Signing clients is one of the biggest challenges of running an independent insurance agency. Many agents find the process of signing the first client to be the most difficult aspect of establishing an agency. While you don’t need to worry about getting carrier approval or a good software platform when you join AAI, getting clients will require a lot of planning.
Starting From Scratch As An Independent Agent
Growing a client base is one of the biggest hurdles in running an independent agency. Here’s a look at some tips that can help you establish a good foundation:
Start with Friends and Family – Start marketing your insurance services to friends and family. They are often the first clients as well as the most dedicated supporters you may have. They will also be the most forgiving clients you have; great for fine-tuning your process and customer service skills.
Ask Them to Reach their Connections - Encourage them to speak with their connections about your agency. Speak with neighbors or community leaders to see if they are willing to spread the word among their connections as well.
Starting from the ground up can help you slowly expand your network and build strong relationships with prospective clients. A strong and consistent base will help your agency build a brand reputation that has longevity.
Setting Up A Strong Marketing Strategy
Starting with friends and family is great but that isn't enough for a growing client base. Agents need to implement aggressive marketing strategies to reach a wider audience. Here’s a look at some ways to accomplish this:
Focus on the Local Market – Focus on the local market and offer tailored solutions based on your understanding of their requirements. Target the right audience in the right places for good results.
Be Active – Be active in your local community, speak with community leaders and influencers, participate in local events like charity runs or children’s sports, etc. Being an active part of the community will help you reach a larger audience while establishing a strong reputation as well.
Join a Group – Join a networking group, like your local chapter of BNI (Business Network International) where like minded professionals share valuable contacts and referral sources in your community.
Invest in Digital Marketing – Invest in social media and online marketing strategies, particularly if you are located in smaller communities. Be creative with your strategy and approach prospects from multiple directions.
Contact a reliable insurance industry network like AAI, if you want to know more about the process of building a successful independent insurance business. They will offer tips, training, tools, and straightforward advice for our members on building a strong, consistent customer base.