“All things being equal, people want to buy from those they like.”
This paraphrase from speaker and author Bob Burg says a lot about how to get insurance clients. Independent agents emphasize the relationship piece of the client acquisition equation, and rightly so. It’s the key differentiator for the industry and the best way to stand out from the constant marketing of the large captives.
But how and to where do you broadcast your agency’s value? There are some key elements to making your name known and making it stick.
In business and in life, the first experience with someone or something matters. Gather information from your prospects when you first meet them to find out what impression you’re giving potentials customers. Ask questions like:
- How did you find us?
- Have you heard about us from someone else? Was their association positive or negative?
- How was your first interaction with us? Did you feel comfortable and heard?
- How difficult or easy was it to get the information you needed?
- Did you feel understood and valued in your interaction?
- What can we do to improve future interactions?
Any information you can gather from an initial communication is valuable. It tells you a lot about how you come off to the world, and how you can improve your first impressions.
Find out how to get prospects to your door with our post on Getting Your Website Seen and Head
Let’s focus on the “all things being equal” piece for a moment. What does that mean? If a prospect is evaluating options and finds large differences or gaps in what you can provide, it’s an easy choice to say “no.” But, when there isn’t much difference in services and pricing, your strength as a local independent agent is going to shine more brightly.
You’ll get the second look by providing key table stakes for clients. Some of those stakes include:
- Being easy to reach. Today this means using modern and customary modes of communication: mobile, text, email, client portals, as well as the traditional phone, website, office, and mail.
- Sending a clear message. If you have expertise in a specialized area, highlight it. Consider making landing pages on your website specifically for prospects, sharing more detail about those strengths.
- Providing social proof. Prospects want to see that people like them have had a positive experience with your agency. Include client quotes, reviews, and stories on your website, social media pages, and in other materials to let prospects know they can trust you.
- Delivering quality service. Client experience is critical for retention. If it’s difficult to work with you, why would clients come back? Keep your service personalized and high-quality to make a great first impression turn into a reputation.
Discover some of the surprising ways that agencies get insurance clients
Third Times the Charm
There are prospects out there who simply want a the lowest quote and will buy from whoever happens to be there to supply it. You could try to compete for this business, but even when you win it, it still come with a price tag. In this case, the price is a low return for your efforts, and a client prone to turn over.
You want clients that stay with you beyond that first and second year and stick with you for the lasting third. How do you find those prospects that make for valuable clients, clients that stick, clients that your competitors also drool over? To be in the conversation with these clients, you need to do two things: 1) fill a need and 2) make your mark.
1)Fill a Need
All prospects have needs. It’s the reason they’re looking for service. But you face issues when a prospect can’t define their needs or you’re unable to meet them at the time. In many cases, the prospect knows their need in a vague sense and may believe it is being met by an incumbent. Your task is to understand the prospect’s situation so thoroughly that you can see the gaps in their risk understanding. Then, you can highlight, expand, and ultimately fill those gaps.
How you identify and fill those gaps is the art. You can leverage personal relationships, provide niche offerings, or use clever marketing materials. Whatever tools work to develop a prospect’s understanding of need.
Are you following these Four Principles to Gain Insurance Prospects?
2)Make Your Mark
In order to be in the conversation, the prospect has to see you as a credible source of information or a viable solution to their need. If this were a Google search you’d want to appear on the front page, right? Developing credibility can be achieved in a variety of ways such as:
- Referral from a peer
- Glowing reviews on your website
- Professional persistence and regular follow-up
- Quick, accurate answers to questions
The important thing is not to trade one of these for the other. The more ways you show credibility, the higher likelihood one will resonate with a prospect. Think about the things that make you a trusted advisor to your best clients. Amplify those qualities – they’re what make you a credible, reliable, partner.
Keep Moving Forward
There’s no limit to how much you can know about broadcasting your business and its value. Learn more about how to drive business and win sales on our blog. And, hear from our clients on how they grew their agencies.
The key is to keep learning. If you keep it up, you’ll be a five-star agency in no time.