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Choosing the right leads for your life insurance business

Sep 6, 2019 5 Minute Read

A successful life insurance business depends on a steady flow of customers who are ready and able to buy. That’s why quality leads are everything. No matter how good you are at sales, your efforts will fall flat without the right prospects. So how can you connect with your ideal customers?

There are many lead sourcing options out there, but the quality of leads can vary widely. Understanding the differences between various types of leads can keep you from wasting time and money. Promising prospects not only help you build sales, but also boost morale across your team. The bottom line: When you have a good mix of quality leads, agents are happier and more productive.

Here’s a closer look at common lead generation strategies and how your business can build a healthier pipeline.

Common types of leads

Data Leads

Countless people request life insurance quotes each day, and your business can connect with them by buying lists of prospects who visited a particular website and requested additional information. While data leads are the most affordable, quality can be spotty since they haven’t been vetted by a professional. These leads are also incentivized in some cases, so customers may be more interested in the reward for filling out a form than seriously shopping for coverage. The other consideration before buying leads like this is whether they’re exclusive, which means you’re the only agent receiving them, or if they’re shared, which means other agents or agencies are competing for the same people. Shared leads typically cost less than exclusive leads, but also tend to have lower close rates.

Marketing Leads

If you’re an independent agency, you may be generating leads through your own marketing efforts, including your website, paid ads, and social media marketing. Some agencies also develop leads by reaching out to former customers and prospects, or through referrals from their networks. For example, if you have a good working relationship with a property and casualty agency, they may pass along customers who need life insurance. Building a strong in-house pipeline is important, but many agencies still need to find additional lead sources to stay profitable and competitive.

Warm Transfer Leads

These leads are the best of the bunch, since they’re people who are already on the phone ready to discuss their life insurance needs, not just a name on a spreadsheet. A life insurance partner like eIndependent makes the connection with the prospect, and then passes them along directly to you. When purchasing warm transfer leads, ask if the company prescreens prospects using basic eligibility information such as age, current health, and financial well-being before sending them your way. This is the ideal scenario: a live connection with an interested, qualified prospect. That’s why warm transfer leads tend to cost more, because they typically pay off in higher close rates.

5 things to consider when sourcing life insurance leads

Several factors can impact how likely a lead is to turn into a paying, in-force customer. Before you buy, some key questions to ask include:

Q:        Will these leads be shared with anyone else?

A:         Shared leads mean you’re competing with multiple agents for the same customer. On top of that, customers can become overwhelmed or frustrated when four or five agents are calling them, making them less likely to buy.

Q:        Are the leads incentivized?

A:         Some sites encourage people to request information about life insurance to get a gift card, enter a contest, or claim some other perk. While it might seem like an easy way to generate a lot of potential customers, these incentivized leads are very low quality. After all, the goal is to connect with people who are truly interested in life insurance, not the chance to win a free vacation.

Q:        How much do the leads cost?

A:         Cost is always important, but you get what you pay for with leads. Top producers typically spend anywhere from $2,500 to $3,500 a month on leads, so if your lead cost is suspiciously low, it could be a red flag that they’re poor quality. The other thing to keep in mind when calculating costs is your close rates. If the cost per lead is 50% higher, but you make a sale twice as often, it winds up being more cost-effective to spend more for quality leads.

Q:        Are my leads qualified to purchase life insurance?

A:         Data leads aren’t typically qualified beforehand, so you may find people with health issues, insufficient income, or other concerns that make them poor prospects for coverage. On the other hand, warm transfers are usually more promising because they’ve been pre-screened to meet the basic requirements for buying life insurance.

Q:        Am I collecting leads from multiple sources?

A:         Diversification is good, especially if you’re purchasing leads versus generating them yourself. Use a variety of sources (which you should carefully track) to be sure you get both the volume and quality of leads you need. If a particular source regularly provides better quality leads, you can increase your supply from them and scale back on sources that don’t result in sales.

Q:        Do I have permission to contact my leads?

A:         FCC regulations implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) require you to have prior express written consent to autodial or send pre-recorded messages to cell phones. This means you’re obligated to ensure the lead vendors you work with have the required consent and can provide you with a token to verify this for every lead. Buying leads that meet these standards not only helps to minimize the risk of penalties, but also typically means better lead quality.

Leads are the lifeblood for any insurance business, so having a steady stream of promising prospects is crucial. When leads aren’t qualified, agents and agencies wind up spending significantly time and resources trying to convert them to customers. Higher quality leads produce better results faster.

That’s what you can expect from eIndependent. We provide high quality pre-screened, live transfer leads, which is why our agents close an average of one out of every three sales. Get in touch to see how we can help grow your independent life insurance business – one lead at a time.

At eFinancial, our goal is to make life insurance simple, affordable, and understandable for everyday families. This content is intended for educational purposes only. Each post is carefully fact-checked, reviewed and updated regularly to ensure the information is as relevant as possible.