It’s universal: existing customers are an excellent source for future sales. You don’t have to spend time, money or effort to find them, establish a relationship or onboard them as clients—that work is already done. All you have to do is retain them as customers in order to sell them more insurance.
This logical deduction is backed up by statistics. According to management consultants Bain & Company, a 5% increase in customer retention can produce a 25% increase in profit. And 90% of customers surveyed by HubSpot say they are likely to purchase more than once from the same vendor.
The data shows that it’s well worth thinking about how you can retain your insurance customers. Here are three ways to do so:
1. Provide Great Customer Service
According to more research done by HubSpot, 93% of customers surveyed reported that they would be likely to make repeat purchases from companies that offer excellent customer service. That sounds like great news! However, HubSpot also reports that 80% said they had stopped doing business with a company because of a poor customer service experience.
So one bad customer service experience can turn off a customer who otherwise was very likely to stick around. Uh oh.
This is why it pays to make sure your customer service is a well-oiled machine. From answering phones promptly during business hours to tracking a client’s insurance claim in order to keep them updated on its progress, there are a lot of small actions you can take that will send the message that your customer is important to you. Train your staff well and make sure they understand the correlation between customer service, retention rates, and your bottom line.
2. Solve Customer Problems
In order to solve a customer’s problem, you need to know what it is. Rather than assuming, ask upfront with an open-ended statement like this: “Tell me what your biggest concern is related to insurance.”
For some, it might be that they have a tight budget. In this case, you’ll know to get a variety of quotes, look for policies where they can drop some of the bells and whistles, then lay out all of their options clearly for them to make the best decision.
Another client might have a unique insurance need like coverage on a valuable stamp collection or an expensive fine-art piece. You may not represent a company that insures items like these, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find one that does. Go out of your way to learn about how these items are insured and which companies might be a good fit, then offer that information to your client along with your quotes for all of the other items you are able to insure. If you lay the situation out the right way, you can still earn most of their business and become their go-to insurance expert, even if some of their specific belongings are insured elsewhere.
3. Stay in Touch
Many insurance policies are based on an annual term, but a year is a long time between contacts when you want to stay top-of-mind as your customers’ go-to insurance source.
You don’t have to wait for a renewal to stay in touch. Create a calendar of ways to reach out on a monthly or bimonthly basis. It could look something like this:
Month One: Ask for feedback (Here’s a three-question survey: How was your experience with us? What could we do better? What did we do well?)
Month Three: Demonstrate appreciation (Thanks for purchasing! Here’s a $10 gift card for a coffee shop.)
Month Four: Holiday well-wishes
Month Six: Ask for referrals (We are a small business and value your support. Please share this contact information with your friends and family…)
If you have a local tradition (the start of your town’s college football season, an event like Mardi Gras, a seasonal festival, the opening of the local ice-skating rink) find a way to tie into that. Or think about seasonal reasons to reach out, like winter storm preparation tips. Spend an hour creating your contact calendar and schedule when and how those contacts will be made. Revisit this calendar a year later to update it with new ideas.
With regular outreach, excellent customer service and great problem solving, you have now given your insurance customers three great reasons to continue as your customer. And now you’ve got more chances to upsell and cross-sell other insurance products to this audience, too. This is how to build your book and grow a successful insurance agency.
At Hometown Quotes, helping insurance agents find customers is our forte. Call us at 800.820.2981 or visit us at hometownquotes.com to sign up to receive pre-qualified leads from a pool of consumers who are actively shopping for insurance.