Although he’s only been in the insurance industry for a year, Transamerica Agent Adrian Harris knows the importance of never giving up on a good lead.Thanks to our unique commitment to quality, agent support, and value-driven service, Precise has been able to build strong, long-term relationships with leaders and innovators throughout the insurance industry. In our Precise Spotlight series, we want to showcase some of these outstanding partners for our readers. Whether you’re a seasoned professional or an up-and-coming agent, we hope that their wealth of experience and sustained successes will guide you as you work to realize your own business goals.
For our latest installment, we spoke with Adrian Harris, who kicked off 2018 with a major achievement by qualifying for his Baltimore East office’s “Fast Start” award after submitting more than $13,500 in premiums between December 26th, 2017 and January 31st, 2018. Here’s Adrian on how he works his territory and generates consistent results in and around his hometown of Edgewood, Maryland.
PL: Can you give us some background on yourself: Where you are from originally, how you got started in insurance, and the path of your career up to this point?
H: Believe it or not, I hadn’t thought about a career in insurance before I started working it. My agent at the time just kept begging me (in a nice way) to join his team because he thought that I’d be good fit for his company. When he first asked, though, I wasn’t in a position to consider it. My mother was disabled and I was taking care of her, so I didn’t really have time for my career at the time, let alone to change it. Two months after her passing, my agent reached out to me again and this time, I gave it some more thought. Eventually, I got my license and Transamerica hired me. My first day with Transamerica was April 24, 2017. In fact, I’m technically still a rookie.
PL: In your experience, how has the rise of internet technology — mobile, social media, internet search — changed your insurance sales and marketing tactics?
H: The internet has completely changed insurance by giving agents so many more options. We use every method we can, whether it’s a high-tech system or something as simple as snail mail. The only challenge is keeping up with leads from so many sources, but if you’re listening to the right people, you can pretty easily sift out the best options. At the same time, I still try to take a time-honored approach to the job and drive home the importance of life insurance with every lead, regardless of where I’m talking to them.
PL: What tactics did you use before you partnered with Precise?
Harris: I started with a book of business handed to me from an agent who had just left, but I soon realized that a handful of legacy clients and personal connections will only get you so far in insurance. I needed another well to draw from.
PL: What made you decide to purchase internet leads? I understand the book of the business can only go so far, but what else was the trigger?
H: It’s simple: I wasn’t getting much from traditional sources. I’d talk to my friends, of course, but nearly all of my friends already had all the coverage they needed. I play baseball in a local league, so I started asking my teammates--and even the players on the opposing teams--if they need insurance, but once again, that proved to be a dead end. I took it upon myself to do some research and came to the conclusion that internet leads were going to be my primary source for new business. Another agent in the office was having success purchasing leads at the time, so I started to look into some lead providers myself. That led me to Precise. After I talked with Michelle Tackett over the phone, I decided you guys were the right fit for me. I haven’t looked back since.
PL: What is it about Precise that has motivated you to stay a customer?
H: The leads work. That’s the bottom line. It’s really helped me find my audience. I used to change my target demographics every now and then to find customers. I started with all ages and tweaked that a few times until I found the right audience. Now, I can generally stay within the same zip codes, which simplifies scheduling. I try to meet or speak with people in the same area on the same day so I don’t have to go across town on the same day. I’ve stayed within the counties around me, and so far I’ve had great success. Even if I don’t sell a policy, that conversation can still lead to a referral or potentially new business further down the road.
PL: Tell us about any notable successes and the positive impact of partnering with Precise?
H: One of my clients that originally started out as an internet lead really encapsulates what Precise has done for me. When I first started working with him and his family, none of them had insurance. At first, it was difficult to convince them to purchase coverage, but after two relatives died suddenly, I got a call from his wife and she and her three children signed up on the spot. The husband is still holding out, but I think I can get him to come around.
What I’ve learned from working with this family is that you can’t give up on leads. You can’t give up on anyone. That’s a mistake new agents make — they give up too easily. I keep every single lead I’ve gotten from Precise, even if they tell me no. I won’t keep reaching out if they’ve asked me not to call anymore, of course, but everybody else is fair game. In fact, I just checked in on a few leads from last July this morning to see if they still needed insurance. One woman said no, but she added that she’d talk to her husband in the evening and refer me if he did. That right there’s an opportunity I wouldn’t have had if I hadn’t stuck with it.
PL: Any advice to agents considering purchasing leads — how many, when should they purchase leads, the boost to ROI, how to close more deals?
H: While I don’t think there’s a one-size-fits-all approach, my main advice is to never give up. Keep at it. You have to be persistent. You obviously can’t be a pest, but if you go into a meeting with the idea that you’re trying to protect a prospect and their family, you’ll come across as genuine, and that will encourage people to buy a policy, refer you, or just keep you in mind. Just remember to make that clear in every call, email and meeting — that’s where your ROI is going to come from.
A big thank you to Adrian for taking the time to sit down with Precise and share his experiences as an insurance agent! We truly appreciate his partnership and contribution to the Spotlight series. Be sure to keep an eye out for more stories of hard work, opportunity, and success from Precise agents.