Being an insurance agent is a game of relationships and is therefore one of the more social career paths available. Networking within one’s own community is vital for new insurance agents, but even veteran agents need to re-scour their neighborhoods to meet new faces.
Neighborhoods and communities are always shifting, with families moving away and new people moving in. Over time, demographics can shift and change dramatically too, creating new possibilities to meet new members of the community with entirely different insurance needs.
Networking basics dictate the constant need to be involved in joining organizations, chambers, attending conferences and meetups, clubs (of all types) and pretty much joining any online communities and any network you can latch onto. Here are some other vital tips:
Fast and Targeted Networking
As for creating a network, insurance leads are great. Networking events are important but not as immediate and relatively cheap as bought leads, when you consider the fact that you can spend more time establishing and developing relationships than in meeting people who need insurance. The fact of the matter is that insurance shoppers are buying insurance differently nowadays. If they could, they’d bind a policy online but even when that’s not possible, many people are using the Internet at some point in their shopping process. Why not buy leads from a company that collects data from shoppers who are actively looking there too? Live transfer calls are a bit more expensive and even more effective because the shopper is on the phone and ready for a quote. Depending on the zip codes you choose as your target area, you may talk to someone who lives down the street or a few towns away. If you have a license to operate in other states, you can grow your network beyond your home base without ever leaving home. Everything is virtual these days, so the agent with the ability to buy in as many states as possible will do well using leads is a surefire way to grow your base in several pockets of the country.
Most consumers are not going to events based on their insurance buying needs, correct? So how do you choose which networking events will work for you and which are a waste of time? The first step is to ask yourself what you want to sell and find events where people who need the lines of insurance you are selling will most likely be. If it’s home insurance you’re trying to sell, there are many options for home improvement events near you. Home remodeling and decorating shows take place in convention centers in most cities! Home and garden shows abound, usually in summertime.
Did you know that most moms pay mortgage payments? Also, home insurance is usually bundled in the payment (unbeknownst to the insured!). Make it your job to perfect an elevator pitch about the fact that most people pay too much for homeowners insurance, especially if it was chosen by their lender, who is not overly concerned with saving them money.
Attend mom-focused functions and become active in local schools. Volunteer for activities that abound with moms. When it comes to creative marketing ideas, insurance agents need to think outside the box to create their own leads.
If you’re looking to make auto insurance sales, getting the homeowner to switch a home insurance policy and bundling that policy with auto for a discount is more money in your pocket and big savings for your insurance client.
How do insurance agents get clients? By being there and making genuine connections. You can’t make a connection if you don’t show up. Don’t rely on calls alone. A handshake or a smile goes a long way.
What Is Social Networking?
Social networking sites are the same social media channels the kids use. If “social networking” is a catch-phrase you keep hearing but you didn’t know what it means, chances are that you’re not all set up. Even if you don’t have more than a landing page or two as a website, you still need to be very active on social media.
Get your business pages ready to go and your accounts fired up on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and maybe even Snapchat. Make quick 30-second videos and post your lovely face online and do your elevator pitch for a wide audience. Or, get off topic and share your community involvement, which will ultimately be more rewarding than a sales pitch and is more likely to garner attention. Don’t neglect this step: Business networking requires social media activity. It’s just how it works these days!
If you’re wondering how to market insurance online, just remember that you want to come across as caring, warm, kind, even funny. Create hilarious videos, touching videos, witty memes--the best marketing ideas for insurance agents are campaigns that move people. Anything that will lead to a human connection will work to your benefit. Experiment and figure out what works and what doesn’t. See what your more successful competitors are doing. For a new insurance agent, marketing ideas may be slow to come. Resist the urge to be a copycat. Don’t replicate your competition’s campaigns but get a sense of how it all comes together. You really don’t want to steal the ideas of other people--and not just because it’s bad sport, but also because everyone is unique. You want to be genuine and true to who you are in every social media post, especially as someone who serves a very real need in your community.
Stay in Touch
The best leads and the best commissions often take a while to close. Stay in touch with your leads until the bitter end. Never assume that the door is closed until you hear a firm no. The same goes for buying insurance leads. You should be contacting a lead at least 8 to 10 times before hanging up your hat. If you’re out to genuinely help people, it will come through and you will sell policies.
Do Insurance Networking Groups Help?
Generally speaking, unless you sell several verticals, another agent is not out to help you by giving you leads. However, Insurance groups and Insurance Professionals Meetups are a great way to meet others doing exactly what you do. You can share stories, learn from each other and de-stress. There are many benefits to meeting others with the same struggles as you have and learning from others will help you prevent making mistakes along the way too.