Success in any industry, relative to your competition, depends hugely on the customer experience you provide. How good is the insurance industry at providing a good customer experience? The numbers aren’t encouraging.
The latest EY Global Consumer Insurance Survey found:
14% – Consumers who are satisfied with communication received from insurers;
44% – Consumers who have had no interaction with their insurer in the last 18 months.
These numbers could be attributed to a lot of reasons, not least of which is the human-digital disconnect that is a peculiarity exhibited by insurance. People used to buy directly from agents, who also helped them with claims, renewals and other issues that arose. Insurance buyers never directly contacted the insurer or expected any communication from it.
But in the digital era, customers can research, compare and buy insurance online without talking to or meeting an agent, unless they need expert advice or clarification. According to a PwC report, 71% of consumers do some digital research (price comparison or social media) before purchasing insurance products.
If you want to drive insurance sales in the digital era, there’s an easy way to leverage your physical agent network for increasing digital sales and revenue.
See also: Underwriting, Marketing: Sync Up!
This is what I want to explain in this post – how to design and implement an integrated marketing strategy that your insurance agents can follow to generate leads online or offline, and get the commissions for resultant sales – also online or offline.
1. Social media marketing strategy for insurance agents
This is a feature we developed for Metlife recently, that won us the collab 3.0 EMEA contest organized by LumenLab, Metlife’s insurtech innovation lab. You can see the demo video that explains how easily agents can be social, and share relevant content that ends up generating qualified online leads:
Simply share an article you like with your prospects on social media. Make use of a plugin that shows them a lead form alongside the page. Your prospect fills in the form and requests a call back that goes to the agent who initiated the social share. These inbound leads are far more likely to convert than an outbound cold call.
This feature in your marketing stack is a great motivator for agents to be social with your customers. Help them identify target groups of customers on different social networks and encourage agents to engage with and be a part of that circle of people.
Inbound calls originating from referrals by known social connects convert a lot better than outbound cold calls or an agent sending a private message to unknown people who are not connected. The rest of the sales cycle, once the inbound call is added to your CRM, is the same as any agent-initiated sale.
2. Personalized micro-site for each agent
Now you have a social connect who filled in a form expressing interest in a particular insurance product and talked to the agent who sent the form.
The agent can now send a detailed proposal, which should include a link that takes the buyer to that agent’s microsite or page on the company website. It should showcase the agent’s bio and expertise and include links to the rest of the site for more information about the company and products.
3. Retarget leads based on interest and location
Now you have a lead that has been engaged socially, then expressed an interest in a product and has been contacted by an agent on the phone or in person. An email proposal has been sent, which the insurance buyer is considering.
See also: Does Your Structure Fit Your Strategy?
This is the right time to run paid retargeting ads – on Google Adwords, Facebook, LinkedIn and other media where your customers are likely to be. Show them a personalized ad based on the product, location and agent contacted. It keeps you in the buyer’s mind without having to call or email to follow up. Retargeting as the last stage of an integrated marketing strategy increases lead conversion rates by 27%.
How to get started with an omnichannel strategy for agents
As an insurer, you’ll need to collaborate with insurtech providers, which can help you define digital transformation for your business in a way that enables your agents to sell insurance instead of making them irrelevant.
Be prepared to:
- Open up your data sets to provide access through open APIs.
- Reinvent business goals into customer goals.
- Digitize existing manual processes to fulfill customer goals.
This should map your existing manual business processes into seamless customer-centric engagement across digital channels.
Implement an omnichannel solution that can make use of your APIs to provide your agents access to customer and lead data at every point in the sales cycle.