In working with and talking to agents all over the United States, one of the things I find all too frequently is that they have yet to embrace the need for a personally branded presence on the Internet
A quick mental survey of the agents I have talked to in the past 12 months brings to mind only one or two who understand the need for a professional, personally-branded website their customers and prospects can use as a reference tool and a point of entry for dealing with the agent.
In a recent consumer study, Northwestern Mutual found that over 50 percent of consumers of financial products want access to a robust website that enables them to get the product information they want online. This same survey reinforced what many agents think regarding personal service as well (54 percent wanted a person to talk to), but it highlights a key issue that agents should be aware of — a Web presence is something that one out of every two people you interact with demands.
One question that I hear in response to this kind of survey is, “why don't I just direct my clients to the carrier sites instead?”
Carrier sites provide seemingly limitless amounts of information, which is good for agents, but can be overwhelming for clients. When you offer a personal website
you can sift through the information and provide (or highlight) the most important and relevant items for your clients.
Most importantly, though, an agent needs to establish themselves as a brand in the minds of their clients and their prospects. The term brand is a horse that has been beaten beyond death and into horse jerky status, but it does have relevance for today's agent. If you, personally, exist in the minds of your buying audience as the insurance resource or the the annuity specialist, that will go a long way to creating a run rate business for you to rely upon.
Create a website
. It's not hard, and your clients and prospects will remember you better for it.