If you are reading this, you have heard of the 5 Forces for business growth. But which force will be the most impactful to the industry? Talent? Technology? Model? Experts? Funnels?
Marketing Funnels enable the industry to connect the need to the professional by offering guidance on products. The introduction of AI and machine learning will create stronger relationships both to the firm and product solution at a faster pace relative to traditional marketing efforts (mail, email, phone calls).
In the past, an agency would purchase a list, spend resources creating a marketing message, then blast it out to that list. They repeat this process each time creating a new message and sending it to a different list. It becomes difficult to measure success in this example. Is it the list or the marketing message?
Tech company, InsurAware, applies AI and machine learning to support agencies and individual producers. By identifying candidates with an interest in purchasing insurance, helping create a message that will resonate with them, and repeating this message to the same group of candidates.
This is more than a “selling process.” It’s a strategy that allows agents to be consultative by helping an individual personalize and implement the solution that’s right for them.
It all starts with signals of intent.
Cofounder of InsurAware, Patrick Bowen, explains “...these intent signals are subcategorized into six groups where other things that they are doing from a digital footprint browsing standpoint shows different buckets they are in. So, if they’ve risen high on let’s say retirement planning, then the agent could send a piece that speaks to that. If it's a new baby, then it could sound something like, is your family covered?
We try to help give the agent the best chance to touch on a topic that is relevant within that person's current situation.”
This method has proven to up the odds of hitting a potential candidate with a relevant message.
Why InsurAware? IMOs invest a lot of time researching the offering of a third party to deem them valid and successful.
Instead of an agent spending time vetting all of the emails in their inbox to find the right vendor solution for the message they are seeking to deploy, and they can rely on the IMO for the reference.
A number of our agencies have taken a step forward after we set up 1:1 demo’s of InsurAware’s system to sign up and start working with them to help their agency and agents.
One agency that engaged with InsurAware two months ago had their first data enriched and set 6 appointments out of the first 14 leads that were generated using the enrichment software.
Each of these appointments were individuals the agent had spoken to before, but had no idea they were now looking for life insurance. One prospect in particular was just remarried, and had a new baby on the way. After several targeted marketing campaigns created with the help of InsurAware, reminding the prospect of everything the agency offered. The agent called and since it was such good timing, was able to take care of the family’s needs.
Of the 6 appointments set, 5 were kept and 7 applications were submitted.
The revenue generated from the sales on the first round of enrichment alone exceeded the cost of an annual agent subscription.
InsurAware is highly effective in identifying buying signals from clients within an existing book of business.
“Typically, we ask for 1,000 contacts to start. In any enrichment we do, what tends to come back is about 3% of people in that database will show those intent signals,” says Bowen.
Before using InsurAware, this agency was doing it all. Postcards, mailers, social media, radio ads, paying for ads in local gathering spaces. Anything to get the word out. But without knowing what stage of the decision-making process the target audience was in.
Let's compare this process to walking into a shoe store:
You’re approached, “May I help you find anything?”
You respond, “No, just looking, thank you.” You know you’re not just looking. You came to buy shoes!
InsurAware finds your clients when they are in this consideration/ready to buy state and organizes them on a dashboard that allows you to send digital marketing materials with one click, straight from the platform.
Essentially, you are made aware that your clients are ready to buy, and now you can recommend the best product for them. AI and Machine learning is needed to accomplish this, but you don’t need to break the bank. In most cases, if you divert the budget away from some of the traditional methods and utilize this, it comes at a wash.
This convergence of AI and humanness allows the agent to not only sell but also recommend based on an individual’s situation.
Amazing, I know – and it’s designed to only get smarter.
Why should you care?
Whether you sell or keep your business you must ask yourself, “How do I ultimately survive?” Because even if you sell, you have a time period where you have to execute to maximize the terms of the agreement or purchase price.
IMOs are uniquely positioned to grab the insights and details different financial professionals have to help your agency execute. You're not going to have access to these things on your own, nor would you want to spend the time researching and investigating at great lengths. But an IMO can do that for you and frankly should.
Customer service, contracts and compensation are all too often the focus of IMOs. Those that continue on this path are ignoring the most important tool that agents need: Marketing.
Marketing has a different meaning today.
And the way that we engage with the customer will continue to change. Look at policy fulfillment. We used to hand deliver insurance policies. Today your policy is emailed to you. This one change enables producers to be more efficient with how they spend their time. Less time on the road means producers are able to perform more customer facing activities.
AI and Machine learning can do the same thing. By addressing the audience that demonstrates intent signals of buying insurance.
All this means we should be looking at how we are getting in front of new people: By tapping into the power of marketing funnels.
A funnel process provides producers with many levers they can use to build meaningful relationships that attract and retain clients for life.
Thankfully, we have technology helping us.
InsurAware builds the funnel, fills it, and markets to it for you. A true one-stop-shop from client enrichment to digital marketing.
Fintech and Insuretech companies all over are using data to better understand consumer behavior, determine where the best opportunity is, and achieve a greater ROI.
Outsourcing the funnel creation process to an organization like InsurAware who makes this their area of expertise is the best way to achieve deeper relationships and exponential growth.
Plus, be sure to check out the Escape Velocity Resource Center. You’ll find so much great content on the 5 forces that are holding your agency back from reaching its full potential.