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Need insurance marketing ideas? I bet you do, considering what used to be a face-to-face industry has moved online, and what worked 10 years ago to get you new policyholders won’t work anymore.
Chances are, this isn’t the first article you’ve read on insurance marketing—but I’ve designed it to be the only one you’ll ever need. Too many articles out there will give you a bulleted list of random insurance marketing ideas. Most of these marketing ideas are one-off, and, while they may work to get you one or two new policyholders, they aren’t exactly a strategy or a sustainable way of beating your competitors.
Because that’s what we’re really talking about here—you need to stand out enough in a competitive market so adults will choose your insurance company over the next one. One marketing campaign won’t do it.
The answer isn’t a random collection of ideas; it’s a comprehensive strategy that incorporates them. That’s what this article aims to provide. Below, you’ll find the top strategies and online insurance marketing ideas that the professionals employ to attract new policyholders, differentiate your brand, and retain existing policyholders. Hopefully, you’ll walk away with a deep understanding of today’s policyholder and how to use digital marketing to turn them into lifelong customers.
Insurance Marketing Ideas to Attract New Policyholders
Your first hurdle in getting lifelong customers is breaking through the online noise and attracting them. But, beware: today’s consumers don’t like being sold to, they want to do their own research, and they naturally view insurance companies with skepticism. Today’s consumer is used to instant, sophisticated, seamless shopping experiences. Purchasing insurance is no different—policyholders expect the same easy process as they’d have when buying new shoes on Amazon. The following strategies and ideas are designed to solve for those caveats.
1. Doctor up your insurance website
Your website is frequently the first interaction policyholders will have with your company. If they don’t connect with what they see within 10 seconds of landing on a webpage they’ll move onto another provider. Three rules of thumb are that your website needs to be fast, it needs to be secure, and it needs to be mobile-friendly.
I’ll show you what I mean—over 50 percent of searches for insurance happen from mobile devices:
That should tell you something about the usability and customer experience potential policyholders expect.
But isn’t enough to just be mobile-friendly. Your website needs to load in under three seconds—47 percent of people expect a web page to load in two seconds or less! Considering the average mobile page speed is 15 seconds, you have work to do.
Go here and test your site speed and usability. If it’s red, you’ve got a problem. Here—take a look at how you stack up against a couple of your big-time competitors:
Other ideas to doctor up your website?
- Have contact information front and center – Most people’s eyes will gravitate towards the top right-hand corner.
- Include plenty of calls-to-action – People won’t do things unless you tell them to, so give them some direction.
- Install a chat feature – Nobody, especially now, likes to wait. The idea is that if the top insurance companies can answer questions instantly, yours should be able to as well.
- Speak their language – Millennials and Baby Boomers have different priorities, different outlooks on life, and different expectations. Why, then, are you serving them the same messaging? What connects with a 65-year-old may not do it for a 26-year-old.
- Use colors that convey meaning – I’m not a behavioral psychologist, but it doesn’t take a Ph.D. to know that colors on a website influence people’s emotions. While I’d like to say most people make decisions based on logic, that’s rarely the case. Strike an emotional chord and you’ve just nudged the door open.
- Have plugins that alter the content based on the user’s location, so they’re always seeing localized content.
2. Invest in SEO
In order to interact with your website, policyholders have to be able to find you. Considering 93 percent of online experiences begin with a search engine, you need to somehow get yourself to the top of the first search engine results page—most people won’t venture past the first three organic search results.
If you want to get your company on the first page of Google or other search engines, you need to invest in search engine optimization (SEO). There are more than 200 actual ranking factors, but in general:
- Your pages need optimized title tags and meta descriptions
- Your website needs to be secured (HTTPS vs. HTTP)
- Your website needs to be mobile-friendly
- You need to add schema markup
- Your webpages need to have quality content
- Your webpage content length needs to be on par with your competitors
- Your website needs to be fast
- You need plenty of social signals
- You need plenty of quality backlinks
- You need optimized images
3. Create a blog
You need a blog. Blogs not only help generate traffic to your website, but they also prove your authority on topics, build trust, and transform you from an insurance company into a universal insurance resource. Blog posts also play a critical role for consumers researching products and services—the average person consumes 11.4 pieces of content before making a purchasing decision, according to Forrester. Take a look at how much traffic our blog drives to our website:
That’s more than half a million new people we reached in the past 12 months.
