Spotlight on NBC | Meet Bob Miller of Brightway Insurance
Bob Miller has owned the Brightway Insurance business near Palencia with daughter Cheryl since 2014. Prior to that, he had mostly worked in corporate insurance, except for a 10 year stint working for JC Penney Insurance, located inside JC Penney stores all over the country. Living in Nocatee since 2009, he said he and wife Lynda are on house number 11 in eight states. Miller holds degrees in marketing and risk/insurance from Ohio State University.
Q: What is your business’ “edge?”
A: Brightway is an independent insurance agency that is part of a franchise. I’ve always wanted to open my own insurance agency, so I talked to my daughter and we felt this was something we could do together. Brightway set up a template of the office/systems/advertising that we need. Basically, they gave us the playbook and we just had to execute. We offer personal lines of insurance and have more options than many agencies — dozens of homeowners and auto insurance companies. Our “edge” is that we offer each customer the right coverage for them at the best price.
Q: What is a typical day like for you?
A: It’s mostly spent in the office, although I do a lot of networking, like through the St. Johns County Chamber. We built our business on networking — word of mouth and referrals. I believe it is important for a business owner to get out in the community and meet people.
Q: What was your best business decision?
A: I’d say opening the agency with my daughter and making the decision to build the business by networking, rather than via buying leads like some other agencies do. Joining the Chamber was also a good business decision.
Q: What is your long term goal?
A: To slowly but surely retire and let my daughter take over as the agency owner.
Q: What would you tell business owners about the North Business Council?
A: The St. Johns Chamber is one of the best chambers of commerce you could hope for. Specifically, the North Business Council offers a wide variety of events and you can choose to attend as many or as few as you would like. The North Business Council focuses on people doing business in this part of St. Johns County particularly and gives you the opportunity to connect with people in the local area.
Photo courtesy Bob Miller