Cold calling can sometimes feel like a grind for new agents, but it is essential to your insurance agency’s success. After all, insurance sales feed off of relationships, and cold calling is a launchpad for those relationships that will ultimately grow into long-term business.
Luckily, the better your agents become at cold calling, the more people your agency will reach and the higher your potential will be for increased sales.
Wondering how to help your agents master cold calling? In this article, we pin down how you can encourage better cold calling at your agency and boost sales.
What Are the Advantages of Perfecting Cold Calling?
Helping your agents perfect cold calling might seem like a waste of time. In reality, improving cold calling is a fundamental way to lift an agency’s sales. Here are a few of the biggest advantages of cold calling:
- It lowers costs: Cold calling is an investment in sweat equity. By investing time into improving cold calling, you’re building a machine that will eventually be programmed to churn out more sales. Even though that may take some work upfront, it pays off in higher sales in the long run.
- It saves time: Although it may seem like your agents are spending extra time mastering cold calling early on, they are honing a skill that saves time later. The better your agents become at closing cold calls, the less time your agency will spend scrambling to reach prospects through less effective tactics.
- It lifts brand awareness: Even if cold calls aren’t converting prospects right away, they still paint your agency’s brand on the minds of everyone your agents call. In turn, your brand becomes more familiar and the public starts trusting your agency more.
- It creates deeper relationships: If your agents are cold calling effectively, it can carve out relationships that inspire long-term business and profitable policy sales.
With those advantages in mind, here are some ways to encourage cold calling and inspire more insurance sales:
Set Clear and Concise Goals
If you want to make meaningful progress and see cold calling produce insurance sales, it is essential to set clear and concise goals. Start by nailing down your agents’ current call-to-conversion rate. Next, determine how many sales you want your agent to pull out of a batch of calls. From there, you can set annual goals.
For instance, maybe you realize it takes 30 calls for your agent to close one sale, but you want to increase that conversion rate to five sales per 30 calls. In this case, you can multiply the number of transactions you want to close in that period by 30. From there, divide that number by the number of months that are left in the year. Then divide by the number of days in a month. With that, you’ll set a goal for per-day calls and solidify a plan to boost cold calling conversions.
Give Agents a Script
Want an easy way to embolden your agents and help them convert more cold call sales? Give them a cold calling script. Here are some things to keep in mind when using scripts to coach agents:
- Lay out when to use a script: You won’t want to tie your agent’s hands by forcing them to follow a script word-for-word all the time. However, simply mapping out a script for them can help them stay focused and push the conversation in the right direction. Scripts can also drive a uniform voice across your agency and help your agents avoid stumbling over language.
- Explain when not to use a script: It is also important to help agents understand when not to use a script. Encourage agents to treat scripts as a guide rather than a word-for-word reading. This will help them stay flexible, adjust to objections, and avoid robotic pitches.
Carve Out Time to Prepare and Focus
If you want agents to become cold calling masters, you need to help them make cold calling a priority. How? Start by carving out time and designating it specifically to cold call preparation.
Similar to the way you would block off calendar events for meetings, help agents set aside chunks of time to go over cold calling scripts, dig into techniques, and focus. Beyond giving your agents time to prepare, be sure to designate time for the calls themselves, as well as a few minutes to let the agent reflect on what worked and what didn’t.
Practice Cold Calling With Your New Agents
Cold calling is a skill, and that means it requires practice before most agents will really take off. By setting up practice sessions with new agents, you can sharpen those cold calling skills and boost sales.
One of the best ways to quickly grow cold calling skills is to set up mock calls and practice with agents one-on-one. Another trick is to work with the most common objections potential clients have during a call and lay out ways for overcoming those objections.
Build Out Incentives
Positive incentives are a well-known tool for motivating employees, and incentivizing better cold calling can naturally encourage new agents to embrace the process. Here are a few incentives to consider:
- Hand out prizes for improving cold calling rates
- Give agents regular public praise for wins
- Pair up new agents with veterans on calls
- Create office-wide cold calling competitions
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