Here, I’ll get you started with a few insurance blog topic ideas:
- Do I Need [Life/Liability/Property/Etc.] Insurance?
- 5 Insurance Policies Everyone Should Have
- The Ins and Outs of [Life/Auto/Liability/Etc.] Insurance
- The Millennial’s Guide to [Renter’s/Life] Insurance
- Biggest Misconceptions About [Life/Auto/Liability/Etc.] Insurance
- Factors You Didn’t Know Affect Your [Life/Auto/Liability/Etc.] Insurance Coverage
- If You’re In These Professions, You Need Liability Insurance
- Different Types of Insurance
- How to Find the Best Auto Insurance
- How Much [Health/Auto/Liability/Etc.] Insurance Do You Need?
- Your Insurance Cheat Sheet
- We’re De-Jargoning the Insurance Industry
- 10 Tips for Keeping Insurance Rates Low
- Where to Buy Alien Abduction Insurance
4. Invest in “deer-in-headlights” resources
Ah, the age-old “deer-in-headlights” response to things that are overwhelming. And, boy—insurance is overwhelming at first. It’s understandable—most minors are on their parent’s insurance well into their college years, and after that commonly comes the “I’m-20-something-and-invincible” phase. In TransUnion’s 2017 Healthcare Millennial Report, 57 percent of millennial consumers identified as having “no understanding” or a “limited understanding” of their insurance benefits, while 50 percent of Generation X and 42 percent of Baby Boomers said the same.
Cue the deer in headlights response.
So, make it simple:
- Don’t give them too many choices on your website’s main pages. Insurance is already overwhelming and having too many options can tip website visitors over the edge. Figure out what the most important things people need from you, and focus on those. Here, I’ll show you what I mean with this great design example from Liberty Mutual:
- Create a big, fat, “Insurance 101” resource or an interactive guide on your website
- Put a quote comparison tool on your website’s homepage, then promote the crap out of it with pay per click and social media ads
- Create short (read: under two minutes) videos that explain different types of insurance coverage and post them on your YouTube page (oh, yea—you need a YouTube page)
- Create an online quiz to help potential policyholders figure out exactly what it is they’re looking for
5. Utilize pay per click advertising
We established that you need SEO because you need to be at the top of the search results. However, not all search queries are created equal—some queries indicate low commercial intent and some indicate high commercial intent. For most high-commercial-intent searches, you’ll see the entire top half of the search results page is taken up by ads. Take a look at the difference in the search results when I search for “do I need renters insurance” vs. “buy renters insurance”:
When you look at it on mobile, the entire screen is taken up by ads, and since mobile web traffic has been outpacing desktop traffic, more and more people are clicking on paid ads. If you choose to use pay per click ads, make sure you sign up with a Google Premier Partner (like us). The insurance industry has the highest average cost per click, so if you don’t team up with someone who REALLY knows what they’re doing you will most likely waste money.
What should you advertise? Start with your competitive rates. About 70 percent of consumers say they look for the best deal when renewing an auto policy, and getting the best deal on any type of insurance is of paramount importance to today’s money-savvy policyholders.
Insurance Marketing Ideas to Differentiate You from Your Competitors
Once you’ve gotten their attention, you need to differentiate yourself from your competitors. The next step policyholders make after discovering possible insurance providers is the age-old comparison. The 2018 JD Power study shows that brand reputation is the factor most likely to drive customer consideration of an insurer. It contributes 29 percent, on average, of what influences an insurance shopper to research an insurer’s offerings. This may explain why the top 10 insurers, in terms of total market share, now write 72 percent of all business in the country, up from 64 percent in 2000.
So, how are you stacking up against your competitors? If they have a better online presence than you, you’re already behind—pick up the slack with these ideas to help you differentiate your company and convert new policyholders.
6 Communicate your brand through video marketing
Video marketing is THE thing. By 2019, video will account for 80 percent of global internet traffic, and 85 percent in the US. It’s not just for B2C, either—73 percent of B2B marketing professionals say that video has positively impacted marketing results. Below are a few video marketing ideas to get you started.
