5 Networking Tips Every New Insurance Agent Should Know
July 25, 2018
Networking within your local community is a continuous part of being an insurance agent no matter how long you’ve been in the industry, but it’s especially important for new agents. To start your business off with a larger base of potential clients, Farm Bureau will provide you with additional education and training, marketing materials and professional networking tips to get your name out in the community and convince your prospects to choose you for their insurance needs.
1. Have an Online Presence
Making connections on social media is an easy way to get to know your current clients and find new prospects that are connected with your friends. It’s less formal than asking someone to get to know you through a quick meeting, so people are more likely to accept a friend request than an invitation to a face-to-face insurance meeting. We usually recommend that our new agents follow a few social media best practices:
- Create a professional social media profile. As an insurance agent, it’s best to create a business profile page for Facebook. This helps keep your personal and professional pages separate. Plus, when someone follows your business page, they can expect insurance industry-related posts and engage with them.
- Share helpful information & tips. Providing your followers with helpful content will keep them engaged with your profile. Farm Bureau provides plenty of marketing tools and materials, but not all of your social posts need to be about your insurance business. It’s best to add variety to your feed, so be sure to include posts about events or activities coming up in the community, local clubs or volunteer work you’re involved in or other things you’re passionate about. People want to see the person behind the insurance agent, and your social media platforms are a great place to show them!
- Take advantage of online groups. Utilizing the communities on Facebook or LinkedIn is an effective way to connect with new people who have similar interests to you and network with people who could become a new prospect. In fact, we recommend the Insurance Professionals group on LinkedIn to keep agents in-the-know on industry updates.
If you abide by these simple guidelines you’re sure to see success online. For more information, check out our blog, How to Utilize Social Media to Grow Your Business.
Along with creating agent profiles on social media, Farm Bureau encourages new agents to create a personal website that will help bring in new leads without much effort from the agent. Oftentimes people will search online to learn more about the insurance they need, so it’s important to include helpful information about the different policies you offer on your website. Additionally, it’s essential to give visitors an easy way to contact you when they have questions or decide which type of insurance works best for their situation. The most important information to include on your website that will help you stand out online would be:
- Your elevator pitch
- A blog with helpful Farm Bureau articles
- Real-life success stories
- Testimonials from current client/members
- Contact information and office details
2. Attend Conferences and Industry Events
Farm Bureau firmly believes in ongoing training for their insurance agents, and strongly encourages agents to find new educational resources besides the advanced training that Farm Bureau has to offer. As we mentioned in the social media section, joining LinkedIn groups is a great way to stay in-the-know about what’s going on in the industry and if there are any learning opportunities available.
3. Focus on Your Relationships
One of the most important things to remember when you become an insurance agent is that your job is to help people in your community protect what matters most to them. We hope that’s why you decided to become an insurance agent in the first place and that you always strive to propose policies that offer the most protection to fit your clients’ lifestyles.
When you’re getting to know a potential client always think about what you can do to assist them in the future. All Farm Bureau agents should take the time to get to know their clients’ unique situations because learning about their needs and what is most important in their lives will be instrumental in guiding them to the correct products. This sets you both up for a strong foundation that shows you genuinely care about their well-being.
4. Be Active in Your Community
Taking time out of your busy schedule to volunteer within your community shows how much you care and want to improve your neighborhood. If you’re already part of a local organization, volunteer for a leadership position to grow positive name recognition among community members. As a bonus, you’ll also hone your communication and leadership skills, which can take you far as an insurance agent.
If you’re not sure where to start getting involved in your neighborhood, consider your interests, how you’d like to spend your free time or something that will enhance a skill you could work on. Many insurance agents choose to be involved in the community by coaching a local sports team, volunteering regularly for a nonprofit or running for city council, but you can also think outside the box and brainstorm an idea that works best for you!
If you can’t find the time to volunteer at a nonprofit or you’d still like to do more for your neighborhood, make it part of your business model to donate to a local charity. Besides nonprofits, there are plenty of other community events you could support with a donation. Consider sponsoring a local festival, a little league team, school events or other community activities to get your name in the public eye.
5. Buy Local
Choosing to purchase supplies or materials you need from local businesses supports the community’s economy and may even prompt business owners to work with you in the future. By choosing to keep things local, you’ll also build your reputation in the community by supporting the businesses and people around you.
Build Your Network With Farm Bureau by Your Side
Get to know our team a little better, and we’ll help you grow your insurance business. Sign up for our Agent Development Program if you’re ready to build the skills you already possess and learn more about the skills you need to become a successful insurance agent. Click “Get Started” to see what you can accomplish with Farm Bureau today!