We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: if you want to grow your book of business, the first place to look is your current roster of clients. Focusing on your existing book strengthens your relationships, resulting in higher loyalty and retention.
Your value is your expertise in protecting your client’s business, their employees, and their assets. If you don’t holistically address all their needs, you leave space for a competitor to. If the only time you connect is at Open Enrollment and renewal, your client relationship is at risk.
Here are a few helpful tips to improve your cross-selling, along with a few examples:
1. Analyze and segment your book: Tag clients by industry, geography, WSEs, current product portfolio, and by complementary prospective coverages that might be right for each account. This will help you target email correspondence and be ready for cross-sell conversations during scheduled meetings or incoming client service requests.
2. Communicate frequently and on multiple channels: Market your products and services regularly, both in the aggregate and focusing on specific products. Your clients don’t live in the health insurance or employee benefits space – they may not be aware of additional products or services you offer that could be beneficial to their business or to their employees – unless you tell them! Educate about new trends on social media, in email outreach and on webinars. Make your content useful, relevant, and informative. You can also run campaigns around specific products or during timely events of the year, like during Open Enrollment, or target messaging to coincide with recent news and events. Read >> 3 Tips for a Successful Open Enrollment Season.
3. Cross sell on your website: Every page should link to related products and include call-out boxes or short descriptions about why and how these products are related. Every blog or article should include links to related content on your website, such as case studies, success stories, or eBooks. Amazon tells us that “customers who bought X also bought Y.” Tell your clients that “people in your industry who have X challenges also partner with PEO to solve Y problem – learn why.”
4. Meet and contact your clients often: Build in touchpoints. Follow them and interact on social media. Put them on your blog notification and email list. Make quarterly check-in calls. Conduct post-sale satisfaction surveys at mid-year. Conduct annual reviews. As long as you’re truly providing them with value, there are always opportunities to deepen the relationship and discuss or suggest supplementary services.
5. Up your email campaign game: Make sure your current clients are on your email list and signed up for your blog. Use list segmentation to target periodic campaigns that are pertinent to their interests and industry vertical. Include calls-to-action such as “click for a quote” and “call for more information.” Look into automated email platforms that allow you to conduct drip campaigns with both prospects and clients. See >> 5 types of B2B email drip campaigns that deliver results.
6. Find trusted partners for products you don’t sell: Property and casualty insurance. Risk insurance. You may be able to white label services or products so that you maintain your brand and agency as the front room. The most successful brokers are the ones who realize they can’t do it all on their own, but partnerships can help you be a one-stop shop for any related products your clients may need. Watch >> Securing Additional Revenue from Your Book of Business.
7. Prospect during the sale: When gathering information during your initial call or meeting, make sure you ask additional questions about your client’s short-and-long term benefits needs. Understanding their pain points, challenges, and circumstances can help you determine what additional products and services to offer in the future. For example, if you find most of your client’s WSEs are approaching or categorized as Baby Boomers, you can recommend a solution with a strong focus on traditional benefits like medical, dental, and life insurance, as opposed to a package with services that are more attractive to a younger generation, like student loan forgiveness or pet insurance.
8. Educate clients to think about business or life changes: These events should trigger employee benefits, such as acquisitions, geographic expansions, significant increases or decreases in payroll, new equipment, and the like. Issue “critical event” checklists periodically as reminders and prior to annual reviews. Educating your clients about notification triggers will help you to identify any necessary changes, as well as any exposures that could benefit by offering additional services.
9. Talk less, listen more: Cross-selling your products can come down to simply listening. Your clients may drop an offhanded or casual comment that inadvertently ties directly into another product and opportunity to sell.
10. Create bundles: As a benefits advisor or broker, you’re likely familiar with this tactic. If not, bundling is a great way for agencies to group together complementary solutions or products that a customer or prospect may likely purchase together. This is an easy and convenient way for your client to buy multiple items in one purchase.
“Would you like fries with that?”
Even the most veteran closers have fallen victim to this famous cross-sell tactic. Training employees to ask if a customer wanted to add fries with their order provided an opportunity for the customer to say yes. It seems simple, but brokers can use this same logic to help increase your portfolio, boost your book of business, and strengthen your client relationships.
Contact our Broker Sales Managers for more cross-selling and retention strategies.