There are many reasons to focus on online marketing. For one, consumers are relying more and more on the Internet and use it to get the majority of information about products and services before they buy, including insurance. It's easier to monitor your online marketing campaigns and determine their success.
One of the best reasons to use online marketing is that it is often more cost effective than many traditional offline marketing tactics like print advertising or direct mail.
Though online marketing can be more budget friendly, maintaining a successful online presence can add up quickly. Here are 7 tips on how to market your insurance agency online with a limited budget.
1. Know your audience
In any marketing campaign, to be successful you need to know your audience. Are you targeting a specific geographic area? Does this area have new families or retirees? Are there a lot of homeowners or renters?
Start asking your customers about their communication preferences so you can identify online marketing channels to focus on like Facebook, Twitter and email.
2. Set goals and modify when needed
What do you want to accomplish with your online marketing? More awareness? More leads and sales? By setting goals, it is easier to track success. As you reach your first set of goals, modify them so your agency is always striving for improvement.
3. Establish a budget
Make a marketing budget and identify how much you want to spend on a great website (this should include maintenance and content updates), search engine optimization, email marketing and social media. You could also do pay-per-click advertising, though if you are just starting out with online marketing or have a very limited budget, I highly recommend focusing mostly on search engine optimization as the return on your investment is much higher than pay-per-click advertising.
Marketing requires continuous attention and effort. If your budget is limited, identify those tactics that you can reasonably handle on your own and hire experts to help you with the others.
4. Identify your brand
What makes your agency different? Why would someone choose your agency over the competition? Is your agency more professional or laid back? How do your current customers view your agency? These are the questions you need to answer to help identify your brand as they will help direct you in your branding, including how your website looks and what you share on social media. This step can take up a lot of time. It's okay; it should. Because once your brand is established, all you need to worry about regarding your brand is being consistent and sticking to your brand values.
5. Optimize for the search engines
Search engine optimization (SEO) can be a complicated and time consuming process. However, it is an essential step to getting your website found. Just because your website is beautifully designed, does not mean leads will come. You have to help them find your website. SEO is how you do it. There are some basic steps you can take to help with SEO, but unless you have the time to keep up with the search engine changes and continuously make the necessary updates to your website, I highly recommend you hire someone to help with this step.
6. Blog, blog, blog
Remember in the previous step when I said there are some basic SEO steps you can do? Blogging is the easiest, and best, step because it adds fresh content to your website, which the search engines love. Blog posts also make great posts on social media and content for email newsletters.
7. Use social media
I highly recommend using social media as it is a great way to establish that you're an insurance expert as well as build relationships. But only sign up if you're going to use it. It is far worse to create a social media profile and not post to it than it is to not have one at all. Remember, blog posts are great content to share on social media. If you need other ideas for social media posts, well, we've got that covered too.
About the Author
As vice president of marketing, Becky Schroeder oversees ITC’s growth through marketing and drives the overall marketing strategy for the company and its products. Her specialties include advertising, social media, email marketing, content marketing and public relations. Becky has a master’s degree in integrated marketing communication from Emerson College in Boston and a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Texas A&M University. Becky is a big Texas A&M football fan and enjoys cooking, reading and spending time with her husband and their three daughters.Follow on Twitter More Content by Becky Schroeder