Outbound marketing efforts are becoming easier for consumers to block. For instance, with the release of TIVO, consumers no longer have to sit through TV commercials, do-not-call lists impede telemarketing efforts, and so on. Therefore, many agents are rethinking the way they advertise their agency.
We are receiving reports that quite a number of agents are achieving success by engaging in new marketing techniques referred to as inbound marketing. Instead of sending out costly mass advertising only to receive a few responses, many agents are finding they receive a higher return on their marketing dollar with value driven marketing as a means to get prospects to contact them, thus the term inbound.
What is Value Driven Marketing?
Value driven marketing is delivering informative and relevant content to a targeted prospect or customer. It is all about the customer, addressing their wants and their needs.
For example, a common question insureds often ask when obtaining a homeowners policy is 'Why is my house insured for more than it's worth?' In a value driven marketing piece, an agent could post an article explaining the significance of insuring their home for the replacement cost value versus the market value.
Value driven marketing can...
- Get exposure
- Obtain brand recognition
- Turn leads into relationships
- Earn loyalty and trust from customers
- Demonstrate the vendor is an expert in their field
By providing value content on your website regularly, you also achieve higher search engine rankings. Search engines thirst for fresh content, especially content informative in nature.
One free tool many agents are using in their Value Driven Marketing strategy is Twitter. Twitter is a social networking service that allows users to post updates about themselves or their business. These updates are received instantly by their followers (users that requested to receive the updates). The updates can also be posted publically and are archived, meaning they are searchable. A Twitter account is not required to view the post; therefore, you will often find Twitter posts on major search engines such as Google or Yahoo.
While Twitter is a no cost advertising tool, as with any other effective marketing strategy, it takes time and effort. Keep consistent with your posts and make sure they address your customers wants and needs. Also, be sure to ask everyone to follow you. Include a signature line on your emails 'Follow me on Twitter'. Encourage your staff to ask current clients to follow you, even include your Twitter link on your business cards.
About the Author
AnMarie Bozick, CIC, manages ITC’s rating products, including TurboRater and TurboRater for Websites. She has more than 20 years of property and casualty insurance experience, including owning her own agency and serving as president of the Alliance of Insurance Agents of Texas. She joined ITC in 2008.More Content by AnMarie Bozick, CIC