So you’re up to your head in insurance leads… Whether you buy leads, run marketing campaigns consistently, or focus on driving new business through referrals, the prospects are flowing in. Leads of all shapes and sizes inquire. Potentially good deals, bad deals, good risks, bad risks, large premiums, and small premiums, all taking relatively equal bites away at from your teams time. And with every passing day, your team scrambles to service everyone calling the phone or inquiring online. And at the end of the day, a few people are left to be called back and a few fell through the cracks completely and were never followed up with.
Next day, it’s the same story, the phone is ringing off the hook, hot new leads are coming through the door and the leads from yesterday pushed aside. While overflowing with leads is a good problem to have, a new problem has arisen. You’re bleeding sales that you worked so hard and spent so much money to generate in the first place.
Yes, not everyone in your pipeline is a good lead. Some are hot and ready to buy insurance. Some will be tire kickers whom you’ve quoted 4 times in the last 2 months. Every so often you get a bad lead that by the grace of God your team turns into a good one. And frankly speaking, sometimes your team will fumble the ball on the 1-yard line. Regardless of lead quality, the fact remains the same, if you want to maximize the return on your marketing efforts, you’ve got to make a focused effort to defend what you’ve already generated.
The Opportunity Costs of Lost Sales
You can take back control simply by improving insurance lead management processes. For example, imagine that every month you attract 600 people to your agency. Of the 600, 500 of them walk away with a quote. Of the 500 who were quoted, 250 decide to buy, for simplicity sake, let’s say these were $1,000 policies. Now, of the 250 people who walked away, some of them were not good fits, obviously, but imagine if you had a real shot at winning 125 of those prospects? Well, then that’s $250,000 gained versus $125,000 lost or your opportunity costs. That $125,000 you left sitting on the table represent your most immediate opportunity for driving new business revenue. Why? Stay tuned and I’ll get back to this example in a second.
The 5 Key Areas of Insurance Lead Management
Lead management, simply stated, is what you do after you get the leads. Want to streamline your brand’s entire sales experience and improve conversions? Start by optimizing your insurance lead management processes. In the gray area between the lead generation and the lead conversion, we find the keys to us tapping into more of the lost sales.
Bleeding sales is a problem that every agency that generates too many leads experiences. Ready to stop the bleeding? Want to get a bump in new business revenue, increase your brand visibility (make it easier to be seen/found), and frankly, improve the way new and current clients and even the clients that lost you, feel about your experience? Then you have to start by analyzing your lead management. Here are the 5 key areas to pay attention to when improving your lead management:
The first step in managing the lead is to create it in the first place. Lead generation is the art of creating interest or inquires in your agency’s services. After you have attracted the interest of the consumer, you have to capture enough data to validate and prioritize their interest, at least. While lead generation comes in many methodologies and strategies, ultimately, it is important to be attracting the exact type of people that you want to do business with.
Lead Acquisition & Distribution
Lead acquisition is the first potential disconnect in the lead management processes. It’s what happens right after you get a new prospect to become *aware* of your agency. Yet and still, every day, insurance agencies across America spend millions of dollars advertising and creating that awareness around their brand, all to have the agency down the street ending up writing the new business. Once you get the lead hooked, whether that be their attention, their presence on your digital assets (website, social media, lead magnet, etc.), the speed, accuracy, and relevance of your response or call to action influences a potential client’s decision to buy, or not buy insurance from you.
For example, in our case at Infinity Leads, our main method of generating leads is using online search marketing and web analytics. We know from experience that every day, tens of thousands of people across the United States are using the internet to research and buy new policies. We also know that the act of turning internet searches into an actual live inquiry requires skillz. But furthermore, once the prospect is on the hook, the job is far from over. Our clients rely on us to provide accurate and exclusive data and to distribute said data to the right place, the right way, in real-time. On the other hand, we rely on our partner agencies to provide a timely and relevant response (client experience). Without the two, working in conjunction, the interesting prospect can’t truly become a lead.
Sales & Marketing Ops
This is the 2nd most important of the 5. Think of your insurance agency as being a restaurant. In a restaurant, the waitstaff brings and initiation communication with the customers, deliver the order to the chef, who then instructs the cooking staff to carry out the order for delivery. Orders lost, orders being burnt, orders delivering in the wrong order are all symptoms of poor operations.
In your case, burned prospects, lost deals, and even making the selling to the wrong clients are symptoms of one, not having a sales process, two, having a sales process but your team not following it. Once you get new lead data into your sales funnel it has to be collected and then distributed efficiently and effectively.
Marketing operations are the portion of your architecture that manages the analytics of the lead generation, distribution, and disposition. Sales operations focus on a fast, accurate method of distribution, in addition to improved management, accountability, and follow up processes for sales activity. At your agency, your “waitstaff” and your “kitchen staff” need to be on the same page. This alignment can be fostered using software, but ultimately, it’s about how orders (lead data) flows through your agency.
Lead management requires you to step back and examine at the way you communicate! And when I say communicate I mean it in two ways. Firstly, how your team communicates internally and secondly how you communicate externally to your leads.
Internally speaking, the two areas of focus can be boiled down to communications between executives and staff and communication between the sales and marketing team. Does your team follow the overall strategy laid forth by the CEO? Is your sales and marketing team in agreement on what constitutes a marketing qualified lead and sales qualified lead? Is there a service level agreement between the two?
On the other hand, external communications comprise of the nitty-gritty details such as the integrity of your database information, your phone and dial systems, and of course the big picture pieces like, the relevance of your communications, your company’s unique selling proposition and your ongoing nurturing communications that cultivate sales.
Analytics & Reporting
The last and arguably the most important. Once it is all said and done, you have to set up a tracking mechanism to track and measure improvements. By having a clear vision of your lead actions as they flow through your funnel, you’ll be able to tie insurance marketing results to marketing campaigns and channels. This is marketing attribution, or in other words, knowing to the T the key performance indicators of your agency’s sales performance.
For many organizations, being a pipeline marketing organization that optimizes for post lead metrics such as revenue can be vital in decision making that improves production, returns on investment, and the overall performance and cost benefits of their marketing and sales strategies.
Wrapping It Up
As a continuation from our example above. 125 potential prospects a month, $125,000 in revenue on the table. What if improving your lead management led to you capturing just half of those lost sales? That is $62,500 in revenue every month to your agency or a 25% increase in monthly sales. In conclusion, reflect on each of these 5 key areas and look to identify the bottlenecks in your process. Maybe your agency is a few tweaks away from driving massive and immediate increases in sales.
Agents, we’re finding that even the best agencies struggle and sometimes even drop the ball with lead management. Whether it be from having too many leads or not enough of the right kind, we can help. If you want to identify the bottlenecks in your system, learn how to automate your lead management, and stop bleeding sales, we’re here to help. Simply book a call with us right now and get access to the strategies here.