Illinois Mutual


Illinois Mutual is a life insurance company which did not have a Hispanic Market strategy in place. Its leadership could no longer ignore the Hispanic market’s potential and decided to initiate efforts to develop a Hispanic market strategy. The company’s home office is in Peoria, Illinois which does not have a large Hispanic population. Its employees reflect the European heritage of the city and many have been with the company for 20 years or more. The good news and the bad news was the company was starting with a clean slate, but more importantly, the company’s leadership was committed to doing it right or not at all.

How We Resolved It

One of the best decisions Illinois Mutual Life made for our Hispanic Marketing Initiative was to hire Terry Soto as a consultant. Her complete involvement with our leadership and personnel was detailed and planned in every way with careful thought on how each department was impacted. Through her leadership, we now have the right strategy, organization, competencies, and infrastructure and have successfully launched our initiative. It’s been great working with Terry as a business partner and as a friend who’s had our best interest at heart.”
Stephen J Kershaw CLU ChFC, Senior Vice President Sales, Illinois Mutual Life, Illinois Mutual Life

We set out a three phase process; 1) External Assessment which focused on discovering, analyzing and providing a solid picture of the Hispanic market opportunity in the 49 states where IM was licensed to sell policies. This included a solid picture of macro, industry, competitive and consumer landscape including a sizing of the opportunity. 2) Internal Assessment which focused on an assessment of the company’s strengths and weaknesses. We assembled a Hispanic Task Force comprised of the company’s president and its senior executives. Over the course of three months the team went to work on an a research and analysis, market observations, field and corporate office interviews and work session process related to products, service delivery, infrastructure, marketing, sales/distribution, staffing, and its policy holders. 3) Implementation for which we laid out a year long timeline to implement the required alignment work.


Phase I successfully led to Phase II. Phase II strategy was well received and supported and as a result the green light and necessary resources were allocated to implement the strategy in the home office and the field. The strategy is now integrated across the entire company and the company has seen double digit growth in Hispanic policy production since launching. In some cases Hispanic Policy production growth has even surpassed non-Hispanic policy production growth.