Insurance Leads Blog

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

How to Make Online Insurance Leads "Interested"



If you are buying or have bought online insurance leads, you will know that occasionally you will get people who answer the phone saying they are not interested. This phrase, "I am not interested", can be the excuse that causes you to lose out on hundreds of dollars worth of sales. There are ways to turn those people into future clients with a few easy maneuvers.

A hand full of insurance lead companies will allow you to return a lead if the prospect was truly never interested in an insurance quote or information. I have always found this is hard to prove. It has been my experience that a majority of the time this refund reason is turned down.

What you DO NOT want to do is accept this excuse from prospects just to get additional lead credit from the lead gen company. This can be a bad habit and I will be the first to admit that it has happened to me in the past. I found myself returning around 80 percent of the leads I bought because people were telling me they were never interested

You should know that most of the time this is a bogus excuse by the prospect. Sure, there are times were they are telling the truth, but more times than not they are just telling you this so you will stop calling. Make a point to respond to them in a positive way when they say they are not interested.

What you should do

When a person says they are not interested in a quote, do not argue with them about it. Some agents might tell you to ask them if they filled out a quote online forcing the client to admit to it. This will only cause the prospect to feel backed into a corner and you cannot make a sale that way. Instead, just say something like "Oh, I am sorry about that. That is my mistake. I will not take up anymore of you time." You might be asking yourself "How does this help me make the sale?"

This shows the client that you are not pushy. In a few days follow up with them in an email (if you have their email address). Let them know that you were sorry for calling them unwarranted, but that if they happen to need insurance information you would be happy to help.

If the prospect was lying and they actually were looking for insurance quotes they might reply with questions. Even if they do not reply to the email continue to follow up a month later with a direct mail piece. A typed letter is perfect for this instance. Make it personal so that it does not look like a mass mailing.

After you send out the direct mail letter wait a few days and then call them one more time. At this point, you will know if they are interested or not.

To get past the "I am not interested" people you must be persistent but no pushy and you must be consistent with your follow up of each lead that gives you this excuse. Do not arm wrestle them on the phone about whether they did or didn't fill out the form. This will do not god. I hope you can take this approach and apply it to your own business.

Monday, November 25, 2013

How Insurance Agents Can Generate Their Own Organic Leads



As a local insurance agent you have one big marketing advantage over the rest of the insurance lead companies and corporate insurance companies. This key advantage is being able to sign your business up for Google Places.

Google Places is a free service offered by, you guessed it, Google to help small business get noticed online. Think of it like a yellow pages for Google Search. This works for getting visitors to your quote page, no matter what type of insurance you are selling!

Sometimes if your business has the right key words associated with it, such as insurance or coverage you could rank on the first page of google when someone types in that search along with your city or town's name. For instance, if I were to search Google for in "insurance in Chicago" and your insurance agency's name is "Insurance of Chicago" you could pop up as one of the first few listings.

Most insurance agents know if you can rank high on Google you can see some traffic to your site. The more traffic you get the more leads you generate yourself. Remember, "Places" is free to sign up for. It is different than Google Adwords which are the ads on the right and very top of the Google Search screen. You must pay to be listed on Google Adwords.

To sign up for Google Places simply go to http://www.google.com/business/placesforbusiness/. On this page you will sign your business up to be listed on Google Places and Google Maps. Maps will help your business get noticed when someone is looking for you on the map. It is important when registering to enter a business name that will be keyword friendly. Once you have completed the online sign up you will be mailed a PIN in the mail. This is a unique PIN to your business and allows you to complete the registration process. Once you have the PIN, go to the screen it directs you to and enter it.

It sometimes takes a few weeks, possibly months, for you to start appearing in Google searches. It is still important to keep fresh, up-to-date, information on your site as Google crawls these regularly. Google Places will help you get noticed locally and for most agents that is all they need to start generating organic insurance leads.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Exclusive Auto, Home and Life Insurance Leads for Shared Prices

It has been debated by many agents and even by us on our blogs. What type of lead is better, Exclusive or Shared? I will not get into that now, but what I will tell you my have you second guessing what type of lead you buy.
We help leadstoinsure.com generate leads as well as purchase media for data collecting. We are a fairly new company and did not know what the cost of generating a lead would be. We did our own testing and found that prices could and should be a lot lower for both exclusive and shared insurance leads.
When we researched other companies before launching, we found that they were charging anywhere from $5-$7 dollars for a shared auto insurance lead and $15-$25 for an exclusive lead. We took this price at their word. When we started generating leads we realized it should not be this expensive.
In fact, leads could be sold for half the price they are typically being sold at and still make a good profit. At that point our business model changed. LeadsToInsure is currently redoing their platform to meet these price standards. Insurance agents will no be able to buy exclusive insurance leads at shared prices. Now, go rethink your marketing plan.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Can an Agent Make a Living With Online Insurance Leads?



