As an insurance agent, it’s your job to always be on the hunt for new ways to build your reputation, grow your base of clients, and increase your return on investment. After all, selling insurance is competitive, plain and simple. And all the improvements you strive to make are, in the end, about making more sales in this competitive world. But there are only so many customers to go around, right? Fortunately, though, there is one excellent way to get a leg up on the competition that doesn’t involve constantly taking on new customers: cross-selling products.
What Is Cross-Selling?
Simply defined, cross-selling just means offering extra products or services to someone who is an existing customer. In the insurance world, this usually means offering an additional type of policy to someone who already has a policy with you. For example, if you are talking with a client of yours about their current health insurance policy, you might additionally offer them supplemental insurance, such as vision or dental coverage.
Cross-selling is an effective strategy for increasing your sales, since you will already have the advantage of knowing the client. This means you have already established some sort of relationship in the past. So, you can increase their trust in you by pairing them with a separate, quality policy that fills another of their needs.
Benefits of Cross-Selling
There are several reasons why cross-selling is important for agents. For example, with cross-selling you’ll be able to:
- Increase your revenue – You’ll be selling multiple products to an existing base of customers, so in turn you will receive multiple commissions.
- Boost the loyalty of your clients – If someone has one policy with you, there is a good chance that they will come back the prior year to renew it with you. If they have multiple policies with you, that chance of renewal is even higher. They will also be less likely to switch to a competitor. The more satisfied clients you have, the more your reputation grows, ultimately leading to more profit!
- Save time and effort – Cross-selling actually streamlines your administrative work. Since your customer will be purchasing multiple products from the same insurer, they will benefit from the convenience. And since everything is consolidated, you will benefit from less paperwork.
Cross-Selling Best Practices
Know Your Clients
In order to cross-sell insurance policies most effectively, it is important that you have a thorough understanding of your clients. This includes their needs, wants, and financial situation. Try to do a deep dive into the clients that you think could benefit from some other type of policy. Begin to separate these clients into groups depending on coverage type and other details.
To do this properly, you may want to conduct regular reviews of the data you already have on file for your clients. This will give you the best idea of what potential cross-selling opportunities you have. If all else fails, you can try simply asking your clients what other types of insurance they need or are thinking about.
Reaching out to current clients on a regular basis to look at their changing needs is key to discovering cross-selling opportunities. Ways to regularly communicate include phone calls, personal emails, or even a monthly newsletter. This ongoing conversation will help to reveal what other insurance products they may be interested in. While also building their trust in you.
Make sure when reaching out that you keep things on a personal level. And that you don’t seem like all you’re interested in is making a sale. The more comfortable the client is, the more likely they are to open up further about their needs and wants.
Have a Plan & Bundle Accordingly
When you are cross-selling insurance products, bundling the right products together is half the battle. To make sure you’re doing this, you’ll have to plan ahead of time. Do some research and decide what products relate to or complement one another. Then you can make lists of the potential clients for each bundle, before reaching out to make the sale.
When preparing, it’s important to explore the reasons why bundling for a particular individual would be beneficial. Here are some examples of cross-selling opportunities that you can offer the right customers:
- Commercial insurance policies – If you have recently sold a business owner’s policy to someone, start by thinking about other products that would benefit them, like cyber liability insurance. Another option could be to pitch them a workers’ compensation policy if they don’t already have one.
- Life insurance policies – Since there are also multiple types of life insurance policies, you also have a big opportunity to cross-sell if this is the product you sell. For example, if your customer already has a term life policy, but they like planning ahead and want to be able to pay for their funeral after passing away. Try pitching them a final expense or burial coverage policy.
- Health Insurance policies – Some customers who already have health insurance may be interested in some sort of health-related supplemental coverage. Such as dental, vision, and more.
These are only a few of the insurance-related cross-selling opportunities, but there are many more. So, don’t be afraid to think outside of the box!
Make Clients Aware
This is a simple tip, but if you want to start cross-selling, you’ll need to make sure that your clients are aware of all the products that you sell. When you initially sign on a customer, you can mention the other products that you offer, just make sure not to bombard them from the start with all the products you can sell them.
It’s especially important to remember to let your clients know about any bundling discounts that you can offer them if they choose to purchase multiple products from you. Saving money is always in the clients best interest and is therefore a great selling point. Try saying something like, “I know we’re getting you a quote for health insurance, but just so you know, we do offer bundling discounts if you have other insurance needs, such as dental or vision.” It’s easy to put it out there, and the worst they can say is that they aren’t interested right now. Whatever you do, just make sure that you are understanding and not pushy.
If you’re not sure how to bring up your other products, you could even include all of the products that you sell on a website or social media page, and then simply send a link to any customer you think might be interested. You can also try adding a recording to your voicemail or a hold message that includes information about your products. Believe it or not, it isn’t always obvious to the average customer that insurance agents sell more than one product. So, it’s best to make them aware as soon as possible.
Referrals and Testimonials
If you haven’t noticed by now, reputation and trust is everything when it comes to insurance agents. For this reason, encouraging client referrals and testimonials, and using them to your advantage, is vital. Try to incentivize clients to write a testimonial or refer a friend or family member if they are satisfied with your services. Not only will this help to bring more customers your way. But it will also provide proof that you are a reliable and fair agent. A friend’s suggestion could be a key factor in someone deciding to bundle products together or not, so keep this in mind.
CRM Systems and Other Tech
Using technology to your advantage when it comes to customer insight and preferences is always in your best interest. For example, many insurance agents use a customer relationship management system (CRM). This helps track client conversations, policy details, and client preferences. A CRM system allows you to more easily identify cross-selling opportunities. And can also help you keep track of where you stand with a specific customer. CRM systems can even automate follow-ups with clients, making sure that you never forget to touch base.
Other ways that technology can be used for cross-selling purposes include using software that runs analysis on large sets of data. When using software to analyze data, you’ll be able to track behavior trends and pinpoint certain selling points for particular demographics, making it easier to develop segmented cross-selling campaigns.
Track Your Success (and Failures)
Staying organized by keeping track of your cross-selling efforts will pay off in the long run. Whatever result you get from your efforts, you will still gain valuable insight. And learn about what works and what doesn’t.
You can start by simply tracking the revenue that you’ve generated specifically from cross-selling. Another way to track progress is to keep an eye on retention rates of clients who you’ve cross-sold to. This will show you how much of your cross-selling is promoting customer loyalty. Lastly, it’s always a good idea to ask your clients for feedback and to log that information. Using this feedback, you’ll then be able to improve your sales approach in the future.
Cross-selling provides insurance agents like you with numerous opportunities to increase their revenue, and build customer confidence. By understanding the needs of your clients, and using effective strategies and technology, when necessary, you’ll be able to successfully cross-sell more products. Maintaining trust between yourself and your clients should always be top of mind. Doing so will be the main factor in your cross-selling successes or failures.
To build this trust, remember to communicate regularly, plan ahead of time according to your customers’ needs, and make them aware of the products you offer and any available discounts. Though it may seem challenging at first, if you are persistent and knowledgeable, cross-selling will help you to retain more clients. And bring you a new stream of revenue.
If you are interested in our exclusive insurance leads, or simply want to learn more tips to become a better agent, visit our website at Benepath.net. We offer a variety of insurance lead products including data leads and inbound phone calls for the following verticals: individual health, group health, Medicare, life, and commercial. Our leads are always produced in real-time and are never sold to more than one buyer. To get started fill out a form on our site or give us a call at 888-684-3121.