If you’re an insurance agent or broker, you face new threats to your business daily: right now, the shift towards online and direct insurance sales is increasing competition and making it harder to win new customers. According to a recent EY survey of 530 insurance agents, the emergence of direct-to-consumer and online channels is pushing insurance professionals to embrace new technologies in order to win new business. Furthermore, IDR’s 2018 Insurance Digital Transformation Survey reveals that 95% of agents think digital technology is important to their success–an increase from 58% in 2016.
While agents are increasingly adopting tools like e-signatures, web quoting and customer portals to improve the customer experience, there’s still more to be done. These five digital must-haves keep you in touch with the times and in touch with customers’ needs, so you can connect in the ways that matter:
#1. A BETTER WAY TO PRICE POLICIES AND PROCESS CLAIMS. New technologies like HOVER can generate scaled, fully-measured and highly accurate 3D models of any property all based on ground-level imagery. This is a major innovation that can make pricing a policy or adjusting a claim relatively painless compared to traditional methods like physical inspections, on-site adjuster visits, or even cost-prohibitive drone imagery. Homeowners can now snap eight photos of their home with a smartphone and HOVER does the rest, generating accurate measurements and capturing property details faster than a physical home inspection can (and more accurately than stale aerial imagery or outdated MLS or public data can).
#2. A STREAMLINED SOLUTION FOR NURTURING NEW BUSINESS. To grow your business, you need to reliably generate and nurture new leads. So how do you keep track of all of your prospects, leads and customers? A CRM system helps keep all that information organized in one place so you can act on it. Need to make follow-up sales calls, check in on renewals, or generate more business? A good CRM system can help you see relevant customer info at a glance, nurture leads, and get you closer to making the sale. Looking for a simple but powerful CRM solution? Consider Capsule CRM, Sugar CRM, or Insightly.
#3. A POWERFUL CHANNEL FOR MARKETING YOURSELF AND YOUR SERVICES. If you’re doing a good job nurturing leads and cultivating customer relationships, then you probably also need to stay in touch with several people–all at different points in the sales cycle, and all at once. Marketing automation platforms like MailChimp not only help you streamline communication and automate emails, they can help you create marketing campaigns and extend your reach with social ads. If you’re still communicating with leads and customers one email at a time, it may be worth delegating a lot of that to MailChimp or similar services, like ConstantContact and GetResponse.
#4. AN ONLINE PRESENCE THAT ATTRACTS NEW CLIENTS. If you don’t have a website already, go to Weebly, SquareSpace or Wix and get a simple site up by the end of the day. Because consumers today prefer to do online research before reaching out, a website is a must-have for insurance professionals. Just remember that while your site can be simple, it must be mobile-ready: the majority of online searches now happen on mobile, and you risk losing out on leads if your site isn’t responsive. Next, head over to Google My Business to make sure you appear in map searches when people look for insurance in your area. And finally, set up a profile at TrusedChoice to get exposure to 450,000+ customers who use the site to search for insurance each month.
#5. A SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY THAT WORKS FOR YOU. Many agents are already using platforms like LinkedIn to connect with potential customers or contribute their expertise to group conversations. If you’re active across multiple social platforms, like Facebook and Twitter, the additional exposure can help you generate fresh leads and build up your business. Just be sure to make the most of your time with streamlined tools for managing those accounts. You may want to use HootSuite or Hearsay Social to post to multiple platforms at once and to automate a lot of your social activity.