Brainstorm with me for a moment. Clear your mind and tell me this…who is the FIRST insurance agent in town whose name comes to your mind (other than your own name of course)?
If we polled 100 people in your city and asked them to “name a local insurance agent,” who would they list?
Better question…Is it you?
Here’s an important thing to keep in mind when you’re working on getting more clients. It is absolutely mission critical that you be well known in your city!
Your prospects are going to have some sort of situation come up that prompts them to go in search of insurance quotes. They might buy a new car, put an offer on a house, have a nasty claim experience with their current carrier, or experience a rate hike. Whatever the situation, they are now in shopping mode.
So when they go to Google or open the phone book and starting looking for someone to call, who do you think they’ll choose?
Pretty simple…it’s the name that sticks out the most!
I find this to be especially true for captive agents. If a prospect can choose between eight different Allstate Agents, why pick you?
It’s all about becoming a local celebrity.
What’s a local celebrity? Well you may not be Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie, but people who live in YOUR town, will recognize you and your name!
Think of the local weatherman or that one guy from the annoying commercial you see at least twice a day. They’re your small town celebrities.
And you need to be one too. Because those who are most recognized are seen as the best, the experts, and the person to choose when shopping.
You can see why this is important. So how do you get your name out there?
Obviously advertising is a good place to start, but don’t just start throwing money in all directions. You need to be strategic with your marketing budget!
Talk to a wide variety of advertising reps and find out what kind of reach and response they can get you. Call the local newspaper, TV stations, radio stations, billboard companies, and local publications.
Ask the reps how they can help you track the response. Can you use a special phone number or website URL to make sure you know that the customer came from that ad? (This is called direct response marketing and extremely effective for small businesses!)
Tracking is your best friend when it comes to marketing. When you figure out what works, you can do MORE of it. But if you don’t know, you’ll waste a whole lot of money trying to get it right.
I love social media for the “getting known” factor. It’s an easy way to keep your name in front of your prospects every single day!
Make sure you are posting to your own social networks at least daily and encouraging your followers to “like” and comment on your posts. This engagement leads to more potential clients seeing your name!
You can also use Facebook ads to target local prospects. Create a simple ad with your name and headshot included and show to it to everyone between the ages of 25-65 (or whatever your target range) in your target zip codes. Test out different ads and see what converts the best.
This is so incredibly easy and effective.
Find a few organizations that are near and dear to your heart and start volunteering your time. I have been in the Junior League, volunteered at my son’s preschool fundraisers and led the local Tiger Den Boy Scout group. All of these things led me to meet a LOT of people.
And luckily for us, everyone needs insurance. Seriously, you will rarely run into someone who doesn’t have a need for auto and home insurance!
Volunteer, get known, and get quotes!
Similar to volunteering, make sure that you’re doing weekly networking. Go to the Chamber of Commerce events, join a lunch leads group, and scope out Meetup.com.
Find ways to get connected and you’ll land opportunities to build your brand name for little money and lots of exposure. But it doesn’t work if you aren’t actively attending each and every week.
Obviously all of these things take time (and some take a lot of cash), but you can multiply your efforts by cloning yourself!
You can attend weekly networking and join multiple volunteer groups, but imagine if there were two or three MORE of you doing the same thing?
If you have sales producers, they need to be actively seeking leads too!
It’s all an important part of building your name and brand reputation. But you can’t always do it alone. Think strategically about where your staff can connect and make a big difference.
Maybe your sales producer Tim loves soccer and wants to coach a team of 9 year olds in the spring. Urge him to do it! Make sure you can work with the schedule and then volunteer to sponsor the team! You get brand exposure, Tim gets a team of parents who could be potential clients, and you make a bunch of kids happy in the process.
Where To Begin
If you take nothing else away from this article, just remember this….
If you want to build a MEGA agency, you have to have a MEGA reputation. People need to recognize you when you go out to dinner!
Take Action Immediately
Make a list of 3 actions you’ll take this week to get started.
- Call TV station about advertising rates.
- Schedule one networking event each week on my calendar for the rest of the month.
- Have a staff meeting about volunteer opportunities.
You can do this! Get started right away.
Like this article? Help me spread the word and click one of the social media share buttons below!