So a questions we get from time to time is about whether there are agents that really make a living with online insurance leads. The short answer is yes, but there is a little more to it than that. First of all, I am not recommending that agents go out and start buying thousands of dollars worth of internet insurance leads before having a plan in place and testing ways in which to use them.

We work with many agents who use online insurance leads for their sole form of marketing. These agents have found it more cost effective than any other type of marketing. They see the biggest ROI by doing this. This does not mean every agent should do this. Some of you might be better at making sales using other marketing techniques. However, an agent could make a good living working insurance leads from the web.

How do they do it?

It is not as hard as it sounds. You must have a good plan in place and keep testing it to make sure it is working properly. The key is to not let any leads fall thru the cracks. You must be diligent in working the leads. You cannot get lazy. Leads must be called immediately in case the prospect is ready to do business right then. If it is shared leads you are dealing with, you call them quickly to also make sure one of first agents to make contact. Once on the phone you can determine if you prospect is ready to do business or if you need to follow up with them at a later date. There will also be leads that you need to cut off or "Fire". This is important to do since they can waste your time.

Make sure you work with a company that has good volume. Working online insurance leads is a numbers game, you need to have enough prospects in the funnel to be successful.

Keep an archive of all leads that were not ready to do business right away. Use drip marketing techniques on this list. Email, direct marketing, and follow up phone calls work the best in this case.

Do not be afraid to push the button when it comes to asking the client to do business with you. Let them know how it works. Do not be too aggressive, but let them know how quickly you can help them. People using the internet to find insurance are looking for quick information.

Use email to reach out to the prospects initially, as well as call them. Lots of times the lead is expecting an email or instant quote. This is another way to make first contact with them since most will be on their computer and have their email hooked up to software like Microsoft Outlook or Apple's Mail.

It might not seem like it, but there ARE agents who are making a living buying these online insurance leads. Remember, keep the volume up so you have enough prospects to work with and keep at them. Do not let any lead slip thru the cracks. Do this and you will be on your way. See our leads, which are good quality and not oversold at leadstoinsure.com

Friday, November 22, 2013

Best Life Insurance Online Ads for Agents



As some of you know, we work with several companies on generating life insurance leads. We have had really good campaign and some bad ones as well. We have also seen other companies internet advertisements and know which ones are probably working and which ones are a money trap.

The key with ads is to get more than just clicks on of them. The verbage in the ad must correlate with corresponding landing page. For instance you do not want to have a text ad that says get $20 life insurance and the landing page say $25 insurance. The prospect will think you are trying to bait and switch them or you are not updating your site. This definitely does not make you look professional.

So what kinds of ads work best for getting people interested in life insurance. First, you need to come up with a niche to market too. Example - We have an agent who sells life insurance to people with diabetes. He is an independent agent and knows the carriers that work best. For his case, an ad that says Diabetic Life Insurance or Life Insurance for People with Diabetes would be ideal.

You must also have a hook in you ads. Using the example of the agent who markets to diabetics. His headline might say Diabetic Life Insurance, but his sub-text might read, "We specialize in finding affordable life insurance for people with diabetes." This gets the prospect interested, especially if they are truly looking for life insurance.

It might not be wise to advertise on sites that display your ads on surveys or other incentivized sites. This usually leads to poor quality. Display and text ads on search engines are acceptable. Even 2nd tier search engines are ok considering the visitors are searching for life insurance.

Here is a Google Text Ad used by the agent we mentioned earlier:

Diabetic Life Insurance
We specialize in finding 
affordable insurance for diabetics!
http://****.com

Like most marketing methods you will need to plan on budgeting some dollars for testing different ads since you might not get it right on the first couple of attempts. This can work for other types insurance as well. 

Remember, make you ad geared toward your target market or niche, provide the web visitor with a hook, and make sure your landing page matches your ad. If you do this you will see better ROI.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Will Insurance Leads Be Going Up In Price?



This is a question that I have been getting of late. Will insurance leads, as a whole, start to go up in price. In my opinion, this depends on several factors. First factor is what types of insurance leads you are buying. Second is are you buying exclusive, shared, or aged leads.

I will start to answer this question by telling you that direct mail prices will almost certainly be going up and already are. The US Mail is in financial trouble and they are doing everything they can to stay afloat including raising prices on stamps and shipping. If your primary way of marketing is thru the mail then you might be spending more for the same results.

That being said internet leads have started to come down from their highs a few years ago. With the merger of some of the top lead aggregators in the business, lead quality started to suffer causing agents to start jumping ship. These companies have now started lowering their prices  to get the agents back. Shared leads are especially seeing lower prices. Exclusive internet leads are harder to come by therefor prices have remained stagnant for this sector.

