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Lead generation can be a challenging area for insurance agents, but that doesn’t mean you have to (or should) go out and buy a list of leads. Nor do you necessarily have to spend a lot on advertising. There are plenty of ways to generate free insurance leads for agents, as long as you’re willing to invest time and connect with what your potential customer base cares about.
When trying to generate free insurance leads for agents, remember to be patient. It’s easy to get discouraged and turn to paid lead generation methods, but if you stick with it, you can see results. Once leads start coming in, your success often builds on itself and quickly snowballs in a positive way.
Put another way, generating free insurance leads for insurance agents is somewhat like growing a plant. When you plant the seeds, it’s hard to know if anything’s working under the surface. But eventually, the plant breaks through the ground and soon you start to see the plant growing in all directions, much like your free leads start blooming across multiple channels.
In this article, we’ll explore five ways to generate free insurance leads for agents.
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#1 Improve Your SEO
The most cost-effective way to generate free insurance leads for agents is to improve your website’s search engine optimization (SEO). People interested in the products you offer can find your business by typing keywords into a search engine, such as Google or Bing.
The better your SEO, the higher you rank in the results, and the more people will click through to your site and become leads. Leads can be defined in a number of ways, depending on your goals, such as by contacting you through your site, filling out a form, requesting a quote, or signing up for your email list. Improving your SEO can be free, as there are plenty of articles and other resources online that walk you through boosting your SEO.
One way to improve your SEO is to adjust your website copy to include more of the keywords that you think potential customers will search for. Another is to expand your website content through blog articles that align with the search terms people are using to find the products you offer. If you can write SEO-friendly content, then you can reach new audiences through search engines, without having to rely on pay-per-click search ads.
“With some strategic content, properly optimized for the people who need it most, your lead generation strategy could quickly take on a whole new life,” notes Marketo, a marketing platform.
#2 Engage on Social Media
Social media is another popular channel for generating free insurance leads for agents. However, many people use social media ineffectively. The challenge that many insurance agents and other professionals face is how to generate leads. Often times they go into full sales mode on social and post what looks and sounds like ads. While social media may be a free place to post salesy messages, it is generally an ineffective way to attract new leads.
Instead, insurance agents should aim to build real engagement on social media through conversations, rather than just talking to their followers. For example, responding to a prospect’s post with helpful advice, rather than just a link to buy a policy from you, can help them grow to trust you and value you what they have to say. In turn, that can result in a lead who’s interested in buying from you, rather than them being turned off by your overly aggressive approach.
“Business leaders want to buy from people they trust,” notes Hubspot.
In your own posts, aim for a more conversational format, such as by asking your audience their opinions or at least sharing helpful, non-salesy information. The more value you provide your followers on social media coupled with activities designed to drive engagement (asking questions, responding to comments, posting a video on a topic of interest), the more likely you are to drive leads from your social channels.
#3 Create a Lead Magnet
A more direct way to generate free leads is to create what’s known as a lead magnet.
“A lead magnet is a ‘freebie’ such as an ebook or a cheat sheet or any other content upgrade that you offer your website visitors as an incentive in exchange for their contact information, usually their email address, for the purpose of lead generation and email list building,” explains EngageBay, a CRM platform.
You’ve probably come across lead magnets before if you’ve ever put in your contact information to download a report, for example. The content needs to be worth providing this data, so consider what your audience finds valuable and what might not easily be found elsewhere. For example, you might put together a comprehensive risk management checklist for new business owners to download.
Other lead magnets include:
- how-to guide
- case study
- free insurance quote
Still, you need to be able to draw in people to your lead magnet. That’s why it’s important to have other channels working for you. If you have an engaged social media audience, for instance, you might have some success by sharing your lead magnet there. Or you might be able to craft a landing page for your lead magnet that has great SEO to pull in prospects.
#4 Build a Referral Engine
One of the best ways to generate free insurance leads for agents is to leverage the power of your existing customer base. Those who’ve already purchased from you should not be overlooked but rather nurtured for even more value. If you can build good relationships with current customers, you can build a referral engine, where they recommend you to others who might need the policies you sell.
Some of the ways to build a referral engine include:
- Taking the time to meet with clients, such as before renewals, to review their circumstances and build relationships
- Creating a template for asking clients for referrals, such as a note that you send out after onboarding new customers
- Offering referral rewards, though this may depend on the regulations related to your specific business, so consult with proper experts. That said, many businesses find success by offering referral rewards like merchandise giveaways to those who provide a certain number of referrals.
Building your referral engine can take time, but often once you figure out what works to get customers to recommend you to others, the easier it gets to then have the free insurance leads start rolling in. You also can look to gain referrals from people other than your customers, such as insurance agents with different specialties than you or friends who may have heard about someone who needs a policy that you sell.
#5 Attend Networking Events
Attending networking events is also a great way to generate free insurance leads for agents, as people are often receptive to exchanging information and potentially trading business or at least providing advice. While some networking events carry a cost, there are also plenty of free networking events that you can attend, both online and in-person.
Look to sites like Meetup and Eventbrite, as well as business groups in your area to see if there are any events that you would like to attend. Often these events are free thanks to sponsors, so you can attend, learn from other business professionals, and potentially find new leads directly. Even if you don’t meet anyone who’s looking for insurance at that time, attending networking events can be valuable, such as if you meet a new contact who then refers you to a lead who’s interested in purchasing an insurance policy.
Closing New Leads
As these examples show, there are plenty of ways to generate free insurance leads for agents. But you don’t want to stop at gaining the contact information for some qualified prospects. You want to convert those leads into customers, which can result in a positive cycle of those customers eventually recommending you to new leads.
Using tools like Wheelhouse can help you close these deals, as new leads can simply and quickly generate bindable quotes from your website or through channels like social media, where they’re directed to a targeted landing page. Making this process easy and clear can help you get more out of your lead generation efforts.