Customer Spotlight – Steve Cranford

Meet Steve Cranford of ASU Assure in Thomasville, NCPhoto of Steve Cranford

How long have you been with your firm and what’s your role there?
I was with another agency and my contract expired in 2017. I started my agency in August of 2017. At this point it’s just me; I am a one-man band. My goal is that by the 4th or 5th year, I want to be at a point where I can bring someone on to work with me. I am currently on target.

If you have a niche market that you’re involved with, how did you get started in that niche?
I’m starting to get back into the niche I used to have: habitational risks.  I got started in that niche originally just by cold calling and the first prospect I called gave me his business and then grew his business exponentially. So that account grew nicely.  But eventually I learned the risk involved in having only 1 or 2 very large accounts – when they retire and/or sell, it’s a large loss.  I decided I need to spread it out more across many accounts that are small, medium and large.

I joined the Triad Habitational Association and met some new people that were in this niche and it took off from there.  At some point I didn’t have access to the right markets for this niche, but recently a carrier I was talking about an appointment with mentioned that habitational is one of their specialties. So, I am excited about getting back in that niche and reopening some doors from the past.

What is your favorite part about working in the insurance industry?
I enjoy talking with people, developing relationships and educating them. A lot of people buy on price and don’t know what they purchased – and unfortunately they find out why they saved so much over “the other agent” at the time of claim. I want to help people and families avoid a bad experience at the time of claim.

A friend of mine has a mobile garage – he takes care of back hoes and fork lifts and more. He got a quote from a different agent and it was quoted as if he was a regular brick and mortar garage which is not right. When he brought me the quote, I explained the differences and the importance of proper coverage when it comes to a claim. It’s all about doing the right thing for your client.

What are 3 key words you’d use to describe what you do?
Serving, educating, and relationships.
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How would you describe your productivity before and after using eForms Wizard?

  • eForms Wizard streamlines my process.  No rekeying.  I know where everything is, and it’s right at my fingertips.
  • It makes completing an application easy – you know where you left off.  It’s simple and it keeps me organized. It only takes a couple keystrokes to change the applications – especially the next year.  You can change what needs to be changed and you’re done!
  • I can easily edit and complete ACORDs whether I am in front of the prospect/customer or on the phone.
  • eForms Wizard provides ease and speed, especially at renewal.
  • 3 words: Simple, Organized, Accessible!

What is something most people don’t know about you – maybe a unique hobby or interest?
I have horses and chickens. I love to garden, and I can cook.  I love to fish – I have fished in the World bill fish championship in Cabo (cancelled a trip to Outer Banks with the guys when the opportunity arose last minute).  I play rugby – my college rugby friends/fraternity are still in touch, and we get together every year during homecoming at Appalachian. We go to the game, go hiking and do stuff we used to do.

What does an ideal weekend look like?

  • Not mowing the yard! I definitely prefer going to the lake!
  • Hiking with my fiancé and friends. We both went to school at Appalachian and we share a love of outdoors, hiking and swimming in the creek. We recently hiked Stone mountain and Table Rock.

Where is the best place you’ve traveled to and why?
One of my buddies has a house on the beach in Corolla, NC (Outer Banks). A bunch of my fraternity buddies and I still get together and in September of 2020 we all met back down there for an end of summer get together and to celebrate the fact that many of us were turning 60. The drive there is beautiful through Duck, and we saw wild horses on the beach. It was most definitely a memorable time!

What chore do you absolutely hate doing?
Unloading the dishwasher.


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