I do not forsee prices going down anymore than they already are, but I do not see them going up anytime soon either. There are some new players to the industry who are charging a little more for their exclusive life and auto leads, but this is not the norm. Home insurance leads seem to be the big craze right now with X dates becoming a big part of some lead companies portfolio.

Leads always tend to be on sale during the holidays due to a lack of agent traffic. Agents should take this opportunity to buy leads at sale prices. Not all companies do this, but some offer discounted rates or bigger sign up bonuses from November to January.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Endless Free Insurance Leads



The Endless Free Insurance lead system on LeadsToInsure.com is a new payment method that helps insurance agents get more bang for their buck. Many lead companies offer agents deep discounts or free leads for signing up, but that is typically just a one time offer and then the agents are on the hook to buy a certain number of additional leads.

LeadsToInsure.com provides agents with two options to pay for leads. They can pay as they go or use the Endless Free Lead System and receive a bonus each time they add money to their account. This allows the agent to continue getting free leads as long as they continue using the service.

Bonuses paid are based on the dollar amount the agent puts into the account. For instance, if an agent started an account with $100 and the bonus was 10%, the bonus dollar amount would be $10 making the total account balance of +$110. 

Let's say the agent started buying leads and that balance dropped to +$50. If the agent decided to put another $100 into the account they would receive another $10 bonus. Any and every time an agent adds money to an already positive account, the bonus is applied. However, if the agent has a negative balance on the account the bonus does not apply until it begins reaching positive.

Over the long run this can save agents hundreds of dollars. It is basically like getting free marketing dollars and we all know marketing funds can be hard to come by sometimes. If you are tired of getting sucked in by the big free up-front lead gimmick then try LeadsToInsure.com

Leads To Insure Introduction

Check out our new intro video for the website. Updates coming soon!!



Sunday, November 17, 2013

What Search Engine Produces the Best Insurance Leads?

Many agents who purchase insurance leads do not know exactly where the leads come from. Depending on the insurance lead generator or aggregator you use the leads could come from several different sources. Email, SEO, search engine ads, 2nd tier ads, and auto dialers are all examples of where many insurance leads are generated. We all know organic leads are the best, but these are few and far between. Many of the top insurance companies (StateFarm, Allstate, Progressive) take up the top 10 spots on Google's natural search engine rank and not many people get past the first page when doing a search or something. So how do smaller companies compete? Search engine ads allow lead generators to compete for leads with the big boys, but what search engine ad program performs the best when it comes to insurance leads?



Google is the top dog when it comes to search engine ads. Their program is called Adwords and this is what many of the top lead aggregators use. Adwords allows advertisers to narrow down their search traffic by keywords and geographics. There are also several ways in which to advertise with Google. Display ads, text ads, video ads, and now mobile ads. Text ads have seem to be the way in which lead generators get best response. These ads pop up on the right side and very top of the page after you have searched for keywords on Google. The visitor clicks on the ad which usually goes to a landing page where the lead generator attempts to collect data to create the lead.

The same process is used on Bing, Microsoft's search engine. Bing Ads, allow the advertiser to accomplish the same goals as Google Adwords. However, Bing is not used by as many people so lead generators primarily advertising on Bing might not produce a high volume of leads. This is ok considering the quality is basically the same as those leads generated on Google.

What many insurance agents do not realize is that companies advertising on Bing are also advertising on Yahoo, Ask.com, MSN, and a few other search engines. They are all owned by Bing. Once again, this should not affect the quality of the lead considering these are all legitimate websites.

The least know search engines out there also have advertising programs and many of the lead aggregators use these as well. However, they typically do not tell their agents if they use these search engines because they want to make the agent think they only use the top search engines. These 2nd tier search engines are just as good as Google or Bing. The difference is that most 2nd tier search engines use a network of websites to get the ads seen.

The answer to the original question "What Search Engine Produces the Best Insurance Leads?" is each search engine produces quality leads. When people are activelly searching for insurance and they click on an ad to get a quote they are most likely really wanting insurance information.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

