Extracting Referral Sources From Your Leads

This is a VERY important topic that I credit for the fast growth in my life insurance business over the last 6 months.

First off, let me explain that the best lead you can get is a referral.  No other lead will convert as well as a referral from a trusted source.

If you’re doing any sort of volume in internet leads, referral opportunities present themselves, you just need to be aware of them.

Many agents ask me where I get my referral sources and they’re surprised to hear that every single one of my referral sources has come from an internet lead.  Let me explain.

Every application has a story.  Some of those stories lead to other opportunities like referral sources.  I think the best way to describe this is through examples in my business:

Example #1
I took an application for someone with moderate Multiple Sclerosis.  They were previously declined by State Farm.  I asked my client what the State Farm agent suggested after the decline and the State Farm agent didn’t have anything to recommend so my client did her own research and found me.  I asked my client for that State Farm agent’s name/contact info so I can introduce myself as a high risk life insurance agent who can help her clients if they have any health issues.  My client, who was happy with her life insurance approval, was happy to give me this information.

I got in touch with the State Farm agent and mentioned her client (for auto and homeowners) and the State Farm agent didn’t even know it was possible to insure her.   I asked if I could work with her life insurance declines and she gladly obliged.  I receive a 1 or 2 inbound calls from her referrals every month.  These are people declined by State Farm where she tells them to call me.  I send her “thank you” gift cards for every policy I put in force to remind her of my services.  This all stemmed from a purchased internet life insurance lead.

Example #2
I took an application from someone who needed life insurance to secure an SBA loan.  This person needed $800,000 of coverage ASAP to get the money to start her flooring business.  She had just started an application with another agent who said it would take 4-6 weeks and wanted to know if I had anything quicker.  I did.  I put together an Assurity, Fidelity and Americo non-med term application to hit that $800k of coverage and had her good to go in 2 weeks.  Price didn’t matter for her.  She was VERY happy.

I helped her with the Collateral Assignment forms and asked for her lenders name/contact information to make sure everything was compliant (I knew it was, I just wanted to speak with him).   We a had a short conversation and I asked him for his referrals.  He was hesitant (still is hesitant) but refers me when his clients ask him for a life insurance recommendation – he says most of his clients have life insurance they can assign.  I had 2 referrals from him over the last year and both became clients.  I do have to constantly remind him with a monthly email drip.  Quick tip: I have the monthly emails go out to him and a few other SBA agents I’ve been in contact with.

So 1 lead has turned into 3 new clients and a referral source.

I can list other examples, but you get the point I’m making.

The Opportunity

Extracting referral sources is often overlooked when building your life insurance business with internet leads.

The more people you speak with, the more referral opportunities come your way.   However, you need to extract those referral opportunities.  They don’t just fall in your lap.

Any time you speak with a prospect who mentions working with another professional, you need to get that name.  It could be a fee only financial planner, estate planning attorney, divorce attorney, CPA, loan officer, equipment financing representative, structured settlement broker, P/C agent and many others.

Having common ground with these professionals is key in establishing the relationship.  You’re working with their client on something they recommended or required.  Since their client found you via an internet lead, it’s obvious they don’t have a referral relationship already.

Don’t ask for their referrals until you have a policy in force and a raving fan (your client).  Just work with both of them professionally and when everything is in force, follow up and ask for their referrals.

These opportunities will come and most likely already have if you think back on some of your clients…you just need to be aware of them.

Keep in mind, there are referral sources that can quickly become your main income stream.  The referral source I refer to in my “Sales Challenge” (Click Sales Challenge under categories) sends me 25+ referrals every month!

Building your referral sources is the fastest way to get off the internet lead nipple.  Land a good referral source (or a bunch of small referral sources) and kiss the lead companies goodbye.

Maximize the profitability of your leads by extracting referral sources.  Trust me, it works.