Many people these days wake up, grab their smartphone and check email. Some unlucky individuals may have upwards of 100 new email notifications fighting for their attention. Of those 100 emails, however, only a handful are actually opened and read — the rest are deleted. Why? Because the majority are normally a flurry of generic sales emails written to attract everyone and anyone, instead of a personalized message (which are typically much easier to spot amongst the spam).
A 2022 study conducted by Campaign Monitor found that average email open rates hover around 21.5%, with an average click-through rate of just 2.3%. These averages represent all industries, not just insurance — education-based emails from universities and children’s schools pull these open and click-through rates up significantly (28.5% and 4.4% respectively). These figures say a lot about how sales emails tend to be composed and marketed to the consuming public.
The question is: are the sales emails you’re sending to current or potential customers among that 21.5%, or are they among the ones that get tossed in the trash without a second thought? If you have any doubt that your marketing messages fall into the ladder, keep reading. The following advice will help you and your sales team craft emails that are not only read, but emails that will convert prospects into customers.
Customized & Personalized
If you want your emails to get opened, personalize them. This should be obvious, but what’s the best way to do it? There are many different tactics you can employ here. Try starting with subject lines. Use them to immediately capture the customer’s attention, perhaps by including their name in them. If you’ve delved into the art of influence at all, you know people love the sound of their own name, even in text!
For instance, a subject line like, “Hey Tom! Here’s the info you requested” is bound to capture the customer’s attention because it calls for it in a personalized way. If you know your customer is looking for specific information such as a renter’s insurance quote, the subject line could read, “[Last Name] renters insurance quote”. When the subject line is written with your customer in mind, they’ll be more likely to open it.
If you’re on a first-name basis with your clients, make use of that! If you’re sending automated messages, tweak them a bit to include at least one or two personal notes, like neighborhood, policy type, etc. Also, be sure to send all messages from a personal professional email such as firstname.lastname@example.org, instead of from a generic email account, like email@example.com.
Mass email blasts can be personalized as well. If your CRM doesn’t offer a feature to insert personalized merge fields like [First Name], [City], etc, we recommend searching around for videos on how to send personalized email mergers using an Excel doc and Word Mailings. An example of how this might look would be as follows:
Morning [First Name],
I’m following up with you regarding your [Policy Type] insurance policy inquiry from [Date of Inquiry]. I’ve reviewed your information and know I can offer excellent coverage that won’t break the bank. We are currently servicing hundreds of other happy customers in [Neighborhood], and would love to see what our trusted agency could do for you as well! You can use this link to easily find a time for a quick call that’s convenient to you.
Talk soon, [First Name]!
Notice how the salutation was specific to the time of day the email was being sent. This adds an extra touch of personality and gives the email a hand-written feel.
CoSchedule lists the top 100 words that increase email opens, which we’ve compiled below (highlighting words that are most relevant to insurance marketing emails), and recommend you use as frequently as possible:
|100 Words That Increase Email Subject Line Opens|
|24-Hour Giveaway||Expiring||News||Still Time|
|Advice||Freebie||On Orders Over||Tell|
|Available||FWD:||On Sales Now||Thanks|
|Back in Stock||Get this now||Orders Over||This|
|Better||Get Your||Painting||Today Only|
Limited-Time Offers & Discounts
Know what motivates customers? Offers that are only available for a short period of time. Why? We live in a world where immediacy rules our communications and motivations; People love to be “in the know”.
Everyone likes a bargain. Let’s be honest — there’s a slim chance your customers will turn down a discount if offered one. However, their inboxes are so saturated with “sales” emails that it can be difficult to distinguish your offers from all the others that flood their inbox. If you’re going to send out sales emails, make sure they offer value.
Here’s the most important thing to keep in mind if you plan on sending customers emails about discounts: don’t take advantage of their inbox. Only send out a “best sale of the year” email if it really is your best offer of the entire year. Otherwise, you’ll lose credibility and your emails will go from attracting attention to being ignored.
Personalizing your emails still plays a huge role here. Any retail company your prospect has EVER shopped from is sending sale/discount alerts to their inbox daily. Using the steps from the previous tip above will be incredibly important in upping your open and click-through rates. Here’s an example:
Afternoon [First Name],
I’m getting in touch regarding your [Policy Type] insurance policy inquiry from [Date of Inquiry]. You reached out to us at the perfect time! [Company Name] recently implemented impressive discounts on policies in [Neighborhood], and policy prices are the lowest I’ve seen all year. The best news is that, based on the info you shared with me, you qualify for multiple discounts! I’d love to see what kind of coverage our trusted agency could tailor for your individual needs. You can use this link to easily find a time for a quick call that’s convenient to you.
Talk soon, [First Name]!
Life is busy, and it’s easy to forget important dates. Your customers already have their hands full trying to remember birthdays, anniversaries, and other social engagements. You can’t expect them to remember exactly when their home, auto, boat, or motorcycle insurance policies expire, especially if the dates are scattered throughout the year.
You’ll be an all-star salesperson in no time if you take the effort to remind your clients when their policies are eligible for renewal. Give yourself bonus points if you can find a way to liven up these emails with interesting content, such as a short video or blog post that will entertain them.
There are so many opportunities to thank your insurance clients. The first is simple: every time you sell a policy to a new client, follow it up within a week with a personalized thank-you email. This lets your new customers know you appreciate their business. Don’t forget to include your contact information in these messages. Also, remind these new customers they shouldn’t hesitate to reach out to your personal line if they need anything while their policies are in force.
Don’t forget current clients as well! If at any point a customer contacts you to add an extra line of coverage, send him or her a letter of gratitude. Every year, when your customer renews their insurance policies, send them an anniversary thank-you as well (hand-written post-cards are also NEVER a bad idea). Finally, if a lead ever comes to you through a referral, take the time to thank the customer who sent that additional business your way.
You might even consider sending thank-you sales emails to customers who approach you about additional coverage but ultimately decide not to purchase it. Why? Letting your customers know you appreciate their business, even when a price tag isn’t attached to it, shows you value the relationship you’ve developed with them. They’ll be more likely to keep business ties with you because your show of gratitude. Plus, it will keep you on their mind for when they are ready to commit to policy changes.