How to Identify & Convert the Low-Hanging Fruit in Your Book of Business

How to Identify & Convert the Low-Hanging Fruit in Your Book of Business

Two measures of your success as an insurance agent are the amount of clients you keep (retention) and the number prospects you bring on (conversion). For many agents and agencies, growing is the goal; but it doesn’t always have to be a valiant effort of bringing on someone new. Look to your current book of business to see where your opportunities lie.

Identifying the opportunities

To be able to go after the low hanging fruit in your book of business, you need to know who they are. There are three distinct groups you should be specifically targeting:

  • Cross-Sells
  • Turning-26 Crowd
  • Turning-65 Crowd

Cross-Sells

Cross-selling is one of the most powerful ways you can build your book of business. Why? Because it’s selling to the clients you already have.

Did you know?

Selling to an existing client is actually easier and more cost-effective since you’re at least 40% more likely to convert them than a new prospect.

There are two ways to check for cross-sell opportunities in your book of business. The first way would be to go through and complete a client needs assessment to determine where the gaps are in your client’s coverage.

A needs assessment is a series of questions you ask your client to see what coverages they do and do not have. From there, you’ll be able to discuss what their needs are and if they are fully covering those needs or not.

The benefit of a client needs assessment is that your client already has all of their cards on the table and will be more understanding of why they would need the additional coverage. Say, for example, you’re talking with a client who is aging and their eyesight is weakening. When you perform their needs assessment and ask “Do you have vision insurance?” and they say no, you have the perfect opportunity to make the sale.

It’s about getting your clients on the same page as their needs. Some will be trickier than others, but the assessment will at least help put the reality of the situation in front of their eyes to help convince them of the necessity of the coverages they’re lacking.

You may be saying, “Well, I already know what my clients need, they’re my clients after all!” And that’s true, but it’s easy to let coverages slip through the cracks or assume they’re already covered. It doesn’t hurt to try, and your clients will thank you for being so concerned and thorough. Worst that’ll happen is they’ll say “no thanks.” Best case? You’ll write them an additional policy or two!

Consider this: Michael Sams with Sams/Hockaday & Associates, Inc. started using a client needs assessment and his book grew exponentially. Check it out how he used it in this video:

YouTube

Now, the needs assessment is something you should do with your clients, but it’s not necessarily the most efficient way to identify the cross-sell opportunities in your book of business.

Identifying Them in AgencyBloc

The second, and more savvy approach, is to run a report. This requires you to have your book of business in an organized, centralized place like an agency management system (AMS). Doing this within Excel Spreadsheets or attempting to go through paper files will require significantly more time and effort.

Think of it this way: without an AMS, you will be going through each spreadsheet you have and manually highlighting your cross-sell opportunities. This could take hours to days depending on the size of your book of business. Then, once you’re finished, you’ll have to do it all over again a couple of months down the road.

Instead, with an AMS, you can run a simple report. AgencyBloc, an AMS built specifically for the life and health insurance industry, makes running this report simple.

Cross-Sell Report in AgencyBloc

Cross-Sell Report in AgencyBloc

It takes but seconds of your time and gives you a wealth of knowledge. PLUS, if you have AgencyBloc, you can save this report to run over and over every time you need it.

Here are some of the filters you can apply to get a more complete scope of who you can contact for cross-selling opportunities:

  • They have life insurance with you but don’t have health insurance
  • They have health insurance with you but don’t have life insurance
  • They are a group health insurance client but don’t have add-ons like dental and vision
  • They have life insurance with you but don’t have any annuities
  • They have life insurance with you but don’t have short-term disability coverage

Turning-26 Crowd

Likely this crowd is comprised of the children or grandchildren of your current clients. These individuals provide you with an excellent opportunity for conversion because they already have a sense of trust built with you because of their family connection. Your best options would be those that are independent workers, freelancers, those without full-time positions, and those who work for companies that don’t offer benefits.

Use your AMS to keep track of these kids. It’s important that they know who you are in order for them to want to trust you and even consider you down the road. In AgencyBloc, you can use the notes section to follow them throughout all their major life events. Send them congrats cards when they get the lead in the school play, or make a touchdown, or their art is put on display at the local museum.