- Create how-to or informative videos – 86 percent of YouTube viewers say they often use YouTube to learn new things—so give them what they want. Teach them how to take care of their jewelry properly. Teach them how to find the best insurance rates. Teach them how to inspect their home’s foundation for cracks. The options are endless.
- Feature policyholder testimonials – The number one mistake most insurance companies make is being self-centered. Stop making videos about yourself. Nobody cares why you think you’re great—they care why your policyholders think you’re great. Communicate that with spotlight videos featuring policyholders you’ve helped. Communicate your brand values by showing them, not talking about them.
- Show your commitment to society – Social responsibility is expected from insurance companies, and your company is no exception.
7. Generate raving reviews
Approximately 84 percent of internet users value online reviews as much as recommendations from friends. If you don’t have a strategy to generate them, you need to create one—now. Here are a few ideas to get quick reviews:
- Ask for them—email your policyholders and simply ask them to leave a review
- Make it part of an ongoing process to check in on new policyholders
- Install review-generating software like Review Us Now
8. Highlight your differences in your content
Have you won awards? Show them on your front page. Do you have a staggering amount of rave reviews? Showcase them. Is your team the most caring team in the metro area? Post videos that prove it. Figure out what your target market’s pain points are, and actively head them off.
Insurance Marketing Ideas to Retain Existing Policyholders
Your job isn’t over after they sign the dotted line. Personally, I shop for insurance about every two years to see if I can get a better rate. I’m not unique. Especially now with how easy getting a quote has become, you really need to be actively convincing policyholders to stay with you, even if your rate is higher.
9. Create and use email marketing newsletters
If you’re not communicating with your policyholders on a regular basis, someone is taking your place. Email marketing is a great way to stay top-of-mind, enforce your brand, and inform policyholders of new and important updates. Today’s consumers are research-obsessed, so providing them with the information they crave is a guaranteed way to keep their attention.
Here are a few email marketing ideas for you:
- Create timely seasonal guides
- Run a referral contest
- Use email to set up annual renewals
- Send automatic follow-ups after a claim
- Monthly tips
- Warn consumers about trends that affect them
- Send educational tips and reminders
10. Be active on social media
A whopping 93 percent of insurance agencies report they have some sort of social marketing effort in place, but as many as 64 percent of them don’t measure the return on the investment (ROI) they’re receiving.
Big mistake. You can’t just randomly post on Facebook and expect your company to grow. You need to track everything, keep testing, tweak your campaigns, and repeat the process.
Yes, social media is beneficial for your company. No, it’s not going to land you tons of leads. That’s why I included it under “retaining existing policyholders.” By maintaining an active presence (and utilizing paid ads) you can stay top of mind and send subtle reminders about all the benefits you offer.
Need ideas? Here you go:
- Write tips on keeping insurance costs low
- Post infographics of the process
- Post 30-second how-to videos related to your industry (how to change a tire, how to get jewelry appraised, how to choose life insurance)
- Share customer stories
- Post about events
- Create a web series
11. Make your community efforts stand out
Almost half—43 percent, to be exact—of US adults don’t trust insurance companies.
Prove you aren’t a mindless money-grubbing robot by showing your community efforts and your caring side. Contribute to charity? Promote it. Doing a car seat installation class? Promote it. Got a great compliment from a client? Promote it.
You have the disadvantage of consumers mistrusting you from the getgo—head it off by showing your human side.
Where to Begin Your Insurance Marketing Plan
Start with a digital competitive analysis. A competitive analysis will find out what insurance marketing opportunities your competitors are taking advantage of and what’s necessary to beat them in the search engines and grow your company. With the best digital competitive analyses, you’ll also get a roadmap of the marketing channels that are the most important for your business.
Stop wasting your time on ineffective marketing strategies and start attracting and retaining more policyholders. If you need help, I’m only a phone call away.
About The Author: Betsy is the social media lead and a digital marketing expert with Blue Corona. When she’s not managing Blue Corona's digital content campaigns she’s urban exploring, hiking with her dog, or teaching horseback riding lessons. Twitter: @educatedbets
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