How to Grow an Agency People Remember
It’s no secret that the insurance market is crowded. As of May 2018, you, my insurance friend, are just one of nearly 300,000 agencies and brokerage firms.
I know what you’re thinking: “But I’m different.”
And I know what you’re going to say next: “I’m part of a major brand—one that’s big enough to have a mascot! I have experience! And expertise! I don’t just think about people’s current insurance needs! I think about what they need for the future! I genuinely care about my clients! I take care of them!”
I hate to break it to you, but you just described every single insurance agent I met over decades in the real estate business. I know you think you’re different—and maybe you are. But in the eyes of prospective clients and would-be referral partners, you’re just not. They can’t remember if you’re part of the duck club, a member of the gecko team, or if you magically appear when someone starts humming a particular tune.
Be honest: I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know. If you didn’t blend into the rest of the pack, you’d be getting noticed. You’d have more business than you could possibly handle. You’d be so successful that you’d be planning your next vacation while you’re on vacation.
But that’s not what’s happening. Instead, you’re doing everything you can to get noticed—up to (and maybe including) putting an inflatable gorilla on the roof your office. You’re spending a maddening amount of money trying to buy people’s attention through “trinkets and trash”: pens, insulated tote bags, koozies, frisbees, and mountains of candy for your display at the home show. You’ve done the billboards and the vehicle wraps. And nothing’s working.
You know the definition of insanity, right? It’s doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. In the insurance world, the definition of insanity is this: Using the same marketing strategies, tactics, and gimmicks as every other agency and expecting to get noticed and win more business.
It just doesn’t make sense.
How Successful Insurance Agencies Win Business
Take a moment and think back over the last six or nine months of business. What percentage of policies did you write for new clients vs. returning clients? What percentage of new clients came to you as referrals, and what percentage came to you because they picked up your pen and a mint at an event?
Do you see what I see?
Businesses succeed when they do more of what works. And what works in the insurance industry is growing an agency through repeat business and referrals. Full stop.
To a certain extent, you control your repeat business. If you actually do take good care of your clients—if you’re honest, ethical, offer good value, and do what you say you’ll do—your current clients will keep coming to you. That has nothing to do with your mascot or your experience. It has everything to do with being a decent person.
If you want to grow your agency, you’ll have to get new clients. The most effective way to do that is through referrals. But not all referrals are created equal.
Natural Referral Partners for Insurance Agencies
It’s possible your current clients will refer their friends and family to you—but not at a rate that’s going to blow the lid off your agency. Instead, you’ll need to think about how to win referrals from another group of people: the ones who regularly interact with clients who have new insurance needs.
Your natural referral partners are realtors and lenders. Why? It’s the basic win-win scenario. All three industries—insurance, real estate, and mortgage lending—serve the same clients… clients who need all three industries at the same time. It’s the perfect, you-scratch-my-back-I’ll-scratch-yours set-up.
Stop. Read that last sentence again.
I mentioned at the top of this post that, as a realtor, I heard pitch after pitch from insurance agencies looking to “partner” with me to serve clients. I, too, care about my clients, so I was happy to take their card and “keep them in mind.” But as soon as they left my office, I couldn’t remember a thing about them. Not a thing! Nothing they said or did set them apart from the last agent that stopped by (usually with a branded pen).
I guarantee the same thing’s happening to you. You know referrals are important, and you’ve been honestly trying to work that angle—but you’re getting nowhere. You need something that’ll bump you to the front of the line. For realtors and lenders, that “something” is providing a compelling answer to “What’s in it for me?”
Let’s back up.
Imagine this: A young family just moved to your community, and they’re signing closing documents on their first house. They’re looking for a local insurance agency, so they casually ask their realtor if they have a recommendation. Their realtor mentally sorts through the pile of business cards on her desk and cannot remember a single one of their names. So she just says, “I do, but I’ll have to get back to you.” And she never does.
Now imagine this: Same situation, but because you’ve built up a mutually beneficial partnership with that realtor—with very little effort on your part—she can’t remember anyone’s name but yours. She shares your information, and you get a new client.
With RECAMP It’s Really That Easy
Learn how to snag more referrals and grow your business. Simply attend a RECAMP webinar, start using RECAMP systems, and generate referrals automatically. You’ll spend less time and less money and get more results.
“I’ve tried every marketing program the company has to offer. RECAMP® has generated more business than all the others combined.”
“The first year I used RECAMP®, it paid for its self in just a few months.”
“By consistently working RECAMP® my production is up 147% over last year.”
Learn how RECAMP can help you gain 30 new referral sources in just 60 days.
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