Leading to Policies: Type Dictates Tactic

Most insurance agents get referrals from multiple sources and pitch their products different ways depending on who made the referral. For instance, you might approach your father-in-law’s business partner more formally than you would the friend of someone on your softball team—unless your father-in-law told you that his business partner was a jeans-and-T-shirt guy and you found out the softball friend was a high-powered attorney.

Knowing a bit more about each referral helps you consider how to treat them differently, right? In the same way, you should consider how to handle different types of leads. Where is the lead coming from? How interested might the lead be in purchasing immediately? What stage of the insurance-buying process are they in?

It might help to think about it in terms of selling coats.

SEM Leads
You’ve got a store full of coats in all sizes and colors. A woman hurries in and says, “I’m attending a wedding and need the perfect coat. Can you show me your selection?”

What do you think the odds are that you’ll make a sale? It’s certainly not guaranteed, but you’ve got a customer who knows she wants to make a purchase standing in your store. That’s a great sales opportunity.

SEM leads (search engine marketing leads)—like those provided by Hometown Quotes—are some of the strongest leads available. They are generated when someone goes online and enters insurance-related wording in the search bar. An ad appears related to their specific search. The shopper clicks on it and fills out a form with their information to request a quote. Like the wedding-goer, these shoppers are actively searching, which demonstrates a high intent to purchase.

Timing is important for all leads but less so with SEM leads. The woman who needs a coat is going to purchase one regardless. Speedy and responsive customer service could create such a positive impression that you make the sale. But she is truly shopping, so if someone else approached her first, it doesn’t mean you lost your chance.

Banner Ad Leads
Another way to generate leads is to use banner ads. Banner ads appear on webpages with content related to the ad. For instance, if you’re searching for a pair of shoes online, you may see a coat-related banner ad because both items are clothing-related. Banner ads can also pop up if you’ve visited a site before—called remarketing ads. These ads are reminders that the item is still available if you haven’t already purchased it.

Using the coat-shopping analogy, this is the equivalent of, “Hi. I was on my way to the shoe store next door when I saw the coats in your window. Would you mind if I tried a couple on?”

Sure. You’re happy to get this customer in your door, and you’re going to do all you can to make a sale. But you might have to approach the shopper slightly different from someone with high intent to buy, or accept the fact that your sale might come on another date. It is more important to approach this customer quickly, because their intent to buy isn’t as high. This consumer wasn’t necessarily planning to spend additional money that day, or they may realize they don’t really have time to try on a bunch of coats.

Social Media Leads
Social media can be a great way to explain your offerings and build a persona and reputation. Trying to acquire leads through social media is a strategy that can work well depending on the market, though these leads are often the ones that take the most time to solidify.

Basically, you’re opening up the door to your shop and standing there with a smile on your face. When someone walks past on the sidewalk, you give them a nod and, if they seem interested, invite them in to look at some coats. They may ignore you as they go about doing whatever it was they set out to do, or they may smile and say, “Not today.” But if you make yourself consistently available and friendly, you may entice them inside by reminding them enough times that you’ve got coats for sale and are happy to help them find the right one.

Hometown Quotes gathers leads all three ways, and then some. What makes us unique is that we separate our SEM leads from the rest of our quality leads so that you can work them a bit differently.

All leads that come from Hometown Quotes are interested shoppers who filled out a form requesting a quote. But some of these consumers will have more interest in making an immediate purchase than others. When you understand where your leads are coming from, you can better anticipate each shopper’s interest level.

In the coming weeks, we’ll continue to explore how to effectively work leads by looking at different ways to initiate contact with a potential new client and how to build rapport with them. If you’d like to learn more about the high-quality leads generated by Hometown Quotes, click here to get started or call at 1-800-820-2981 to hear more.

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