Cross selling in insurance is one of the best ways to scale your business. Think about it: you have a certain number of clients who trust you for at least one very important piece of their financial life. The key word here is trust.
If they trust you and know that you have their best interests at heart, they are going to be willing to trust other recommendations you make. I wrote a whole blog post on “The Art of the Insurance Cross Sell.”
One of the keys here is that your client trusts you and that you make appropriate recommendations that solve a problem they have. This strategy will not be successful if you are just slinging new products at your clients around renewal. Be intentional and use an effective cross selling strategy.
Understanding Customer Needs
Cross selling strategies in insurance start with deeply understanding your clients and their needs. You must know what problems they face and how they are currently able to solve them. If they don’t have a good solution today, there is probably a good opportunity for you to make a recommendation. Just make sure it is relevant to their current situation.
I have a couple favorite ways to do this:
- Survey a group of your target prospects. Surveying is a great way to get in front of them in a non-sales environment and ask them some questions to better understand the problems they face.
- Ask your current clients good, open-ended questions. Quality questions create dialogue that will enable you to learn more about your clients than you ever would have imagined.
Once you better understand your clients and prospects, one of the most effective (and maybe the most obvious) cross selling strategies in insurance is to personalize your recommendations. At least make your client feel like you personalized the recommendation because you recommend a product.
Even though you already know what most of your target prospects and clients need, that doesn’t mean they all need it at the same time. Use timeliness as a personalization strategy with the recommendations you make to them. Many agents will only offer new products to clients when they are going through the renewal process, because that’s the only time of year they really talk to the client. That often feels disingenuous to the client – because it is.
The better cross-selling strategy in insurance is to be in regular communication with your client and find times when it’s natural to bring up a conversation about a new product. A simple example might be when a client has a baby. You’ll congratulate them, be genuine, and discuss if it’s time to think about life insurance due to the change in their life.
Simply put: Don’t make recommendations when it is convenient for you. Make personalized recommendations when it makes sense for your client’s situation.
Building Trust and Rapport
I hesitate to even mention this, because it should be obvious. However, it is vital, so let’s discuss it for a moment.
Trust. It’s the foundation of what cross selling strategies in insurance are built on. If your client doesn’t trust you, they aren’t going to believe you’re genuine in your recommendation.
The good news is that if your client is already buying from you, they have some level of trust in what you are doing for them. Don’t overestimate it, but it is there. The best agents are intentional about the trust they build. They do it through relationships. The better relationship you have with your client, the more they will trust you. Follow through on what you say you’re going to do. Don’t overpromise and underdeliver. Ever.
Tracking and Measuring Success
How do you know if your cross-selling strategies are working? Are you getting an ROI on your efforts? There is only one way to answer this: Track your activity and results.
You have to spend the time tracking your activity so you know what’s working and what’s not. Too often, we tend to rely on our gut to tell us what is working, when in reality, our gut is not all that accurate.
One of the best methods to figure out what activity leads to results is to utilize A/B split testing. If you aren’t familiar with A/B split testing, Hubspot covers it in-depth on the marketing side: How to do A/B Testing: 15 Steps for the Perfect Split Test.
If you aren’t tracking and measuring your success, you won’t make the progress you want. I know that it is tedious and not the most sexy activity in sales, but if you are going to optimize your cross-selling strategies in insurance, you need to put in the work and track your activity!
The Bottom Line
Cross selling is a powerful strategy for scaling your business, but it requires trust and appropriate recommendations.
- Understand your clients’ needs and problems.
- Survey prospects and have open-ended conversations to gain valuable insights.
- Personalize recommendations based on their unique situations and avoid the disingenuous approach of only offering products during renewal.
- Build trust through strong relationships and deliver on promises.
- Track and measure success to allow for optimization.
Remember, putting in the work and tracking your activity is essential for effective cross selling strategies in insurance. Trust, personalize, understand, and measure – these are the pillars of a successful cross selling strategy in insurance.