Pro Tip

AgencyBloc integrates with Rocket Referrals who you can use to send “handwritten” cards to your clients and their relations which can save you time, money, and hand cramps.

One of the important notes to keep is their birthday. Send them a handwritten card every year on their birthday to stand out and keep your name fresh in their head. As they get older, their minds will get clogged with all the worries, stress, and realities that come with adulthood. Make sure you stay on top of all that by keeping your relationship relevant and current.

Why a handwritten card? Well, it’s more personal for one, and it’ll stick out in their mind. Plus, as the world becomes increasingly digital, snail mail becomes more precious. Let’s face it; it’s very unlikely that we’ll ever do away with mail.

Take into account they’re just getting out of college or they could be in their masters/doctorates, they’re just getting into the professional world, and they may not actually have a professional job yet. They may still be finishing up internships, which, unfortunately, some aren’t paid. The possibilities are endless for this group on how much they make, how many jobs they have, how “thrifty” they are, and what their living situation is (live with 5 roommates, mom and dad, significant other, etc.)

One key thing to keep in mind with this group is to not stereotype them. They don’t appreciate being made fun of or made to look a fool because of the overarching perception of their age. Don’t assume they’re lazy. Don’t assume they are technology-obsessed. Don’t assume they’re unreliable.

Many of them want to learn, even if they don’t know how to communicate that. Sit down and have an adult conversation with them. Let them ask you all of their “stupid questions”, because, in the end, they’ll trust you more and feel more comfortable with you. This can lead to improved retention rates, likelihood of referrals, and increase your opportunity for cross-selling them in the future.

Ask them how much they’re comfortable spending and start there. Let the conversation build and discuss how they can or cannot reach the value they want with that dollar amount and why.

I guarantee it—they’ll appreciate it. Also, keep in mind they may not know what to ask. They’ll probably have a question by the time they get to their car. So make sure you give them your card so they can email you or call you after your initial meeting.

Taking your time and practicing patience will go a long way with this crowd, and it will go a long way for improving your chances of conversion and eventual retention.

Identifying Them in AgencyBloc

Identify possible candidates by tracking the children of your clients via relationships. Relationship tracking allows you to create contact profiles for individuals regardless if they’re your actual clients or prospects. This way, you can keep track of those kids until they reach the age where they would need you.

Then, when they are closing in on 26, you’ll be prepared and get to them first. With insurance, the saying “the early bird gets the worm” is even more true with 50% of sales going to the first agent the person talks to. Be that early bird and get that worm.

So how do you track them and ensure you’re the first to contact them? Let’s discuss how you would do so with AgencyBloc. It’s crucial to note, AgencyBloc is an AMS and not all AMSs are built the same. You’ll have to check with your provider to find the best ways to track and manage your turning-26 clients. To learn more about doing so in AgencyBloc, sign up for a personalized one-on-one demos with our industry experts.

With AgencyBloc, you can use Automated Workflows. Set up a workflow in AgencyBloc to alert you to when your individuals are nearing their 26th birthday. It may be beneficial to set up 6-months out to ensure you have plenty of time to discuss the upcoming changes and get them on their own policy. You can have it alert you and the individual in many different ways:

  • Send you an email
  • Create an activity for you that’ll be listed on your “to-dos”
  • Send an email to the individual
  • All of the above

You can set these alerts to launch on any given time-table—whatever fits your schedule and your style. You can start a year out, more, or less. You can set it to launch multiple times. Just set it up once and it’ll replicate every time you have an individual in your book getting close to 26.

Turning 26 Automated Workflow in AgencyBloc

Turning 26 Automated Workflow in AgencyBloc

If you decide to have an email sent to your client’s relation (like their child), as well, here is an example of what it could say:

Dear [Individual’s Name],

I’m your parent’s/grandparent’s [insert type of insurance] agent. Your mom/dad/grandma/grandpa and I were talking the other day and they mentioned you had some questions about insurance.  Let’s sit down and talk about your options so you can relax and enjoy your upcoming birthday. Insurance doesn’t have to be difficult; I’m here to help you through the whole transition.

Email me at [insert email address] or give me a call at [enter phone number] to find a time that works best for you.

