As an insurance agent, you likely think you have a solid grasp of how you are doing in managing your customer base.
The truth is – you probably don’t. Unfortunately, most insurance agents are not focusing on client retention – and they are losing clients because of it. Here are some of the common mistakes made:
- Over-focusing on signing new clients rather than retaining the ones they have.
- Not investing much time with clients outside of renewals and claims.
- Believing retention will naturally occur with excellent customer service.
Yes, zeroing in on new clients is essential for all insurance agencies, no matter the size. If you do not bring in new clients, you will have to rely on cross-sales to increase commissions. However, if your existing clients are leaving as fast as you can gain new ones, it is challenging to grow an insurance agency.
Finding new clients versus client retention
It is known that in most insurance agencies, new policies bring in higher commissions than renewals. It costs an insurance agency 6 to 7 times more to acquire a new client vs. retaining a client. When the acquisition is accounted for, existing clients are netting higher long-term profits for the insurance agency.
Why are your clients leaving your insurance agency?
Keep in mind – most clients are leaving your insurance agency, not because of the price of products, or holes in satisfaction. The top reason – by far – that clients leave their providers is because they feel like their insurance agency doesn’t genuinely care. Studies show that over half of clients go because they think their insurance agents feel indifferent about them.
This may turn the notion of client retention upside down for you and your insurance agency. Excellent service prevents less than a quarter of clients from leaving. The perception of a lack of care comes from inconsistent and infrequent communication.
Communicating with clients almost solely during renewals and appeals can leave your clients feeling this way. Clients want you to offer them personal contact; they want to be shown and offered better coverage options. This shows them that they are not just a number to you and that you genuinely care about what is best for them.
Lack of returning phone calls can also be an issue for clients. Answering and returning missed calls from clients goes hand in hand with showing them you care. They most likely call because they need to know something or want your help. They want to hear back from you.
The proof is there, your clients are not leaving because a factor generally out of your control. The number one reason your clients are leaving you is in your control.
Here are some ways to combat what can feel like inconsistent communication and a lack of care to clients.
First of all, send out welcome emails, always. These can set the tone for your client-agent relationship. You can keep it brief, and include all of your contact information. Always encourage clients to reach out with any questions or needs.
You could set up automatic replies for any email or messaging platform that you have. These replies could acknowledge that you got their message and will get back to them as soon as you can. Make sure you are scheduling time in your day to do call clients back or respond to messages, emails, and other questions in case you get busy and cannot reply right away. Be as diligent and prompt with replies as you possibly can.
Next, reach out to your clients more often than twice a year. Send out holiday cards, birthday cards, etc. Call and check in on them for end-of-year reviews and for cross-selling opportunities. Always double-check and ensure that they are satisfied with their coverage.
Share age-related reminders with clients. Are they turning 65? Reach out with information regarding Medicare plans or options they may be interested in. Do they have a child turning 26? Offer materials and assistance to the child to help them find their best plan after they age off. Always follow up with a call a few days after sending these, making sure they got the materials and asking if they have any questions or concerns.
Hopefully, this article has helped you to understand the main reason clients leave agents and the ways you can eliminate this problem. Clients just want to feel like you care, and simply showing them that can help your client satisfaction and retention immensely.
For more help with client retention, visit www.agentpipeline.com or call us at 800.962.4693 today!