Medical Institutions

Despite many recent reports involving cyber breaches to large corporations, the medical industry has its share of exposures and concerns. Cyber risk continues to be a serious issue, and cyber liability is now one of the top threats to the medical industry. Medical records and personal information stored on servers serves as a target to many hackers and thieves who see value in obtaining these files.

While having your clients add to their current IT security is a great way to try to combat this issue, it still isn’t enough to address all of the risks being taken. A comprehensive set of network-security policies and procedures need to be properly implemented and tested, as well as updated on a regular basis, in order to ensure that the proper risk assessment has been made and steps to properly manage the problem are in place.

Reputational damage is another concern

The loss of reputation and brand value to these institutions is another major issue, and the losses suffered due to a breach can be hard to overcome. In many studies this is high among respondents’ concerns. Obviously, if a company experiences a loss of personal data belonging to clients it creates a lack of trust in that company. Having this type of risk is likely to have a cumulative effect with any subsequent attacks occurring.

Hospitals and healthcare professionals have since come to terms with the fact that they now face a serious danger from cyber risk and privacy breaches. Confidential information and personal data is a very valuable company asset, one that these organizations must strive to great lengths to protect. Traditional insurance plans will not cover the costs incurred from misplacing or losing sensitive data.

Lost or stolen data can cost a company millions of dollars if not properly protected. Companies with personally identifiable information and protected health information should purchase standalone products that will help to transfer this risk and protect their balance sheet. Doing business online is a risky proposition, and with individual information becoming more public, along with sensitive business information, this type of exposure can cripple a profitable organization. As a broker you should educate your clients in the best ways to protect their customers and their business through properly insuring against cyber crime.

Distracted Driving and the Cheapest Car Insurance in CT

Distracted drivers remain one of the top reasons why there are so many traffic accidents on the roads today. Because of their obsession with cell phones, particularly texting and playing games, many young motorists take their eyes off of the road and this can be a fatal mistake. Cell phone use while behind the wheel has become a major concern for law enforcement in recent years.

Hopefully no one is killed due to this type of dangerous activity, but accidents still result in a lot of damage and expense and that’s why it’s suggested that you, whenever possible, look for the cheapest car insurance in ct that will still give you coverage in the proper amounts that meet the standards of the state.

Younger drivers often don’t consider the risks

The concern is greatest among younger drivers due in part to their inexperience. While cell phones are often the culprits, teen drivers can be distracted by any number of things. For example, a car full of kids screaming or horsing around can lead to an accident, as can merely eating, or looking at the GPS for direction. Whatever the reason, kids need to be reminded that the danger of being involved in a serious accident is not worth the risk of not giving the responsibility of driving a vehicle on highways and city streets the proper attention it deserves.

Adults can be equally responsible for their lack of good judgment

Young drivers are not the only ones found at fault for accidents due to distracted driving. Adults and the elderly are often at fault for crashes that are caused by driver inattention.

Many adults feel it’s okay to dial a cell phone while driving because they think they are quite adept at multitasking, but doing so can increase the risk of a crash many times over.

Even scrolling through the menus of an iPod looking for a particular song forces a person to take their eyes off of the road, and at that precise moment some event could take place, a changing light or a car merging into their lane, leaving them with little time to react to the situation. Often people engaged in cell phone conversations miss traffic signals when talking on a phone, or take longer to react to signals when they do notice.

Regardless of what causes the many accidents occurring every day, it makes good sense to invest in the cheapest car insurance in ct to help pay the cost of damages associated with traffic collisions.

Pet Liabilities and Dog Bite Homeowner Insurance

Dog bite homeowner insurance is important to secure, particularly for owners of certain breeds known for aggressive or assertive behavior. Often genetics play a key role in this issue. But some dogs also tend to be influenced by their owner’s temperament as well, and the size of the dog can also be a determining factor in just how serious the problem can be.

The issue of dog bite liabilities is obviously one of concern. Many of the dogs involved tend to be family pets, rather than strays, and more than two-thirds of dog bites happen to people already acquainted with the dog. A majority of dog bites occur to the very young and very old, and almost half of all bites to children, due to their smallness in height, are in the facial area. Many claims made against homeowner’s insurance policies are often due to dog bites.

 

Behavior modification can help to resolve some issues

At an early age puppies develop bonds and sensitivity to those people and animals in their lives, and if a young pup is not exposed to positive interaction with dogs during this period they often grow up without the necessary skills to deal with other dogs. They also may never be comfortable with people outside of their owner if not given the proper exposure. If the socialization process is delayed until the puppy is older, the dog may never be relaxed or never become socially interactive with people or other dogs.
It’s important that any children in the household handle the dog frequently and gently and never scold or speak harshly to the pet. Holding the puppy firmly and resisting the temptation to let go of it (when it squirms to be released) can also help to minimize later aggression and dominant behavior.
As the dog gets older there may come a time when most normal dogs begin to bark at strangers and guard the family and it’s property. This is normal behavior, however some dogs may begin to show objectionable aggressive behavior. Make the dog aware that this is a problem. Obedience training can help to correct these types of issues, but dog bites are often the result of fear and uncertainty in the animal as well. Dog bite homeowner insurance is the solution when an unfortunate attack occurs.

Insurance Marketing Plan for Social Media

A social media insurance marketing plan is a great way to campaign. Most people involved in social media realize that this is an avenue that provides great opportunities to making their brand highly recognizable in their community. It’s pretty hard not to be effective when you’re constantly posting and staying in the minds of the public. This will often garner the desired results.

A few goals to keep in mind, as part of what makes for a successful community management strategy, are enhancing awareness, improving public perception, enhancing customer service and support, creating advocates, and collecting analysis and feedback. By enhancing awareness, a company is spreading the word to potential customers, while staying fresh in the mind of existing customers along with anything else that might influence existing and potential users.

 

Public perception is key to success

Having strong positive public relations helps build brand loyalty. When customers, and prospects think and feel good about your brand, they’re more likely to notice the positive aspect, which then translates into better word-of-mouth. Customers with problems or questions are engaging in online and social media communities to spread the word and ask for help or seek solutions. A good community presence provides enhanced customer service and support by answering users questions and directing them down avenues to resolve any problems or issues.

Information on how existing or potential customers feel about a product can be extremely important. Having the ability to create and identify opportunities to improve an existing product (or understanding successful enhancements for future products) can generate the desired results. By finding out what a community really wants, and understanding what they dislike, can help extend an existing product’s life, or determine how to refine and design new products more successfully.

When users learn what a product does and how to make the most out of it, they tend to be much more engaged. This requires making sure, through educating existing and potential customers, that they know how to effectively utilize it. Perhaps the biggest goal is to increase acquisition. The goal is obviously to have more people purchase or use the product.

This requires identifying what is important to clients and that knowledge can help you to create a goal-oriented community management strategy that allows you, as a business owner, to measure effectiveness as well as success. Your insurance marketing plan for social media should aim to accomplish these goals.