Today we’d like to introduce you to Danielle Kunkle.
Danielle, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Our agency began as a solo operation back in 2005. At that time, I pursued any type of health insurance – individual plans, group plans, cancer plans, disability insurance – as well as life insurance. My brother joined me in 2006. Over the next year, we started getting questions from our middle-age clients about Medicare. Usually it would go something like “hey thanks for your help with my insurance for my family.
By the way, do you know anything about Medicare, I’m helping my parents with it and it’s really confusing.”
After we heard this several times, I started to look into offering Medicare insurance products, and quickly found that this was a market that was very under-served online.
Most people turning 65 get bombarded by mail, and have no idea what Medicare covers or how much it costs or who to trust to help them enroll. They don’t even understand Medicare itself, let alone the hundreds of supplemental and drug options.
To make matters worse at that time, the entire industry seemed stuck in this antiquated style of “over the kitchen table sale,” We saw an opportunity to be on the forefront of bringing this information to clients online, and helping them by phone and electronically.
With thousands of people turning 65, the demand was great, and we grew rapidly. Today we have 31 employees, and we help baby boomers across 47 learn the ropes of Medicare.
Our website has over 200 pages of content for people age 64+. We offer webinars and free consultations to teach a really confusing government program to people in plain terms. We are also unique in that we provide our policyholders with free unlimited access to our Client Service Team. This team helps them with all the normal hiccups and problems that Medicare policies involve – drug exceptions, appeals with Medicare denies a claim, searching Medicare’s website for a provider or for the right drug plan. Their service is legendary – you can read hundreds of five-star reviews on our website about them. We also work really hard to get information out to consumers anywhere we can.
I’m a Forbes.com contributor, etc and write guest posts for any organization that asks me too. It’s an incredible business working with the best generation of hard working people – our parent’s generation – and we love them to pieces. Just a lovely generation to do business with.
Has it been a smooth road?
The greatest struggle has been with been making the public aware that there are people like us out there to help them. We’ve tried every form of marketing under the sun – you name it, we’ve tried it. Even still we get people who tell us everyday that they stumbled upon our information and had no idea prior to finding us that there was help like ours available.
There have also been growing pains on the employee side. We hovered around 20 – 25 people for quite some time – two steps forward, one step back. There is so much to learn as a business about managing people, paying competitive wages, human resources, technology. We’ve learned it all by trial and error and we’ve finally hit our stride and broken through that barrier.
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Boomer Benefits – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
For one, we work with Baby Boomers -hence the name Boomer Benefits. While certainly we also assist seniors of any age, it’s the wave of baby boomers aging into Medicare that has driven the need for these services to be online. Baby Boomers are tech savvy, and they purchase their home and auto insurance online. They want to be able to do the same with health insurance.
Our agency also sets ourselves apart by our Client Service Team. Medicare beneficiaries can sign up directly with an insurance company or they can go through a broker. Some brokers are just individuals, but those people really can’t provide the level of service that a successful group like ours can. Those agents will often tell their clients to call the insurance company’s member services line if they need help. Our team provides all of that service in house here at Boomer Benefits. This includes annual rate shopping to keep your premiums low, help with appeals, and assistance with the annual election period and choosing drug coverage, If our clients receive a bill for ANYTHING they know to call us first before they pay it. So many Medicare beneficiaries don’t know any better and they just pay these bills when they often don’t owe them. We save our clients tens of thousands of dollars per year in resolving these which are usually just doctor office billing errors. We also hold annual clients-only webinars to tell them what’s changing with Medicare for the next year – deductibles, premiums, copays, drug thresholds. We are really, really involved with our clients on the back end so that they are never going through any of this on their own.
We also give back to this community via a scholarship for baby boomers who are returning to school to pursue a degree later in life – age 50+. You can find info on our website.
Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I’m in Fort Worth, and I love living in a big city with a small-town feel. I’m a graduate of TCU and even way back then, I could walk to the parking garage alone at night in Sundance Square and feel safe. It’s a clean safe city with so much to offer. When you want some live music or dancing, Dallas is a short drive away.
We also have access to one of the largest airports in the nation which makes business travel so easy.
Like least: the ongoing highway construction. I swear this entire metroplex is under road construction. Growing pains.
- Address: 5650 N Riverside Dr. #200, Fort Worth, TX 76137
- Website: https://boomerbenefits.com
- Phone: 817-249-8600 or toll free 1-855-732-9055.
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