Every agency and agent is trying to get the most qualified leads possible, despite the current market conditions and soft market. There’s always a compromise between the current flow of leads for insurance agencies and long-term marketing plans, branding, and awareness campaigns for the future. Let’s look at some web marketing options and talk about the time it takes to generate leads for agents. These are the recommended order for an insurance agency’s web marketing campaign.
Insurance Agency Website:
This is the most important task of any agent or agency. Your website is the main street facade of your agency. It’s the first thing that every client and prospect will see. It doesn’t matter how many leads you have, it is important that your website is professional and up-to-date. You wouldn’t want to go into a store that has peeling paint, cracked windows, faded signs, and general neglect. A website can be revived from top to bottom in just 30 days. Once it is done, a compelling website will begin to reap the rewards.
Insurance Agency Search Engine Optimization. (SEO)
We now need to concentrate on SEO. Although it is possible to argue that most of the on-page optimization was done if your website had been redesigned, many agencies find that SEO may be a difficult topic for web designers. It’s important to make sure your agency’s SEO is at its best. Both on-page and off-page optimization are crucial to your agency’s success. In as little as 30-60 days, insurance agency SEO projects can get your agency to Google page one. This will result in an improvement in web traffic and lead generation.
Blogging can be a great way for agencies to improve their SEO, increase traffic to their websites and showcase their expertise. It is quick, simple, and most importantly, fun. Blog entries don’t have to be long. Sometimes, just two or three sentences is enough. You can also outsource blogging to an insurance agency or skilled copywriter. Many blog topics can be turned into articles and published in online magazines. Blogs can be integrated in social media marketing programs. Lead generation can also be tracked using website analytics programs (including Google Analytics, which is a free option). Blogs can improve lead flow in as little 60 days if they are done right and consistently.
Insurance agencies have another avenue to increase website traffic and inbound inquiries, as well as establishing a positive online presence. Electronic publishing is more effective than bulk web leads purchases or social media marketing to bring in profile prospects to an agency’s website. Your area of expertise should be the focus of your articles. Perhaps your agency is skilled in marine insurance, compliance, workers’ compensation, or other areas. These articles will show your expertise and drive traffic to the website. Leads can be generated electronically in as little as 30 days. Articles are usually published within one week after submission.
Social Media Marketing (Facebook. LinkedIn. Twitter. YouTube. Flickr.
Social media marketing can be fun, engaging and empowering. Agents and agencies should be present on the most popular social networks. They should also join the relevant prospect groups on LinkedIn. Social media integration (linking your blog with Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn) improves the speed and effectiveness of your content. YouTube and other social media platforms offer many benefits for marketing via video. Video also makes agencies websites more attractive and more “sticky”. Social media marketing takes time to generate leads. It takes at least three to four months for social media marketing to produce results. Your return on investment can be faster if you combine social media marketing and some of the other tools for lead generation mentioned here.
Insurance Agency eMarketing
Email blasts that are used to send out insurance offers will not work for agencies. However, agencies that use eMarketing to send out quality white papers, webinar series, and newsletters can find it a very effective tool for lead generation in a soft market. Although campaigns can be very effective, it takes time to plan and execute a successful eMarketing strategy and seminar strategy. An agency should aim for a 90-day cycle.
Insurance Agency Web Seminars
When combined with a professional eMarketing campaign, web seminars can be one the most powerful and long-lasting lead generation tools for agencies in a hard or soft insurance market. When done properly, web seminar series can almost eliminate cold calling and add qualified leads to an agency’s pipeline. It can take up to six months for a webinar series to become popular and loyal. However, once an agency has established credibility, their webinar series can continue to attract impressive numbers of prospects. It takes three to six months for agencies to create a web seminar program that is effective.
Pay Per Klick (Google PPC Campaigns).
Insurance agencies can increase their website traffic and generate leads by using Pay Per Click (PPC). Organic SEO is more effective because there are no ongoing click-based fees. For specific agency niches such as personal lines, commercial insurance, and benefits insurance, however, there are additional fees. A Pay Per Click campaign can provide a boost in lead generation for insurance agencies. This can also be used in Pay Per Impression and Pay Per Inclusion. Important note: Keyword clicks can be costly, with some ads costing $5 to $15 per click.
Many companies drive insurance consumer traffic to their websites. They then analyze and bundle leads and sell these to agents in their target areas. These companies may drive life insurance prospects onto their websites. They collect information and then sell the prospects to agents or agencies on a per-lead basis. Although this can help to increase activity in an insurance agency’s pipeline, it is not ideal. These leads are often sold to multiple brokers and agents, which results in many agents trying to sell the same prospect to different agents. Although bulk leads can be used to drive activity into an agency’s pipeline in a matter of days, the downside is that they are free and your agency will not be the only one calling on the same leads.
These web-centric activities can drive leads to agencies, even in difficult soft markets like the one we are currently experiencing. Your agency should be able to focus on the areas you are skilled in. You could ask your support staff to help with electronic publishing and blogging. You may also have a principal who wants to be a strong social media presence. If you don’t have the resources or expertise to do these tasks, you can hire an insurance agency that is competent.