At SmartFinancial we believe that balancing life and work is important. Your personal goals should always come first, your sales goals second. If you're not happy, your work will suffer so hopefully, you're eating and sleeping well while tending to your personal life. Inevitably these types of improvements will spill over to your job as an insurance agent too. As an insurance agent, you are not just selling insurance products -- you are also selling yourself. The more balanced and happy you are, the more people will be drawn to do business with you. When goal setting, remember that you need to be the best you and that's a great place to start. Your agency will be all the better for it.
As for setting business goals and sales goals, we've listed the top 10 ways to increase your sales over last year to help you truly flourish! SmartFinancial agents take pride in working closely with insurance agents and insurance agencies by helping to set objectives that will bring you the results you want.
Sales Goal #1: Setting up efficient processes.
If you've been selling insurance for decades now, you've seen so much change. Remember the days when there were "Internet Teams" on staff dealing only with one static web page? These days, everyone is on the "Internet Team" and using online resources for everything from finding leads to paying employees. It's hard to imagine a time when we were so inefficient, but we were. Many of us still are, especially if we're intimidated by technology. This is why Business Intelligence (BI) is a hot topic amongst insurance agents right now. BI is the use of technologies, applications and practices that enable the user to analyze data pertaining to the business so as to make good decisions. Using BI and new technologies to your advantage will be a hugely profitable step to take in 2019. Whether it's hiring an Excel master to show inefficiencies in your processes or it's buying leads from a reputable ad-technology company, you'll be boosting profits with fewer losses.
Sales Goal #2: Become more visible.
People want to do business with good people so when setting goals, avoid looking like a ruthless agent. Smart goals are in line with an insurance agency's ethics and values. Incorporate them in what you write about the company, and showcase them on your website and in marketing materials. Involvement in charities and non-profits can bring you some very positive exposure too. GuideStar, Charity Navigator, and Give.org can help you find legitimate charities. There are countless events to participate in, too. Whether you're walking for breast cancer, feeding the homeless or holding a cupcake tasting to end hunger, make sure to take great pictures and videos and stream them on social media. Write press releases and pay the extra charge so that media outlets pick up on the event. While you probably won't get mentioned in the bigger papers, local ones may very well mention you and publicize the event!
Sales Goal#3: Meet client needs.
Are you keeping your existing clients happy? Is there a way that you can simplify their payment methods or save them a few dollars a month? Are you able to bind online yet (some agencies are doing it and others are well on their way)? Your top business goals should including finding ways to make your clients' lives easier. Can your auto client, who just bought a new RV, bundle his motorhome with his home and auto accounts for convenience? While you're at it, can you find a carrier who will offer a savings if he buys all these policies in one place? More often than not, insurance agents only feel like they have to answer to the carriers, but it's just as important to go as far as you can to keep the clients happy or give them an unexpected bonus to show them that you've got their backs. They are, after all, the ones who pay your bills--and other insurance agents are eyeing them.
Sales Goal #4: Stay aware of trends and new products.
There are new risks these days with all the new technologies out there and the insurance business is full of relevant products to mitigate losses. While advancements in technology are supposed to make our lives easier, they do sometimes create more risk. For instance, there's now cyber crime with crooks stealing data from business computers. Even your personal life is more vulnerable, with thieves figuring out ways to outsmart the smartest smart homes and steal cars by manipulating the safety features you spent thousands of dollars on. There's never been a better time than now to sell insurance products around the new threats posed by technology. Cybersecurity insurance, anyone? How about self-driving car insurance? If your insurance agency is able to provide peace of mind with the right products, you can easily achieve your goals while making your customer happy.
Sales Goal #5: Shake things up.
Disrupt the agency by testing new strategies. When people get too used to a routine, creativity dies. If you play music in the office, change the station. If you don't play music in the office, start doing it. If you manage people, change up their routine by assigning a project: maybe a group project if it's something new. Try to shift things around every few months, preferably every quarter. Take notes on what works and what doesn't. Whatever you do, don't let people's routines get too stale.
Sales Goals #6: Improve your website.
If your website feels like an afterthought, it probably looks like one, too. These days it's more important to have a fresh and thorough website than it is to have a business card. Everyone searches for a company's website if they are interested in the services. Not only should you consider hiring professionals to build you a professional one, you should consider hiring a content manager who knows a thing or two about search engine optimization. That person could bring you some much needed traffic. Also, don't forget to ask clients to write testimonials about your services so you can publish them online. People listen more to what others have to say about you than what you have to say about yourself.
Get on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Even Pinterest may end up working for you. And don't forget Instagram, even Tik-Tok. Agencies with smart social media advertising campaigns do see results that help sales goals.
Sales Goal #7: Increase your volume of leads.
It seems like obvious advice: Grow your leads and you will grow your sales. But how? You should really network as much as you can. Get existing clients to refer you by offering gift cards. We have lots more advice on how to grow leads in our free downloadable white papers. And yes, with all the competition out there, you do need to buy leads! SmartFinancial can help you access shoppers when they are ready to buy insurance.
Your agency can only set so many marketing goals because it's expensive. So is hiring a social media manager. We're not saying you can't do it, but it costs money to have content writers and SEO managers while also advertising your agency. Your growth plan using leads should be to understand that sales goals will depend on how many you buy and how much you're willing to invest. Remember that you may not see an ROI from buying leads for several months, if not a year. It's renewals that will pay for the cost of buying the leads. Progress is what you're after, not a make-it rich quick scheme (although some agents do see both!).
Sales Goal #8: Make work more fun.
Agency owners also need to a way to make the agency an inviting place to be. We're not saying that you need to tap a keg in the middle of the office, but taking your agents out for drinks or dinners once in a while may not be a great place to discuss sales goals and business goals.
Also, make it a goal to simply take time out of the day to just catch up with each agent. Maybe coordinate walking meetings instead of using the conference room. Why not buy that foosball table you keep joking about (but really want)? You know what makes sense in your office so ask team members what they would like to see. Sometimes agency goals may be as simple as finding a way to DJ some music in the office.
Sales Goal #9: Get in touch with the quiet ones.
Often, it's the clients who never call to insist that their rates are too high that quietly go away when you least expect it. Evaluate your history and see if this holds true for you too. In your downtime, begin calling clients you haven't heard from in a while. Ask if anything has changed in their life (marriage? new job? a move?) that may bring down their rates. Listen attentively because the more information the better: if they have a new job, that may mean a new business insurance commission. If they bought a house, see if you can beat their current rate by bundling it with their auto. If you already have a client's house insured, see if you can add on flood and earthquake insurance (people wrongly think these coverages are included in a standard policy). A whole host of things may have happened since you last spoke. Not only will simple check-ins retain your business, you may be able to upsell and cross-sell too.
Sales Goal #10: Re-evaluate past successes and failures.
All agencies have their pain points. Take a good look at some of the failures your agency has suffered over the past few years. Which agents are not meeting sales goals?
An agency owner's failures are chances to learn: that's why you suffer them. Make it a goal to do a thorough analysis because the wise learn and turn around their luck. The foolish keep making the same mistakes and setting the same goals only to never reach their desired ROI. Setting goals is only half the battle. The best salespeople hone their skills through trial and error so you need to learn patience.
Don't forget to pat yourself on the back for the things you do well either. It's important to recognize both our strengths and weaknesses whenever we try to improve upon ourselves as insurance agents.