This really works!
Working well with realtors and lenders has always been one of the best sources of insurance leads for agents. Doing this well is definitely still part of being a Modern Insurance Agent!
Firefly Agent Evan Gibson of Gibson Insurance Solutions sat down with Sam Nudelman to discuss how he has developed relationships with mortgage lenders and realtors, partnering with about 10-15 referral partners who send him leads each month.
The interview below is a must-watch!
At the time of recording, Evan had been with Firefly less than 2 years. He is a solo agency with 426 clients, of which 375 have homeowners, condo, or dwelling fire insurance with him.
Evan’s Process for Getting Referral Partners
- Step 1: Create your why.
- What is your value ad? Why should they refer business to you? Check out this article for some ideas.
- Create a resource or resources that you can provide to your referral partners, like Evan’s “Loan Officer WHY” document.
- Step 2: Identify referral partners you want to work with.
- Find local ones or ones in your state via a Google search.
- Check out LinkedIn, and even try out LinkedIn Pro’s free 30 day free trial and use Sales Navigator to identify local referral partners by sorting for “job” or “company”.
- Reach out to friends on social media who you know in that field, or reach out to friends asking them to connect you with someone in that field.
- Step 3: Create a program whereby your referral partner is rewarded, like Evan’s “Buyer Reward” program.
- That can help your referral partner to receive benefit from the relationship, rather than it being one sided.
- Step 4: Reach out to your potential referral partners.
- Email, phone, text, in person, and connecting on social media.
- If you’re potential referral partner is on social, like and engage with their content there.
- Identify your referral partners pain points and needs.
- Cater your “Why” document to each referral partners. Show how you can address their specific needs.
- Email, phone, text, in person, and connecting on social media.
- Step 5: Manage the relationship closely.
- Reach out to referral partners regularly to encourage them to send you leads and to thank them when they do.
- If you are out of sight, you are out of mind and your lender and realtors won’t refer you to anyone.
- Step 6: Keep the referral partner updated about the people they’ve referred to you.
- Being connected to the client via a warm phone transfer, or via an email with the referred can help bring credibility.
- Evan uses this example email script below when he gets connected with a loan officer referral
Congrats on the new contract on your home! Like [input lender’s name] mentioned, I work in conjunction with him and [input loan processor’s name, if available] on your loan in order to get the proper homeowners insurance in place. I have included all the info below for us to get started finding you the best value on insurance for your new home.
To make it simple for you, all I’ll need for quoting is: [send something like the below or some iteration of it within the email, you can include a short one page quote collection form instead, or send them to the consumer quoting portal link in EZLynx.]
-The address of the new home:
-What year was the current roof put on the home?
-Any other updates to the home in the last 10 years such as new plumbing, HVAC, etc?
-Are there children on premises?
-Are there dogs on premises? If so what breed, and do they have a bite history?
-Names and birthdates of all those to be listed on the mortgage, including your spouse (if applicable) even if they are not on the loan:
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SAVE EXTRA MONEY AND HAVE YOUR HOME AND AUTO IN THE SAME PLACE, PLEASE FILL OUT BELOW INFO FOR BUNDLING:
-The legal names and birthdates of every driver in the home:
-Driver’s License numbers of all drivers:
-Your current auto and home insurance declarations pages OR VIN numbers, coverage, and pricing details:
I look forward to working with you!
(Input your Email Signature)
When the new policy is sold, make sure to follow through on the referral program you’ve created, thank the referral partner, and don’t hesitate to ask if they need help with their next client.
Download the Referral Partner Dashboard
Working with referral partners like realtors and lenders is a great way to grow your business, so we created a spreadsheet that can help you track your interaction with referral sources themselves, and see what results you’re getting from each person.
With this tool you can:
- Track your contact information for all lead sources.
- Track the last time you made contact with each of your referral partners.
- See how many referrals each partner has given to.
- See how much premium you’ve written from each referral partner.
- Remind yourself to follow up each referral with a thank you contact.
Download the Referral Partner Dashboard Spreadsheet: Excel format
The short video below is to help you make the most of a few features of the Referral Partner Dashboard spreadsheet. Some of the columns may change over time, but the tips here should always apply.
Don’t have Excel? At the end I’ll show you how you can use this tool for free with Excel online.
A Final Tip
Everything you say and do with a referred person affects the way the person feels about the lender or realtor who referred them. If you want people to feel comfortable referring their customers to you, you need to assure them that the referred person will have a positive experience with you – whether or not they end up insuring with you.
This cannot be over-emphasized.
Imagine how embarrassed someone would feel about giving out your name if you don’t follow up promptly with their customer. Or if you were too pushy, or your communication was unprofessional.
Then imagine how impressed and grateful someone would be if their customer said to them, “I didn’t end up getting my insurance through the person you referred. But they were friendly, helpful, and good to work with!”
You could tell your referral partner something like this:
“Whether or not your customer chooses in insure with me, I promise they will come away saying to you that they had a good experience.”
Webinar Video Recording
We had a great webinar on this topic with our Firefly agents, as part of our Modern Agent program. Agents had lots of good questions, which are included in this recording of the session:
Still on the fence about joining Firefly as an independent agent? Get more of your questions answered in our ebook designed for aspiring agents like yourself.