We may not always think of representatives who sell annuities for insurance companies as small business owners. However, at a minimum, being an agent for a company makes you a contractor, and you will only earn enough to live on if you’re aggressively setting and achieving personal sales goals. That being said, you must focus heavily on relationships with clients, and that’s why it’s easy to think of yourself as having the needs of other small business owners. Your little agency is a mini-organization with the needs of all similar firms. Recently, we read on Entrepreneur.com why it’s important to know what your competitors are doing and then to use the same strategies. Chris Simpson explains below:
“Look around your industry. Watch what’s going on. Study your competition. Follow what works. Why wouldn’t you? Your competitors are selling their wares to the same target market you are. And if what they’re doing is working, you can bet it could work for you too!”
Take a Step Back
This advice is immediately applicable to reps like us marketing annuities to consumers who are risk-averse but are unconvinced that they want to buy a product now. We must look at how other sales reps for insurance companies are effectively marketing their products and achieving more sales. On the one hand, you can call your contacts in the annuity industry and see what they are doing. On the other hand, you can read our blog and get ideas. The point is that you know that an annuity-selling agent must try new strategies to establish and build those relationships with prospects. We are in the sales business, after all, to make money!
Learn From Your Own Mistakes
Simpson mentions that you can learn from the mistakes of your competitors, but you can also learn from your own. Last year, if you sent out a postcard to everyone in your prospect database and got only a few responses, this year you need to try a different marketing tactic. It could be time to consult with marketing experts about print or digital marketing strategies, but it could also be time to revisit your website and blog. For example, you should be able to look at your own blog and determine which posts have received the most hits in the past six months. You want to remove the pieces of content that had few clicks and to write more pieces like the ones that had the most clicks. You also want to read any comments and follow up with those individuals. They may have questions about your agency or about the annuities and other life insurance products that you sell.
Create a Sense of Urgency
Simpson also explains that people can use their marketing materials, whether email letters or glossy postcards, to build a sense of urgency in prospective customers. You want to write blog posts and other kinds of marketing copy that encourage people to learn more about annuities right now. They need to understand that they aren’t protecting their financial interests or those of their dependents without the right product. You can also create a sense of urgency when you talk to people in person, over the phone, or on email. You can say something like this: “Well, I am glad that you asked that question, Ms. Perez. A multi-year fixed annuity can give you minimum returns year over year, making it a predictable investment with an acceptable risk. Of course, I want you to bring Mr. Perez and your son into my office to get all their annuity questions answered too! We should really sit down and look at the type of annuity that best fits your needs.” With this kind of speech, regardless of the mode of communication, you are creating the need for the person to set an appointment, and then you can make the case for their purchase of an annuity instrument.