Successful Strategies Using Internet Lead Marketing
One of the main complaints I hear from an Insurance Business Owner struggling to find new customers is that “customers are just not shopping like they use to”. With the do not call restrictions, private or unlisted phone numbers and caller ID’s it appears that no one is buying anything today.
However, what swept the Banking Industry over a decade ago and what are dominating new and used car sales in today,s market has found its way into the Insurance Industry. Consumers want to shop online for their insurance. The sad part is that the Insurance Industry has been a ‘Johnny Come Lately’ to realizing this movement. Insurance Agents were afraid that if online insurance sales became a real trend that they would no longer be a necessary part of the transaction.
By adapting to internet sales, they would be making themselves obsolete. The solution: ‘Ignore it and it will go away’. The only problem was they forgot to tell the shopping consumers. Instead, consumers have made the search term ‘Auto Insurance’ the second most searched item in the Financial Industry according to a recent study by Forrester Research. The old adage that you have to give the customer what they want could not be any truer today. The lesson to be learned is USE the internet as one of you marketing strategies to survive in today’s marketplace.
There are a variety of ways that an individual Agent and large Brokerage Companies can market online. The scope is so large, that in today’s article, we will concentrate on one of the easiest ways to participate in the marketplace. It is what I like to call ‘Passive/Active Marketing’. There are many lead aggregators out there who job is to advertise to get shopping consumers to talk with you. These companies basically take away the set up and maintenance of building your own website and SEO strategies (we’ll talk more about this technique in future articles). In return, there are some concessions you make to work with these companies.
First, in most cases, you are in a competitive nature. The lead provider is going to deliver the lead to more than just you. In most cases, that number should be around five. Secondly, you must learn how to weed through the ‘Fat, to get to the ‘Meat’. Now, competing on a daily basis with other companies should not be an issue. You do it every day now, whether you know it or not. Working through the ‘Fat’ is just another way of saying: you have to work if you want something to happen.
In today’s article I am going to help you with some of the successful strategies that I have learned over the years to make you more successful with Internet Lead Marketing. I have it broken down into three steps that I like to call my ‘Internet Lead System for Sucess’:
1) Immediate contact
2) Relentless Follow-up
3) Let’s be realistic… it’s a numbers game.
Today, I am going to talk about ‘Immediate Contact’ and why it is important to your marketing strategy. I like to call it ‘Get a Consistent Contact Strategy or 5 Reasons to be First to the Prospect’. When you understand that being the first person to talk with the consumer, you will learn to make this a priority in you marketing strategy. You will make all efforts to attempt contact within 30 seconds after receiving the lead.
Get a Consistent Contact Strategy or 5 Reasons to be First to the Prospect
1) COMMON SENSE — It just makes sense and it’s the right thing to do. Treat your internet lead as if a customer just walked into your office. Because that’s just what they did. They walked into your virtual office. If a customer were to walk into your office and you ignored them for 30 minutes, better yet, you stood up and walked into the back to eat lunch and when you came back you listened to and returned phone calls to all the customers that left voice messages while you were on break, and yet you didn’t even say hello to the customer that walked into your office… you get the picture. Strive to make immediate contact.
2) THE CONSUMER went to the internet because they are busy. If they only have time for one 15 minute conversation, don’t you want that conversation to be yours?
3) RESPECT your prospect enough to return their call promptly. Not calling an Internet inquiry is like leaving a “I want insurance” message on your voice mail unreturned!
4) DON”T let another non customer focused Insurance Agent give the consumer a bad experience. You just received a lead and it took you 20 minutes to call the customer. You get the customer on the phone and with a smile in your voice; you are ready to give your best sales effort only to be told from the customer that ‘I’m just not interested anymore’. End of call. The problem was, you allowed someone else to talk and they either gave the best presentation or they gave a sales pitch that completely turned off the customer to the whole experience. Didn’t anybody tell the customer that I paid for that lead and that they should talk with me? Instead of looking at it that way, put yourself in the customers shoes. If it took you that long to get back to me when I wanted some information, I am afraid to see how long it will take you to call me when I have a real insurance emergency.
5) MAKE YOUR NEXT LEAD CALL a monumental mountain of objections. I call it ‘Setting Competitive Trap Doors’. Understand your product and your competitor’s products. Sell the benefits of your product to the consumer. Focus on the person. People buy from people in a sales process, not a price or a clever hard closing line. By selling the benefits of your product to the customer and showing them how that can help them should they ever need to use it, you have made it easier for you to call back and engage in another conversation with the customer.
On your first phone call all you said was my price is $500, the customer has no reason to talk with you again unless they liked $500. If you said this policy has a vanishing deductible or that we have an accident forgiveness program, you can tell the customer that you can try to make their premium as low as possible today and in the future should something ever happen. That way, when you call back, you can ask the customer if anyone else was able to offer those benefits that you spoke about. Your chances of looking like you provide more value than your competitors is increase tremendously.
As I mentioned, Internet Marketing is broad in scope. I only touched on one topic in today’s article. I hope that you found the material to be informative. I look forward to bringing more topics to help you harness the power of Internet Marketing.