Tuesday, December 3, 2013
Why Direct Mail Insurance Leads Are Not As Good As Internet Insurance Leads
There is an assumed fact by a majority of insurance agents in the US that direct mail insurance leads are far better than internet insurance leads. When I poll agents they all seem to believe that leads received from reply cards in the mail would be a higher quality. This is not always true and there are several reasons why.
Many times if an insurance agent or agency uses direct mail for their marketing, they are outsourcing this task to a marketing company. I have tried several different marketing companies and each time I kept an open mind. The most important thing you can do when trying a new marketing company, whether online or direct, you must give the campaign a fair chance. In other words, do not doom the campaign before it begins. This being said there are reasons why online insurance leads are just as good (and cheaper to get) as direct mail leads.
Direct mail companies often use proven mail pieces in order to get a decent response. A typical response rate can be anywhere from 1% - 3%. Any company who tells you they can get you more are either not truthful or are using black hat methods of generating these leads. Mail pieces should not be incentivized. Some companies will send out mailers with headlines such as "Fill out the form for a Free Booklet". These leads are NOT good.
I used a company who did this and though I received a good response rate, all of the leads I called where only wanting this booklet, nothing more. In fact, many of them where upset that I was calling.
When you start to do your research on these companies, you will realize that most of them use these types of mailers. Your best bet, if you want to use a certain marketing companies mailing list, is to come up with your own mailer piece. Sometimes if you tell them what you are looking for they can generate a mailer that meets your standards. Make sure to ask about a fee for this service as some will charge you making these mailers (I was charged $100).
If you decide to create your own piece, you will most likely find that your response rate will be low. The leads you do receive will be good, but you will have to mail 2 - 3 times more pieces to get enough leads.
So what can you do to get the same quality of leads in high volumes? Internet insurance leads have gotten a bad name over the last 4 or 5 years as big aggregators are unable to keep track of all the poor quality affiliates. However, there are companies that are starting to rise to the top that will generate quality leads at a fraction of the cost of direct mail leads.
If you think about it, a person fills out a form online just like they would on a reply card in the mail. The people that do this have some interest in what you are offering. If you can find an online insurance lead company that is generating their leads from search engines than you can be sure the person is actually searching for insurance. In fact with today's search engine software, a business can narrow down their target market a lot better than you could by using direct mail.
Most of the time a good lead company will only display their ads to people who are searching for a specific type of insurance. For instance, a person searching for life insurance will see life insurance quote ads from lead companies. Stay away from lead companies who generate their leads from incentive websites and paid survey ads.
It might take some trial and error but you should be able to find an online insurance lead company that can provide you and your agency with better and more affordable leads than direct mail companies (or doing it yourself).
Need some ideas:
(Disclaimer: We do work as affiliate lead generator with a few of the companies that I am recommending.)
Good Online Insurance Lead Companies - InsuranceFiles.com, LeadsToInsure.com, AllWebLeads.com
Stay Away From These Companies - NetQuote (Bankrate), LeadsDirect, Organic Insurance Leads
Try at your own risk - Kramer Direct Mail, InfluenceDirect.com