Winning with Medicare Sales Using a Healthy Marketing Mix

You wear a lot of hats as an independent insurance agent (contracting, certifications, sales, customer service, etc.). We’re here to help you wear the all-important marketing hat! You know marketing is critical to generating sales and growing your business, but how can you get better, more consistent results from your efforts? The short answer is by using a healthy marketing mix. In today’s article, we address what a “healthy marketing mix” is, why you should implement one, and provide a current example of the dangers agents face when they fail to do so.

The concept of a “healthy marketing mix” refers to utilizing a number of different available avenues like traditional marketing, digital advertising and event promotion to attract customers. This approach is the alternative to putting all your eggs in one basket. A healthy marketing mix can include a combination of any or all of the following:

Traditional Advertising: includes television and radio, however, primarily refers to print media such as flyers, postcards, rack cards, ads in publications, etc.

Digital Presence: includes marketing on social media, an agent website, YouTube videos, etc.

Networking: includes marketing to friends & family as well as industry peers, senior living facilities, doctors’ offices, medical groups, etc.

Events: includes educational events, marketing events, customer appreciation events, etc.

Referral Program: includes efforts & materials designed specifically to generate referrals from existing customers and cross-promotional efforts with other insurance professionals, business owners, social workers, etc.

You don’t have to use all the marketing avenues listed here. Some agents aren’t keen on hosting events, for example, and that’s fine. The important thing to keep in mind is that there’s often some ebb and flow when marketing Medicare insurance – some marketing avenues outperform others one year, and the next year might see those results start to diminish as other marketing avenues pick up the slack. The key is calculating the return-on-investment for each medium you use and leveraging the performers against those delivering less than desirable results.

Case in point: direct mail is seeing lower-than-usual response rates this year throughout many parts of the country (despite seeing some recent improvements). Staffing issues at USPS spurred by the COVID-19 pandemic is the biggest reason why. Mail campaigns that usually see a 3-4% response rate in some cases produced response rates as low as .8%, particularly during the first quarter of 2021. That’s around a 75% decrease! So, if an agent were relying too heavily on direct mail to produce leads during this time, they likely saw a huge drop in inquiries and therefore written business. Whereas the agent that incorporates a healthy marketing mix likely paused their direct mail campaign efforts in order to focus on those marketing initiatives outperforming direct mail.

It’s one thing to have the content and materials for a healthy marketing mix in place, and it’s quite another to know how, when and where to use the content and materials effectively. Essentially, these marketing measures can only go so far without a sound strategy behind them. This is where having an NMO partner that has your success in mind can be a huge asset. We’re of the opinion that an ideal NMO partner isn’t merely the provider of great marketing content, they offer guidance on how to effectively use it too!

To summarize, utilizing a healthy marketing mix can generate more leads and a more consistent flow of leads. Underperforming marketing channels are often counteracted by different methods proving effective in that area at that time. In order to make the most of a healthy marketing mix, independent agents need to have a strategy in place. An agent’s NMO should be the first resource for help with producing a healthy marketing mix and in developing a strategy that maximizes the use of that mix.

As a National Marketing Organization that works with thousands of independent agents, we understand you must generate leads in order to grow your business. That’s why we work diligently to provide the resources necessary for successful marketing. If this information is valuable and you want to know more about the services we provide our Medicare agent partners, please contact us at marketing@berwickinsurance.com or 888-745-2320.

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