Weak Lead? Or Missed Opportunity?

Weak leads are inevitable. It’s not possible to convert every lead into a sale. But just because you feel like you’ve ended up with a cold lead, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try your best to change the situation. Giving up after only one call could mean missed opportunities. What seemed like a weak lead at first might just be a customer who is not ready to act or commit. There are ways to help push these leads in the right direction without losing them. If you want to work a cold lead, then there are a couple of strategies you can use to turn the situation around. 

Follow Up!

cell phone in someones hand with the email tab open
If you have an email address, then shoot your prospect an email.

How often have you heard things like, “I was just looking,” or “I’m not ready yet, I’m just shopping” from leads? You have probably even caught yourself saying those exact words to a salesperson at a store. If you find yourself hearing these phrases on a cold call, don’t push. Instead, try a different tactic and follow up with the lead in a different way. You can email, text, or message them online. You have their information because they were looking for quotes or help with insurance policies, so give them a way to communicate with you that they might feel more comfortable with. They might just need a little more attention – and creativity – than other leads. 

The information that a lead has provided in your application allows you different opportunities to connect with them. You can:

1. Email Instead

If you have an email address, then shoot your prospect an email. Some people do not like talking on the phone, so an email is one way to get their attention and a response. You can also add them to your drip emails. This will give them some information about your business, let them know how they can reach you when they need help, and keep your name on their minds. It is a subtle yet effective way to get a lead on board.

If you were able to get enough information from them while on the phone, then send them an email with a quote so they can reply when they are ready. Whenever possible, always send a quote. Sending general information is okay, but is often not enough to get someone’s attention. Personalized quotes will make a difference. 

2. Send Some Snail Mail

As outdated as people think this is, it still works! Everyone checks their mailboxes everyday, and it  can be an especially effective way to communicate with older prospects. Personalize the letter as much as possible before sending it out. 

two women sitting at a table talking

3. Visit The Lead

While digital meetings have become much more common these days, one way to reach out to your lead and stand out in their minds is by having an in-person meeting with them. If the information on the application is correct, and they live close by, then stop by their home. Bring a small gift to offer with your information and, if they are not home, then leave it all on their doorstep. 

Don’t Be Overly Aggressive

Patience is a virtue. Many agents often give up too quickly, and write off a cold lead after the first call. You have to build relationships and establish trust with prospects. But it’s all about balance – if you are overly aggressive, then you risk scaring off your lead and losing their business completely. As outlined above, there are ways to reach the lead the right way without being aggressive. There are true cold leads out there, but most of the time you can find a way to get a quote to someone – it may just take a little extra effort on your part. And if you can get a quote to someone, you might just convert a cold lead into a good sale. 

Finding good leads shouldn’t be hard, which is why Benepath offers exclusive real-time leads. We provide you all the information the lead gives us, so you don’t have to worry about jumping through hoops to reach them. You can receive leads by text, email, and we can sync to your CRM. Not only do we assign your lead exclusively to you, but we also give you the ability to create your own branded thank you page, so your lead knows your name, business, and biography as soon as they complete our form.

How to Follow-Up the Right Way

We live in a time of information overload. Let’s face it–your email may just be glanced over if not sent directly to the spam bin. If you want to convert your spam to sale, you have to write follow-up emails that work.

Repetitive language and email templates aren’t going to get you any closer to success, especially if you’re using phrases like “just seeing how you’re doing.” Language like this is overused like the words “very” or “good.” 

Now, there’s nothing wrong with these words; but there’s a time and place. Starting an email with “I’m very excited. Have you seen this very good discount?” is going to send anyone into snoresville.

Enough about the wrong ways, let’s go over how you can send a follow-up the right way. Just keep these ideas in mind: Define, Clarify, and Time.

Define

Like starting a road trip, you won’t get far if you just hop in the car with no destination in mind. If you’re writing a follow-up email, you have to understand what your purpose is. This is one of the biggest mistakes people make.

man sending a follow-up email at his desk
Defining your email is the best place to start. Make sure you know why you’re sending the message in the first place.

The point of defining your follow-up is like setting your GPS. These are the most common types:

  • Reminder- Prompting someone to respond to an earlier email.
  • Thank You- Showing appreciation for a sale or otherwise.
  • Request- Asking for more information or another sales push

Knowing which one you’re writing is going to give you the parameters for your call-to-action.  A reminder follow-up has a completely different tone than a thank-you. 

Define clearly what your objective is for your email. We’ll take the reminder as an example. You’ve spoken with a client, and the conversation went well. It’s been longer than necessary for a callback, so you decide to reach out and send a follow-up email.

Your needs are not to congratulate them or request anything; you simply need to remind them about your earlier conversation. Your call-to-action is similar to what you’ve spoken about before. Now that you understand this, it’s time to clarify.

Clarify

The immediate message your client takes from your email shouldn’t be “hey, you forgot about me trying to sell you this.” It has to be something human. It’s difficult, but you have to catch their eye with something emotional, something that makes them want to read more.

Your opening line can be the same as your subject line. It has to hook the reader, make them feel something about your connection (or make them regret not connecting earlier). This can involve some homework.

Involve information from the last time you spoke. You can open with “Remember [topic] we spoke about last week?” or “Congrats on [achievement].” Remember to keep these openers professional. While humor is a good way to connect with people, maintaining a professional air during written correspondence is always in style.

After the opening paragraph (and their hook for caring), you must deliver a clear purpose. Be as straightforward as possible without coming off as rude. For example, instead of stating “I’d like to call you sometime this week,” write “I’d love to chat with you about [topic] we covered last time. How does Wednesday afternoon sound?”

The more concrete you sound, the better. People respond well to clear, concise phrasing, especially if it concerns their finances. No one wants to be confused when it comes to their money.

sending a follow-up email with a cell phone
Bonus tip: if you’re sending emails with your phone, make sure they’re still formatted correctly!

Time

So, now that you’ve defined what your follow-up is for, including the call-to-action, and you’ve drafted an email with a clear purpose, there is one last thing to consider. Before you hit the send button, make sure you have the email timed correctly.

This means to be mindful of the situation you’re responding to. For example, if your purpose is to prompt another conversation, like an interview, you’d likely wait a week or so. Nothing irritates a prospective employer more than constant proddings. 

However, if it’s a thank-you note or something similar, that is perfectly acceptable within a 24-hour period. The point is to make sure the email’s purpose aligns with how much time it takes up. If someone just needs to read it quickly and can continue with their day, then a shorter time frame is fine. If your email has more of a time commitment attached (like a new meeting or more tasks), then wait longer to send.

Follow-up emails have major power for your business. If you’re looking to drive up conversion rates, nothing works faster than proper communication. People will not only respect you as a reliable source, but they’ll also trust you with their business, valuing your relationship.

Long follow-up time leads to customer dissatisfaction and sale decreases

Marketing today is as much about keeping existing customers as it is about attracting new ones. If customers have a good experience using your product or service, they are more likely to spread the word.

When those new leads call you, you need to be readily available. While it is true that some days are frantically busy, the truth is that leads can not wait. Timely contact with a person asking for insurance information is key in finalizing sales.

In fact, research has found that customers view the appropriate phone call wait time to be three minutes. When it comes to email, most customers expect a response within one business day. However, in the current technology boom, customers are expecting email response time to be even shorter.

You need to keep track of all the communication outlets and be ready to answer questions, offer solutions and address any problems. Keeping real time leads waiting is not a good idea, because if you wait long enough you may lose the advantage of calling when potential insurance buyers are actively asking for information.

Always work leads first to achieve long-term success in the form of happy and loyal customers.

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