All the best,

[Your Name]

Keep in mind, if you’re a life insurance agent, this is the perfect group to contact (they are part of the most underinsured generation). You can run the same report, and then just ask them if they have life insurance. You may even want to contact them earlier than 26—maybe even 18. Tracking them via relationships in AgencyBloc will help you keep tabs on these potential clients so you can strike when the time comes.

More than likely, they won’t see the value at first. But, as you and I both know, life insurance is very important. We’ve put together some resources that can help you show your prospects why they need life insurance:

Turning-65 Crowd

You can use a lot of the tactics we discussed in the previous section with these individuals as well. Like the turning-26 crowd, the turning-65’ers will need a little extra help. They’re entering new territory and, as many of them are very fiscally conservative, they’ll be wary of lofty expenditures.

Sit them down and go through the changes with them thoroughly. Discuss what they need to expect, where they’ll see the changes first, and what their steps should be throughout the process. They’ll appreciate your attention to detail and dedication to helping them find the best coverage.

This is another great opportunity for you to fill out a needs assessment to determine how much coverage they’ll need and where.

If you’re new to the senior market game or are looking to improve, check out the webinar we hosted with Jason Ferguson from New Horizons Insurance Marketing. The webinar, Succeeding as a Senior Marketing Insurance Agent, will give you all of the insider information on how to be a successful and prosperous senior market insurance agent.

Similar to the turning-26’ers, the turning-65 crowd will be filled with a variety of people. Some will still be working full-time, others will be retired but still working part-time gigs, and some will be retired and loving every moment of the relaxation. You’ll have people of all health levels, ability levels, mental levels, and emotional levels. You’ll have some that are the primary caregiver to an ill partner, have kids or grandkids living at home, or are widows/widowers.

Although many are getting a grasp on technology, there is still a large portion who don’t absolutely love tech stuff and will be turned off by it. Additionally, ensure your paperwork, fliers, mailers, and other marketing pieces are larger print and don’t have too much going on. As you age, your ability to discern color variations becomes limited and reading small text can be quite frustrating.

Just keep in mind these potential clients are just as capable. Many are still young at heart and very active and will react negatively to you talking down to them or making them look feeble.

Identifying Them in AgencyBloc

Just like with your turning-26 crowd, stay in touch with your turning-65’ers by setting up a workflow. Just indicate the age you’re looking for and set the actions (emails, tasks, etc.) From there, AgencyBloc will alert you when those clients are nearing 65.

Turning 65 Automated Workflow in AgencyBloc

Turning 65 Automated Workflow in AgencyBloc

If you choose the route of sending them an email, here is something you could say:

Dear [Client’s Name],

I know you’re turning 65 soon and that means some changes are going to happen. Let’s sit down and talk about your options and get a game plan together for when your birthday comes.

Email me at [insert email address] or give me a call at [enter phone number] to find a time that works best for you.

All the best,

[Your Name]

For more ideas on identifying potential leads for your 65+ clientele, check out this guest blog from Jason Ferguson:

They Really Aren’t That Different

Although the age gap is significant, there aren’t too many differences between the turning-26 kids and the turning-65 adults. They both are nervous about the changes coming and aren’t quite sure what to expect. Both seek value and are willing to spend more if they find the value is worth it. Both need extra time, patience, and care to help them decide which plan is best for them.

These three areas could prove to be extremely valuable for you. Taking the time and analyzing your book of business to see where your clients and prospects are could be the one trick you pull that puts you out on top this year.

However, to do so, you need to have your book of business in an orderly, clean fashion that's easy to analyze and quick to report on. Using a generic CRM, Excel spreadsheets, or paper files likely won’t help you capitalize on the possible gains in your book of business. Although they have many benefits (cost, capability, etc.), for growing insurance agencies, they sometimes won’t cut the cake due to lack of specificity and effectiveness.

If you’re finding this to be true with your current system, here are some resources you may find helpful in starting your search for something new:

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Allison Babberl

By Allison Babberl on January 31, 2018 in Lead Generation

Allison is the Marketing Content Specialist at AgencyBloc. She creates educational content and designs videos to promote AgencyBloc's resources to help you organize, automate, and grow your insurance agency. Favorite quote: “Conversation is the bedrock of relationships. Without it, our relationships are devoid of substance.” -Maribeth Kuzmeski  More articles

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