Building a Prospect's Decision Momentum (Overcoming Diminishing Intent)

May 6, 2013 Laird Rixford

You have to eat right and exercise to lose weight. You have to build that new fence. Your company needs a new website. You need to get a life insurance policy that requires an exam. Whatever it is, you know you have to do it, and you should be doing it right now. Instead of doing it, you procrastinate. You will do it later and the longer you wait, the less likely you are to do it.

John Maxwell, a business philosopher, mentions that this is the Law of Diminishing Intent meaning that over time your intent to do something lessens. I want to add one more point to this. The intent diminishes proportionally to the difficulty, or perceived difficulty, that the task presents. Otherwise, the harder the task seems, the quicker your intent to complete that task wanes.

When it comes to consumers, your job as a businessperson is to get them to make a decision while they still have the intent to take action. You can do this through ongoing interaction. I call this, 'building decision momentum' for the prospective client.

Just Kicking the Tires?

Everyone has walked around a place of business and kicked the proverbial tires. Your consumer might be looking at anything from a new car to something on the Internet. Could he just be looking? Sure, however, he is also displaying an intent or need. Something drove him to take time out of his busy schedule to visit your place of business. Does he think that the purchase of your product will make him more efficient, safer or more financially secure?

The first step of building decision momentum is to let the consumer know that you are interested in fulfilling their needs. Send them an email thanking them for their interest. Let them know that you have what they are looking for and that you can quickly meet their needs.

Is this difficult?

As mentioned before, the more difficult the task, the quicker the intent diminishes. ITC encounters this all the time when migrating customers to our platforms. For example, when we bring a new customer onto the Insurance Website Builder platform the task that takes the most effort is the migration of the domain name and email. Therefore, our website on-boarding team's number one goal is making sure that we complete the migration for the new customer. We make this very clear during the sales process.

As for insurance, people perceive that changing agencies or companies is a hassle. The fact is, it really is not. The next push you need to make is letting your prospect know that it is easy to switch and you will help them every step of the way. Remove any doubt in their mind that there are barriers to entry.

Following Up

This is a no brainer. Once you have communicated all of the above...continue to stay in touch with them. With any volume of prospects, this can become a large task. To make your job less difficult, utilize an agency marketing system that continually sends follow up emails that reminds them of their original intent. Keep following up until they buy or ...

Let Go

Sometimes there are valid reasons as to why someone does not buy. Usually this means that they had intent at one point yet found that their current situation was acceptable. The key to this situation is that you should always ask why you did not win the business. You might be able to overcome the objection if the prospect has yet to buy. Otherwise, utilize this information to understand the next time someone has the same intent. Review your process to make sure you are hitting all the points that your consumers care about.

Remember, everyone has a propensity to procrastinate and delay complex tasks. Insurance is not drool worthy like the latest tablet or car. No one is standing in line for insurance. Every time you meet a prospect they will have a need (everyone needs insurance) and they will have intent (they came to you for a reason).

Make it your intention to have all the tools required to maintain these constant lines of communication as you build the decision momentum. Getting setup with an excellent agency marketing system complete with website, search engine optimization, social media, email, print and text message marketing is quick and easy with ITC...get started today.

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About the Author

Laird Rixford

As CEO, Laird Rixford is responsible for providing strategic direction and leadership for the company. Rixford has a proven executive management track record and has more than 20 years of experience in entrepreneurship and insurance technology. An expert in insurance technology and marketing, Laird is a recognized public speaker and has presented at industry events across the United States.

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