How To Talk To Your Online Insurance Prospects

Online insurance leads can be really great or they can be really bad. That is the give and take with this marketing system. However, some agents could be making more sales if they simply knew how to talk to the propspect on the phone.
When you call a prospect that you received as a real-time online insurance lead there are certain ways to converse that will help you make a sale. No one person is the same so you must be flexible during the conersation. However, these tips will prepare you for speaking with people looking for insurance information online.
First, when you receive the real-time lead call the person right away. Sometimes they are wanting a quick quote and the first agent to reach them might make a sale. If they are not ready, that is ok. Just put them into your insurance lead archive to contact in the future.    
Start the conversatoin off with a direct statement like, "I saw you were looking for insurance on the web and I am the agent to help you." It is all about weeding out the leads not really interested. They should tell you right away if they are truelly interested. Watch for key phrases such as "I was just looking" or "I just filled out a few forms online". If they say this, politely end the phone call. If they are wanting a quote or are interested in buying insurance, they will say things like "I was looking for insurance for..." or "What is the price of...". 
Guide the person in the direction you want. DO NOT give them a quote and then hang up. Find out why they are looking for insurance. Lots of times they will give away their selling point right there. They might say "Our premiums just went up and we are looking for better rates." This is your cue that the contacts are driven by the lowest premium. Taylor your sales pitch accordingly and you could see an increase in sales.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Step by Step Instructions on How to Profit from Insurance Leads


These steps refer to how to profit from real-time online insurance leads. These are the guidelines that have worked for many of our agents.
1. Find a good insurance lead company. (must be: transparent, good price, not oversold, return policy) Do test runs if need be.
2. Purchase leads. To get going we suggest buying leads for three months and setting your max leads per day at 2. This will assure you in getting enough leads to be able to use them in other areas of marketing. If this works for you, you can always increase the volume.
3. Call each lead as soon as it comes in. This can be tedious, but it must be done. Hire an assistant to help make calls if you cannot be in the office or route your emails to your smart phone so you can get the lead in real-time. Some people will not be interested right away, but others will.
4. Archive all leads that you receive. Whether on your lead management system or in a physical file, be sure to keep track of all your leads. You will need to access this data for later steps.
5. Set up an email campaign for all leads. Even if you did business with a prospect, keep their name on your email directory. Some lead management systems come with an email service, but you can always use a company like Constant Contact or Mail Chimp. Send out an email blast once or twice a month with a product offer or newsletter.
6. Set up a direct mail campaign (optional). This is not required since it can get expensive, but if you already send out direct mail you should add your online insurance leads to your list.
7. Call each prospect once a month. Wait until the lead is 30-60 days old to begin reaching out.

Is It Worth Buying A Cold Call List?

Cold call lists can be a good investment for an insurance broker, however there are many fly-by-night companies on the web selling poor data. It is up to the agent to make sure the company is legitimate. Once it is confirmed that the company is reputable you can start to determine if it is worth your money (and time) to purchase these types of lists.
A cold call list is not the same as a fresh insurance lead or an aged insurance lead. Many times agents buy the list thinking the prospects are interested in insurance. Although cold call lists can be targeted, they are not real time or aged insurance leads. 
Cold call lists are prospects that an agent can call on with the attempt of earning their business. The list should be targeted to fit the market the agent is trying to sell to. For instance, if you are a senior life agent, you may buy a list of people over the age of 50 who are married and own a home. This will not assure you that the list is full of people interested in insurance, but it will give you a chance to solicit to people in your target market. 
Transparency is a factor to consider when buying a cold call list. Make sure you confirm with the list company that the phone numbers are scrubbed using the Do-Not-Call List Database. You could incur fines and penalties if you call a person in this database and they complain to officials.
The price of the list is important, but do not get hung up on it. A higher list cost does not always mean it is of better quality. It might take some trial and error to uncover a good list company. Ask the company if they have a "trial" list so that you can see if the quality is where you want it. A cold call list is usually cheaper than a real time or aged insurance lead. If you are used to buying these types of leads you might be in for a shock. If you like real time leads, but you cannot afford them try using aged insurance leads. These will be less expensive and can act as a very targeted cold call list.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Why Aged Insurance Leads Are Better Than Real Time Leads

There are many agents who swear by aged insurance leads and and others who claim real time leads are the way to go. This debate could go on and on so we will pick a side and make a good effort to demonstrate why aged insurance leads are better than real time leads.
When comparing and contrasting these two types of leads we must assume that the quality of both leads are the same. This means that both leads are actual people requesting a quote for insurance. No disconnected phone numbers, no spam email leads, and no survey leads.
Real time leads have the benefit of people looking for quotes at that moment. However, this can be worthless if the lead is being called by 5 or more agents all at once. Some might say exclusive real time leads are the way to go. These leads are also not ideal because the price for an exclusive insurance lead is far higher than a shared lead.   
This is were aged insurance leads can be beneficial. The sweet spot for calling insurance leads is 30-60 days after the initial leads was created. This allows time for all of the calls from agents buying the real time lead to die down. You will find that the prices for aged insurance leads are also down. An exclusive aged insurance lead can cost $5-6 less than a real time shared lead and $15-$20 less than a real time exclusive lead.
There is a market for both types of leads but if you havent given aged leads a try it might be something to consider. Especially if you are short on marketing funds or simply need to add extra prospects into your current pipeline.