Enclosed you are going to find six critical steps that if you strictly follow, will make you more money than you have ever made selling insurance. This means focus and don’t skim this article.
Every year you are flooded with ways to improve your agency, but there is usually one question you’re asking yourself, “What can I do this year to make more money”?
I’m going to show you if you’ll just quit getting distracted and take the time to read this.
You see it all the time on google, “100 Sales Tips to Grow Your Agency.” Or, “100 Best Insurance Marketing Tips.”
And, inevitably, you end up reading through all 100 ideas and can’t seem to sink your teeth into any of them because you brain is fried.
Don’t waste your time.
Find a few key strategies you aren’t currently working now and add them to your agency for the upcoming year.
Set attainable and realistic goals for the year ahead and follow through.
You’ve probably heard me say this before, don’t chase shiny objects.
7 Proven Steps to Making More Money Selling Insurance
#1 Always Summarize Quotes
This step is critical when your sending quotes to new prospects via email. Whether you’re quoting life insurance and sending over a 20 page illustration or selling home and auto and sending over multiple pdf documents, you should always summarize.
Here is what I mean.
When you send a multi page pdf generated by the various insurance companies you represent, you have to remember most clients don’t know a thing about insurance. They are surely going to get confused.
This is why a summary sheet is so important.
What is my recommended solution?
Create a summary page that is consistent for every client.
Step 1) Create a template that has an intro, quote section, and call to action.
Step 2) Create a summary form for each client and save to their client file.
Step 3) Attached a copy of their summary sheet along with their quotes and instruct them to review the summary page.
By doing this you will create happier prospects and your conversions will increase due to the ease of doing business. We have had the most success doing this process with home and auto agents looking to increase their life sales.
#2 Strategic Partnerships – Surround Yourself with Successful People
I Love, love, love these!
We wouldn’t have survived in the insurance business without strategic partnerships. Having like-minded people with skills that compliment yours and that you can tap at a moment’s notice is an invaluable resource.
Partnerships will make you look bigger and smarter.
Sometimes they can even be an excellent lead source. Having core people in place who are advocates for your brand will help you continue to grow your agency.
Get out there and start asking for meetings. Take someone to coffee, lunch or even a simple phone call.
Tell them your objective is to learn more about their business and uncover some synergies.
The result – you will uncover opportunities.
What is my recommended solution?
You first need to identify the areas you want to grow your agency. Once you know that, the rest is easy.
For example, if you own a P&C agency and want to expand into life insurance—but you’re not sure how to start—then start looking for the movers and shakers in your area.
Or, don’t be confined by geography… search online.
The life agent doesn’t have to live in your area, especially if you are focused on selling more to existing clients. You get the appointment because you are a trusted source and then you let your smart “partner” make the sale.
Here’s how to execute like a well oiled machine!
Say something like, “Hey Joe, this is Drew Gurley. You don’t know me but I’m calling you because of your experience selling life insurance and I need some help. Do you have a few minutes to chat?”
If this person doesn’t respond positively, then hit the NEXT button and repeat until you find someone interested in growing their business and looking for a kickass partner like yourself.
Now that you have the conversation going, invite them to breakfast or lunch and tell them what you are trying to achieve and see if they are interested in helping you.
It’s that easy.
Do this enough and you will build some very lucrative strategic partnerships. I know this works because it’s exactly what I do.
What is my other solution?
I would partner with estate planning attorneys and offer to do seminars for them on their behalf and on your dime.
Here’s how it works.
Let’s say you’re an expert in social security planning. You can work with an attorney to conduct social security or Medicare seminars for their clients. This usually works best when it occurs at the attorney’s office.
- Send direct mail out to the attorney’s book of business
- Take 40 minutes to educate and leave 20-30 minutes for questions
- Assuming an average size conference room, limit your audience to 2-4 couples (8 attendees)
- Provide light snacks and drinks (I usually do deli sandwiches, soda, and water)
This is a great way to establish yourself as an expert and expand your prospect base. It also allows the attorney to add great value to their existing customers.
You’ll start to notice some consistency after the first few weeks of doing the seminars. People from the first couple of events will begin to follow up with questions and you’ll now have a solid list of follows up to start dripping (drip marketing is key to success here).
Spend an hour a week doing this and by the end of the year you’ll be shocked at the relationships you’ve built and the customers you’ve added to your book of business.
#3 Marketing Library – People Need to Know Who You Are and What You Do.
We all have our strengths and, for sales agents like us, marketing may not be one of them.
It’s important to have literature and brochures about who you are and what you do. Compile your core products and services available in your agency and create targeted brochures for each.
If you are selling home and auto, you need to have a marketing piece specific to home and auto.
If you are selling Buy Sell and Key Man policies, the same applies. Having professional-looking literature makes you look smarter and bigger
And so on and so forth for Annuities, Umbrella Coverage, Final Expense, General Liability, etc.…
The point here is you need to be prepared to be the absolute best at what you do. This doesn’t happen unless you are prepared.
What I would do…
Create a marketing library of the services your offer as well as individual selling sheets on each of those services.
Many local printing shops have in house designers who can help you. Or, you can contact a graphic design company to create a consistent look for all your pieces to make you look like a rock star to your clients.
The easiest way to do this is piggy back on what we have already done here at Redbird.
Below is a link to download a free services offered template which you can customize with your logo, services and contact information. We also have about 30 other documents you can access; you just need to ask.
#4 Cross Selling – Start Cross Selling and Round Out Your Accounts
Rounding out accounts is the low hanging fruit of a growth strategy. You already have a book of business that knows and trusts you.
