AIL AO Review

Looking to work with an insurance agency? Are you considering AIL AO? If so, you are in the right place. 

In this article, I will cover AIL AO’s sales method, pros, cons, and products. I will also provide detailed reviews directly from current and former agents of AIL AO. 

If you want to know how AIL AO works and if it’s for you, keep reading!

PS: Check out my insurance sales jobs reviews of other agencies for more information. 

NOTE: Are you an aspiring or new insurance agent looking for more insight into how the insurance sales industry works? Check out my free New Insurance Agent Resource Guide to help answer many of your questions (as well as ones you didn’t know you had!).https://davidduford.com/insurance-sales-resource-guide/

DISCLAIMERS: We are not in any way affiliated with American Income Life (AIL) AO. In fact, we are a direct competitor of theirs. This article is our personal review of AIL and we aim to provide a balanced and fair review. If you would like to contact AIL, you can do so at 254-761-6400 or 1-800-433-3405 

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Who Is AIL AO?

AIL AO is an insurance agency in the financial services sector. They provide training and mentorship to new agents. 

AO is “the largest distribution system of AIL”. They provide training for associates around the United States.

Who Is American Income Life (AIL) Globe Life?

American Income Life (AIL) was founded in 1951 by Bernard Rapoport.

AIL grew into a large Insurance company with many other distribution systems and agencies.

AIL’s main customer base includes credit unions, labor unions, and insurance solicitation associations. 

The AIL headquarters is located in Waco, Texas. AIL carries an A rating with AM best as of 2020. 

American Income Life is a subsidiary of Globe Life Insurance which operates in the USA, New Zealand, and Canada. 

What Does AIL AO Do?

AIL AO is a distribution system of AIL. So, AO Agency markets and sells products for AIL. AO also recruits and trains new agents to broaden their reach and build their business. 

New agents learn to sell insurance products and recruit other agents.

AO operates in 19 states in the USA and in 7 provinces in Canada. AIL AO works with labor organizations, activists, and leaders of all kinds. They claim to work with “leaders of more than 45 international unions”.

What Products Do They Sell?

Since AIL AO is one of the main distributors for AIL, they market and sell AIL products. This would include life, supplemental health, accidental, cancer, critical illness, and hospital indemnity insurance. 

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Why Do Agents Work At AIL AO?

Agents work at AIL AO to get training and mentorship in the insurance business. AIL AO advertises a great work culture and access to exotic trips and other perks. 

On their website, you see pictures of agents on trips abroad, agents partying, and agents with Rolexes. AIL AO heavily markets this kind of “lifestyle” work culture. 

On their website, they say “From Rolex watches to exotic resorts and everything in-between, we like to work hard so we can play hard. Here we say TGIM not TGIF.” *

Is AIL Legit?

AIL is a legitimate company.  AIL and AIL AO are rated on A.M. best, BBB, Glassdoor, and Investopedia.

Is AIL A Pyramid Scheme?

AIL AO is not a pyramid scheme or a scam. It is structured the same way many other agencies are. 

The main insurance provider works with a large agency, that large agency then trains agents who build smaller agencies. This process repeats until you have multiple independent agents and small agencies under a large agency such as AIL. 

How Is AIL Run And Structured?

As you may have noticed, the structure is a pyramid in appearance, but it actually resembles an MLM structure. 

There are multiple levels you can reach within the agency and you can build a downline under yourself. 

As mentioned before, this type of structure is very common and by no means unique to AIL AO. 

This MLM structure can pose some issues depending on a branch’s focus. Some agencies and/or branches may emphasize recruiting new agents rather than selling the actual insurance product. 

This can become a problem when new agents are focusing on recruiting other new agents. The person who recruits you may be responsible for training and mentoring you. 

But how could a newbie train a newbie? Well, they can’t. Simple as that. 

So if an agency pushes recruitment a little too much, this may be a sign that their training and support are lacking and agents do not get the help they really need.

If you want to find out the branch’s focus, ask a few questions during your interview. You could ask questions such as:

  • What is the company culture?
  • Is production more important than recruiting? 
  • What are your starting commission levels? 
  • How do you get higher commission levels?

Know what you’re getting into so you can make the best choice. Avoid getting involved with an agency that doesn’t give you the best foundation. 

Pros Of AIL

The pros mentioned on Glassdoor are as follows:

  • “The hiring process was quick – I was hired during my first interview.”
  • “If you’re a good salesperson and enjoy sales/cold calling/driving around to knock on doors, it’d be a good option.”
  • “It’s simple work, just put in the effort and follow the system.
  • “Work as much as you want Un Capped Commissions

Cons Of AIL

Some comments and reviews on Glassdoor comment on the following:

  • “100% commission and you have to pay for all your own expenses.”
  • Super competitive atmosphere and the beginning agents are treated like crap, while the higher ups are like royalty.”
  • “You work close to 50 hours a week and unless you make a sale, you get paid ZERO”
  • “Tough 1st year HAVE to be resourceful and find ways to win Not for people that dont want full time positions”
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Independent Agent Vs. Captive Agent

There are two different types of agents, Captive and Independent. The difference is very important. 

