Most insurance companies do all they can to attract new clients. However, in reality, acquiring new customers is far more costly than retaining current ones. Some research indicates that retention of existing clients is five times cheaper than the conversion of new leads – and it’s only logical to assume that better customer retention means higher profits.
It’s easy to see why this is the case – a dramatic increase in profits happens when existing customers that become loyal to their insurance companies start purchasing additional insurance products. However, that can only happen if they’re happy with their customer experience – making retention a crucial part of any insurance agency’s work.
Also, it’s important to remember the power of word-of-mouth referrals – the world of digital marketing and communication has only heightened the importance of a positive “buzz” generated by the testimonials and experiences shared by existing customers.
In short, happy customers are ready and willing to share their positive experiences with their social circles – but the same is just as true, and sometimes even more so for unhappy customers. So, ensuring policyholders stay loyal to your agency is not only lucrative but essential.
Understand Why it's Hard
Unfortunately, maintaining policyholder loyalty is not as easy as it once was. In an age of constant online advertising by competition and competitive pricing, keeping your existing clients happy is less straightforward than it used to be.
Sure, giving policyholders better prices than the competition is an obvious solution – after all, everyone wants their insurance to be as affordable as possible. But in practice, that’s a far cry from being enough to ensure brand loyalty in the long run.
If you set your insurance agency as the place where people only go for the prices, you make losing policyholders inevitable down the road – there will always be someone who can match your price or even offer something cheaper; if not right now, then eventually.
So, if prices alone aren’t enough to keep people, where does that leave you?
Due to the global nature of today’s economy – more companies are vying for the same target audience than ever before in just about every sector and industry. However, that also means there are more subpar competitors than ever – companies whose main value lies in their alluring advertising, with little to entice customers “beneath the hood.”
As a result, customers are looking past prices, and they’re starting to value the overall customer experience more and more. In fact, some studies show that the customer experience has already overtaken price as the main deciding factor when choosing service providers.
This clearly tells us that the only real way to cement your policyholders’ loyalty is to provide them with a continuously enjoyable customer experience – but how are you supposed to do that in practice?
Learn More About the Customer
To please your policyholders in the long run, you need to know what they want. And to do that, you need to know "them". In other words, you should always try to find out everything you can about your clients, their families and their lives.
Your agents should address them with their preferred name and all the offers they receive should be relevant to their life situation and age. In fact, you’d be surprised how much just remembering a birthday can do to preserve customer loyalty.
These days, an entire industry has sprung up around companies that safely store and gather customer information and help you facilitate special birthday offers and small gift packages. That’s why the world’s gift certificate market was worth around $300 billion at the onset of the pandemic.
Plus, knowing more about your prospects and customers allows you to do more than send a small celebration token – you could track events that could increase their demand for insurance and stay abreast of any religious celebrations or specific cultural issues and phenomena.
We’re talking about an immense scope here. For instance, a client whose child is celebrating their 17th birthday will probably be more likely to add another driver to their existing car insurance. And someone who frequently travels abroad would likely be interested in annual holiday coverage. This kind of cross-selling is the bread and butter of any successful insurance agency.
Many customers will become more loyal to you if they feel like their insurance provider understands and knows them – sometimes suggesting services before they even realize they need them.
Ask for Feedback
Detailed customer records are one thing – but constantly asking for feedback from your customers is another, and both are equally important. If you want to keep your clients happy with their insurance services, you need to know if they’re actually happy first. That’s why emailing or calling policyholders and asking them for reviews and feedback is a great way to ensure their happiness in the long run.
Don’t wait for customers to complain if they’re feeling something isn’t right – be proactive about feedback. In practice, many clients would rather just leave the company and find another insurance provider; they just don’t want to bother voicing their concerns without being asked to.
Provide Great Customer Service
Unfortunately, a large number of consumers switch providers even when that turn of events was perfectly avoidable. That’s because these dissatisfied customers aren’t retained with timely and satisfactory intervention by customer service.
With that in mind, you need to ensure that your clients can access customer support easily and quickly; if it’s a hassle, they’ll be just as likely to switch providers after an initial annoyance. Also, when they do come in touch with your customer service employees, ensure that the latter are eloquent, polite, and well-equipped to handle problems with appropriate resolutions.
If your support staff isn’t great at solving practical problems, customers will walk – it’s that simple.
Increase Retention with Additional Policies
Understandably, policyholders are more likely to purchase an additional policy if they already have one with your company. Otherwise, they’d need to go through the arduous process of researching the competition and finding the right providers all over again; at a certain point, convenience prevails.
That’s why you need to use all available information on your customers to provide them with tailor-made offers that are right for their lifestyles; business insurance, life insurance, home insurance, car insurance, you name it.
Plenty of companies also offer discounts for premiums on multiple policies; if it’s an option for you, it’s a great incentive for customers who were already on the fence about signing up for another policy.
Have an Accessible Website
This is a no-brainer – most of us find most of our products and service providers online these days. In fact, your agency’s website is more than a digital billboard; it’s the first impression many customers will have of your company. So, ensure it’s easy to navigate, well-designed, fast, and convenient.
Have a Smooth Claims Process
Insurance companies and customers have one thing in common – in most cases, both parties hope that customers won’t have to make a claim. However, seeing as that process is one of the pillars of your customer experience, you should ensure it’s smooth and painless. The less hassle, the more likely you are to keep them.
To test this theory, try being your client for once. Go through the quoting and enrolling process, add on or delete plans - basically walk a mile in their shoes. If the shoes hurt your feet, they will most certainly hurt theirs.
Combining all these practices will no doubt increase your customer’s loyalty. An all in one CRM can assist you with all of these practices. Interested in learning more of how AgentCubed can help you? Try AgentCubed today!