If they aren’t buying from you, they are buying from someone else. This is a fact!
You may have a strong commercial lines book of business, but are you offering Key Man or Buy Sell agreements?
Did you know voluntary accident plans often reduce your clients’ workers comp claims?
Did you know that individuals turning 65 not only need Medicare options, but they should also be considering safe money options such as fixed annuities in retirement?
Rounding out your accounts can be simple when the offering makes sense. Plus, it’s easier for you to commit to cross selling when you are connected to the purpose of the new product you are offering.
Here’s my two cents on cross selling.
Start small and kick off two basic marketing strategies that won’t disrupt the day-to-day flow in your agency.
- Train your CSR team to ask a few basic questions. They are speaking with your clients on a daily basis and are the perfect folks to generate discussions which can be pivoted to new sales appointments. Along with asking the right questions, you need to stay in touch with your existing clients consistently.
- Start an email marketing campaign using video. My friend, Mike Demko at My Insurance Videos, has an excellent program that easily allows you to stay in front of your clients all year long. The greatest part about this is the ability to put the entire program on autopilot… you can set it and forget it. Using some simple techniques, Mike can have you up and running with an automated video email marketing campaign in literally 15 minutes. He has already created the content for you which is then branded with your logo and information. This will save you time and money and instantly separate you from your competition.
#5 Virtual Assistant – If you’re spread to thin, you can’t make any money!
Virtual assistants are a growing trend in business but still relatively new to the insurance industry.
Virtual assistants (VA) are an excellent way for you to delegate responsibility and free up time to complete your core sales activities. Plus, they are much more affordable than a traditional assistant. This can be good if you’re new to the business.
How much time are you wasting following up with your carriers on commissions?
Are you calling to get beneficiary change forms?
How long did it take you track down a policy that the insurance company claimed it never received?
Your virtual assistant could work a few hours each week to track all your commissions and reconcile your reports. They could call and get all your required forms for your upcoming policy delivery.
You can even have them calling existing clients to schedule policy reviews.
They can complete all of these are activities which are burning your precious sales time.
What is my recommended solution?
Hire a virtual assistant and start off-loading responsibilities to free up your time to sell and grow your business. The costs are minimal compared to what you’re losing by not focusing on what’s most important in your business.
If you’re curious how to best utilize a virtual assistant, here’s a great guide to help you learn more.
#6 Insurance CRM – Work Smarter and Stay Organized…This is a key element for Top Producers
Don’t get intimidated.
If you don’t have a CRM now that’s ok, but you really should consider it. Having a CRM in your insurance agency is going to help you keep track of your clients and maximize your sales efforts.
Let’s say you’re a Medicare agency and have 2,000 clients and want to filter all your clients who will be impacted by network changes in their local HMO plan. You can simply use your CRM to filter based on the information you are looking for and pop out the exact list you need.
Another way to use a CRM is by creating your daily call list. This will help you ensure you are consistently reaching out to all your clients throughout the year.
One of my favorite automatically generated call lists are clients I have yet to complete an annual review with. The CRM will auto-generate this list and I can then send it to my Virtual Assistant to start calling and scheduling.
After all, we’re in a relationship business.
Without a CRM, you may not be able to effectively create and execute ongoing marketing and communication plans.
What is my recommended solution?
Find a CRM that keeps your costs down but allows you to manage the core tasks which drive your business.
Don’t get stuck on the bells and whistles, you can worry about that later. And, you no longer have to buy an expensive software program… you can simply pay a small monthly fee and get access to the same high-powered capabilities the big boys use.
Some of the more popular options for CRM for insurance agencies are Agency Bloc, Zoho, and Radius Bob.
#7 Social Media – Become a sensational tweeter 🙂
Social media isn’t just for high school kids.
Living in 2017 as an insurance agent, salary remains one of the toughest parts of the business to manage as more and more consumers are buying online.
Think about it, if more buyers are online, shouldn’t you be there too?
Millions of dollars each year are made through connections on social media.
If you’re scared of it, have someone else do it for you (like your virtual assistant).
Social media allows you to establish yourself as a leader in your space, in this case, insurance. You are the best at what you do and should portray that to your social networks.
Use social media to help people get connected with you when they need someone to solve their problem.
What is my recommended solution?
Find a college intern.
You can have them help you with a social media strategy and then put them to work helping you to execute. By doing this you will be able to focus on creating the content you know your followers need and leave the technology side of things up to your intern.
They will put together your posting schedules, manage your multiple accounts and even help you identify influencers which may share your content and build your following.
You’ll be sharing viral content in no time and your clients will see you as the go to person to help solve their problems. Go check out your local college and find a hungry intern looking for experience in the real world.
Conclusion: Work Smarter, Not Harder if You Want to Make Money Selling Insurance
Sales are the life blood of your business and anything that gets in the way better be mission critical.
By considering the 6 tactics listed above, you’ll be growing your insurance agent salary in no time. Knowing how to build strong relationships, increase your personal brand, pivot discussions, delegate responsibility and focus on your customers is a sure fire way to increase your sales year after year.
More sales, more money.
We see this happen all the time and it pumps us up!
Taking steps to implement new strategies and step outside your comfort zone is exactly how the successful insurance agents separate themselves from the unsuccessful ones.
They are taking more risks, getting uncomfortable and learning new ways to improve. And, they do it all the time.
Strongly consider what we have listed above and see for yourself how you can change the pace of your sales in the coming year.
As always, we would love to hear from you. If you have any questions or comments, please call 866-547-8780 or email [email protected]