Successful insurance agents and brokers know that to sustain their sales they must set aside money each year to market their products.
It would be ideal if you could depend solely on referrals, but you have to spend money to draw in a steady stream of clients. That's why it's important to put your money where it will do the most good.
Here are nine ways to effectively use your sales and marketing budget:
1. Update your business website's calls to action
A call to action (CTA) is a statement designed to create immediate responses from online shoppers, such as "subscribe now" or "click here to download the e-guide." To make sure your CTAs are effective, HubSpot recommends sorting them by click and conversion rates.
You may also need to hire a marketing professional who can help you revise low-performing CTAs by changing their design or updating their wording. The goal is to have CTAs that create a strong connection between your messaging and your landing pages. Hubspot estimates the cost at $50 per CTA.
2. Host a community event
A good way to promote your business is by hosting a community event, says In Buzz Group. The idea is to do this without the help of other companies so that your business will be the focus of the public's attention.
You'll need to create a banner with your agency's name and logo. You may also want to distribute T-shirts, baseball caps, and other giveaway items. The cost of doing this is estimated at $1,000 to $5,000.
3. Use “heat maps" to learn how consumers use your website
It's important to know how visitors are interacting with your website. HubSpot suggests installing heat map tracking tools on your homepage. Heat maps can tell you whether potential clients are clicking where you'd like them to.
They can also tell you if consumers are scrolling far enough down on the page to read the messages you want them to see. The estimated cost of installing these tracking tools is $150.
4. Place ads online
To succeed in advertising, you have to place your ads where the customers are. Increasingly, that place is online.
There are numerous websites that accept ads, including Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. According to In Buzz Group, ads are typically pay-per-click. That means you only pay when someone engages with the ad. The minimum cost to start an ad online is about $10.
5. Join a business networking group
An important part of selling is developing relationships. For about $300 to $400 per year, you can be part of a local chamber of commerce, says Grasshopper. Members of chambers and business meet-up groups help each other through referrals. There may also be lists of past and current members you can use for your marketing outreach.
6. Hire a PR firm
Unlike advertisers, public relations (PR) firms promote insurance businesses by generating editorial coverage, Forbes notes. They seek mentions of your business in reports that appear in magazines, in newspapers, on websites, and on television programs.
The National Federation of Independent Business says PR firms typically charge about $125 per hour.
7. Write new articles for your blog
If you maintain a blog on your website, make sure you have fresh content with which you can engage potential clients. To draw in readers, blogs should contain useful, updated information for consumers. HubSpot puts the cost at about $150 per blog post.
8. Conduct an SEO audit
A Search Engine Optimization (SEO) audit evaluates your company website in a variety of ways. The auditor develops recommendations improvements to make your website more likely to be found by search engines.
Hiring an SEO auditor will cost you between $1,000 and $3,000, depending on the size of the site and the depth of the audit, according to Digital Current.
9. Rent a billboard
It's common to see billboard ads for insurance. Billboards are a proven way to present your name to the public, but they aren't cheap and their costs vary widely.
Grasshopper contacted companies in cities around the country and found that four-week billboard advertising costs can vary from $3,000 to $23,000.