This guest blog post was written by Megan Pacella, a contributor for TechnologyAdvice.com, with specializations in retail, human resources, B2B marketing, and sales. She has also written for USA Today, Bearings Guide, 10Best Nashville, and other publications.
Due to the large market share of large insurance companies, frequent mergers and acquisitions, and increased competition, the insurance field is in a constant state of flux. In order to grow sales in this ever-shifting climate, it’s vital for insurance sales teams to keep close ties to their existing customers. Customer relationship management (CRM) software helps agents and sales reps to create an organized system for maintaining customer records and improving relationships.
This software is gaining popularity so quickly that CRM leads all enterprise software categories in projected growth, showing a 15.1 percent CAGR from 2012 to 2017. Other studies show remarkable benefits of using CRM software, including an average ROI of $8.71 for every dollar spent.
Most insurance professionals know the benefits of using a CRM. Many are obvious, such as customer retention, analyzing your performance, and tracking client communications. But you can also use CRM capabilities to grow your agency on a deeper, broader scale. Here are four ways to expand your existing business using your CRM software.
- Create and manage a referral program. A CRM can help you create a structured referral program that will give your current customers incentives, such as points, gifts, or discounts, to refer you to other prospects. Once your referral program begins, your CRM will track communications with your clients, including promotional materials sent, interactions with referrers, and more. Your CRM will also let you link contacts, giving you a clear view into the connections between them. A referral program is an efficient, low-cost way to grow your client base, and your CRM will help you keep all the details straight.
- Use your CRM to create a cross-selling strategy. You already know your clients and their needs, and current clients are much more likely to buy additional products or services from you than new prospects. Successful cross-selling requires a strong strategy, and your CRM can help with this. Without a CRM, disparate business processes can provide fragmented or outdated customer data. By accessing real-time customer data via CRM software, sales reps can stay confident when cross-selling or upselling products.
Your CRM will also give you insight into clients’ buying patterns and interests, based on their engagement with your marketing materials and social media posts. This vital information leads to more informed sales pitches and increased sales.
- Automate renewals. Use your CRM to gain a complete overview of your customers’ buying patterns and needs, track their engagement with your company, and set up alerts based on their renewal periods. That way you’ll be know when a customer is due for a new policy or an expansion of their existing services. The best CRM software can even notify you when the renewal period rolls around, giving you an opportunity to touch base with the client and provide the best insurance solution for their situation.
- Simplify your view of customer data. Due to frequent mergers and acquisitions, newly combined organizations have difficulty gaining insight into customer data. Often, this data arrives through multiple platforms, giving agents and sales reps little information about customer communications and expectations.
A CRM program gathers this data into one place and gives agents a unified view of customer records. This reduces customer frustration, because they are speaking to representatives who understand their relationship with the insurance company. It also cuts down on miscommunication within the sales department. Over time, this unified data view can improve customer satisfaction and increases the likelihood of upselling, cross-selling, referrals, and — most importantly — your customers enjoying a long-time relationship with your company.
These are just a few ways you can use CRM software to grow your existing business. Has your CRM helped increase sales or bring in new clients?
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