Building Rapport from Afar with Auto Insurance Leads

Fran Majidi
May 20, 2020
Building Rapport

If you’re like most insurance agents, you understand how important it is to interact face-to-face. When you sit down and take time to get to know the person you’re hoping to serve, not only are your chances of making a sale greater, but you’ll be better equipped to help them with their every need. Let’s break down all the things that work for you once you have a client in your office and see how we can take all those elements and inject them into the virtual experience. 

Like it or not, FaceTiming and meeting on Zoom through a computer camera may be as good as it gets for quite a while. Even if there were a vaccine and all restrictions were lifted tomorrow, most people post-coronavirus would still seek a clinical shopping experience over a sit-down meeting with an insurance agent.

Don’t be discouraged. Instead, let’s get you set up to work your magic digitally! We have some tips here on how to make your Zoom or Facetime meetings work like a charm. We also have the best auto insurance leads to get you started.

Organic Conversation

Your tone of voice affects a conversation greatly, and it affects the person you’re speaking with more than any other element of a conversation. Sound is all vibration, so if you’re sending off good vibrations, you’ll get a positive response. It’s true! To do this, it’s important that you take a few minutes to gather your thoughts before you contact a lead on a video chat.

Breathe deeply before you get on Zoom. Choose a nice, moderate pace and smile. Everything you say will sound more positive through a smile. Lower your pitch just a notch. And remember to avoid talking fast or chaotically.

Don’t skip the small talk and chit-chat, either. What’s the rush? Take your time and ask open-ended questions that will hopefully get your client to relax. What you’re trying to gather is this person’s deeply held beliefs and cues about a certain lifestyle.

When possible, find out more than about the lead’s job than a title will tell you. How long has the company been around? How long has this person been working there? Ask about hobbies and see if there’s anything you can connect with, like sports, TV shows, home renovations, books or how the coronavirus has impacted their family. Try anything that will get this person to open up.

Repeat what the lead says if it’s brief, or just the last three words of their last sentence. Or, say, “I see,” “that’s right,” or something you’d usually say when acknowledging a speaker. Let them know you’re listening attentively.

Echo their emotions. If they just got laid off, saying, “It sounds like you’re feeling stressed” exudes empathy. Follow up with, “I’m here to help.” You don’t know how magical those five simple words are right now. But be earnest.

Hopefully, you’ll soon be able to tell if they are a conservative or a liberal, a TV junky or a sports junky. You’ll glean whether they have a struggling business or they just bought a home. You need all this information to know what kinds of auto insurance discounts you can apply, how many other policies you can talk the client into switching for an added bundle-discount and more. It may take you talking about yourself a bunch to get them to share all this personal stuff, but you love to talk. That’s why you sell insurance. Next.

What Are You Wearing?

Your clothes will be the next thing that matters after your tone of voice. It’s the first thing people will see in a video chat. It’s easy to be casual in a post-coronavirus world, and you may be working out of a home office, but your clothes don’t need to scream Sunday. Even if you don’t wear a suit (which may be overkill), wear a crisp collar shirt to set a positive tone. No one wants to secure their financial assets with someone in pajamas, a t-shirt or a Hawaiian shirt. No one.

Eye Contact

You’re still making eye contact on Zoom, as weird as it may feel seeing yourself in the corner. Avoid looking at yourself while you’re in a meeting with the auto insurance lead. To make eye contact look into the camera. When the other speaker is talking, it’s fine to look at them as well, but when you want to emphasize something you’re saying, do look straight into the camera, which will have the same effect as looking someone directly in the eye.

Body Language

Position yourself so that you’re not in the prospect’s face. Pull away a little and sit up straight (but not stiffly) so they can still see your torso, arms and hands. Now, you can be natural and act just as you would if you were in your office, sitting face-to-face with this client. When possible use open arm gestures, show the palms of your hands (“I have nothing to hide.”). Avoid abrupt and sharp movements, which convey unpredictability. Whatever you do, don’t hide your hands or cross your arms. These things just give off the air of dishonesty and may set off a red flag.

Backdrop: Conversation Pieces

College degrees, accreditations and awards are all great things to show off. Create a Zoom center from where you work. Place your awards and degrees in the background, within the shot. Which brings us to an important point: Make sure there is something solid behind you, for instance a wall (with your degrees/awards) or a bookshelf. While it’s fine for you to see little kids running around behind someone asking you for an auto insurance quote, it’s a little awkward if they see yours doing the same. You still have to look “business” even if you’re in the middle of the prospect’s living room.

Remember that you’re shooting at an angle that gets your whole torso in the frame, so you’ll likely be able to see what’s on your desk. You’re still making a good first impression, so clear away your vape pen or other personal items. Have your nifty conversation opener in the frame. This can be anything that says something about you. Keep it business with a splash of personality, like an alumni knickknack, which may help you begin building rapport with your auto insurance lead.

And don’t forget the most important part of all this: Buy high-quality, reasonably priced auto insurance leads from SmartFinancial.