Getting ready to host a sales event or simply schedule your next sales appointment? Before you send out your invitations and print those sign-in sheets, you’ll want to make sure you’re following the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) guidelines dictated in the Medicare Marketing Guidelines (Sections 70.8 and 70.9). The guidelines differ for educational events for potential enrollees and activities at enrollee-only educational events. But we’ve compiled everything you need to know about activities at sales events and appointments right here.
What Does CMS Consider a Sales Event or Appointment?
An activity will be considered a sales event or appointment if it is designed to persuade potential enrollees to choose a specific plan (or set of plans), according to CMS. The inclusion of plan-specific information, sales techniques, and the collection of applications differentiate these events from educational events. Brokers can still educate their clients during a sales event or appointment, but they will still have to follow CMS’ rules for sales events and appointments.
What Brokers Should Do Before an Event or Appointment
Before brokers conduct sales events or appointments, they must submit all sales scripts and presentations to the insurance company they represent. The insurance company is then responsible for submitting those sales and marketing items to CMS for approval. Once the company has received approval from CMS, it will notify the brokers that they may start using their sales materials.
Brokers Are Allowed to Do These Things During an Event or Appointment
Brokers are allowed to do the following during a sales event or appointment.
- Educate potential enrollees
- Discuss plan-specific information
- Collect plan applications
Brokers Must Avoid These Activities During an Event or Appointment
The following activities are prohibited during sales events and appointments.
- Conducting health screenings and similar activities that give the impression of “cherry-picking”
- Require enrollees to provide their contact information before they can attend a sales event
- Even requiring an email, phone number, or address before an individual can RSVP for an event online or through mail is prohibited.
- Use personal contact information collected during the event, which the broker has indicated will be used to notify winners of a raffle or similar activity, for any other purpose
If brokers include sign-in sheets at their events, it must be clearly indicated that providing any contact information is completely optional. Otherwise, potential enrollees may think providing this information is a requirement, and the broker responsible will be going against CMS guidelines.
Where to Find More Medicare Marketing Guidelines
Excelsior is taking the time to break down each Medicare Marketing Guideline that brokers need to know. Just visit our online resource center. And if you’re more interested in learning what else Excelsior can do for you, such as teaching you how to double or triple your revenue, contact us today.
Note: For the most current information, see the CMS Medicare Marketing Guidelines.