The insurance industry has always been built on relationships. This won’t change anytime soon. How we build and maintain those relationships, however, has changed significantly in recent years.
In digital marketing, we call this lead nurturing. The benefits of designing and automating a lead nurturing plan are considerable. Statistics show that companies with a mature lead nurturing plan:
- Generate 50% more sales ready leads at 33% lower cost
- Create leads that make 47% larger purchases than non-nurtured leads
- See a 10% or greater increase in revenue within six to nine months
The same goes for your independent insurance agency. Agency Revolution customer All Lines Insurance built a custom automated campaign designed to drive awareness and purchase decisions for all prospects it added to its sales funnel. Dubbed the Sales Pipeline campaign, it separates leads into one of several sub-campaigns based on data points in the management system. The result? All Lines grew its client count 14% in two years and now closes 33% more sales calls.
Lead nurturing breaks down into three main stages. Awareness, consideration, and decision making.
At this stage, your target likely doesn’t even know you exist. You need to build brand awareness and earn the trust of your audience. Try sharing content that provides helpful, basic information and establishes your insurance agency as a supportive member of the community you serve.
Social media content that demonstrates how you support your community or celebrates the people in your insurance agency is a great way to show the human side of your business. Helpful blog posts on your website or articles contributed to other sources will establish you as an authority on the services you offer. When sharing content, it’s important to lead people back to your website, where they can get to know your insurance agency and your staff better.
Managing all of this social media activity in a timely manner can be a time consuming task—as is maintaining a useful website or informative blog. There are many social media scheduling tools that can ease your efforts, but we recommend using a platform that allows you to manage it all in one place. As Charles Bettendorf, Marketing Associate at Lofton Wells Insurance said, “Managing [our marketing] in a single hub keeps us from feeling scattered and overwhelmed, improves our agency performance, and enhances our reputation in the community.”
At this stage, you need to gain contact information and determine if a prospect is a fit for your insurance services. It’s time to double-down on being a useful resource. Deliver content that can save money, keep them protected, or better educated about the things that matter to them. A fire-safety checklist for restaurant owners or a what-to-know guide for new homeowners. Right now you should be focusing on solutions to your audience’s common problems, not selling services.
While gated content—requiring the prospect to give their email address and other information in exchange for the content—should be used at all stages, it’s most necessary here. The types of content they exchange their information for will help you determine what their needs are and how you can best serve them. This is the stage you’ll begin separating your leads into different buckets so you can nurture them most effectively in the final stage, decision making.
Now your prospects know who you are, and you know what they need. They’ve demonstrated that they have things that need to be insured, and you’ve demonstrated that you’re a trustworthy insurance expert that understands those things. You can start getting more company-centric with your messaging.
Once a prospect enters one of your defined buckets, you’ll want to trigger emails directly demonstrating how you can help. Send case studies or client testimonials from people with similar insurance needs, or even a direct pitch of your services. It’s important that all communications at this point speak to the needs they’ve expressed or that you’ve identified.
It’s not easy to build an effective lead nurturing plan, but it’s undeniably worth the effort. Thankfully, you don’t need to do this all on your own. Our Elevate™ customers work with a marketing coach that helps design campaigns just like this and build content perfect for your audience. Combined with a helpful website, automated email and social media tools, and a growing content library, this package is a recipe for guaranteed results for any insurance agency.