An independent agent is able to sell multiple insurance products from different providers. This is great because it allows the agent to give their client the best possible plan. 

They can compare and contrast and provide more options. This means clients are usually more satisfied and may keep their plans longer. 

Agencies that use this independent model provide more freedom and flexibility for their agents. The agents are not locked into selling only one insurance product. 

Captive agents can only sell insurance from one provider and are unable to provide comparison quotes. These agents can struggle to provide the best coverage for their customers. 

It can often lead to an agent selling subpar insurance coverage and becoming dissatisfied with their work. 

This model is simpler since agents don’t have to learn multiple insurance products and providers. But with captive agents, clients may realize their coverage isn’t right for them and cancel more often. 

I would not recommend captive agents or agencies. I stand by the flexibility and freedom independent agents possess. 

  • Captive organizations may not “vest” you. This means you do not own or control your business. 
  • Commission with the captive model can be much lower than with independent models.
  • Many captive agencies fully buy into the MLM structure. This means you are sold this amazing lifestyle with exotic cars and trips but you only get that if you “drink the Kool-Aid” and recruit others below you. 

AIL Low Starting Commission 

With AIL, your compensation is 100% commissions. If you sell well, great. If you struggle with sales and landing clients be warned. This is not uncommon, many agencies pay solely on commission. 

Your income is based on your performance, and while this can be great it can also be very hard for new agents. 

That being said, I am a firm believer that sales can be learned. It’s a skill same as any. If you have the right training, tools, and feedback then you should do well. 

AIL pays their agents at a 50% commission. This may not be the same for all their insurance products, so do not be surprised if some products are lower. 

AIL’s commissions are lower than Symmetry, Equis, but higher than PHP and WFG.

AIL does not offer the best commission when compared with competing agencies. Even compared with my agency. 

For my agency, I start my agents off at 100% to 110% commissions level for final expense products. That is more than double what AIL pays. 

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Those in my organization pay for leads. Good agents end up with a lot more money because they know what they are doing, make a good commission, and follow up on high-quality leads. 

Get Comfortable With The Selling Process

AIL agents will start off an insurance pitch with “bait” like beneficiary benefits or a No Cost Child Safety Kit and then mid-pitch change the conversation to life insurance.

This can be frustrating for the prospect and confusing.

Some agents do not like this because they are uncomfortable starting a presentation under false pretenses. I lean towards being upfront about why I am there and what I am selling and most of the time, those I talk to really like that. 

Vesting 

I mentioned that captive agents may not “vest” you. Vesting is really important. 

Why?

Vesting describes ownership over your business. Being 100% vested means you own all of your business. 

If you are not 100% vested, guess what, you don’t own your business. Your future commissions and renewals are not yours. If you decide to strike out on your own and leave AIL, potentially  say goodbye to any future commissions. 

As far as I am aware, when working with AIL you are not fully vested until 10 years have passed. Check your contract to confirm this is the case.

Conclusion

AIL AO may be a good fit for some agents but most certainly not all. If you want simplicity then you may continue to consider AIL AO. 

But if you want to own all of your business, work as an independent agent, and make higher commissions AIL AO is might not be a good fit.

If you want to continue researching AIL, take a look at these resources:

  • AIL Training Manual – this will give you a good explanation of the sales and prospecting process.
  • There are a few articles criticizing the mass recruitment strategy many at AIL employ. You can read about these writers’ perspectives here and here.
  • Read up on well-regarded career review websites like Indeed.com and Glassdoor.com.
  • The Insurance Forums always has good reviews on organizations.
  • Like the idea of growing a downline outside of MLM? Check out these MLM review web pages for more ideas on affiliate marketing and their thoughts on AIL: Digital Business Creator, Smart Affiliate Success

If you want to be an independent agent and work with an agency that offers more freedom and 100% ownership over your business then consider my agency David Duford Group. 

To learn more about my agency and how I got started, read about me here. 

References:

  1. 223 American Income Life: AO Reviews | Glassdoor
  2. AM Best Downgrades Credit Ratings of Globe Life Inc. and its Subsidiaries
  3. American Income Life Insurance Company | Reviews | Better Business Bureau® Profile
  4. American Income Life Insurance Review 2022
  5. Contact American Income Life Insurance Company Agent AO in London, Ontario
  6. AIL AO LinkedIn

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