Saratoga Race CourseOn the heels of thoroughbred racing’s Triple Crown, I needed a way to explain how and why the SEO methodology we leverage produces such compelling results.  I needed an analogy my friend would understand, so I quickly created the Search Engine Optimization Triple Crown.  I freely admit its a bit of a stretch, but read on and I believe you will see the connection.

The Kentucky Derby / Keyword Analysis:

Without winning the Kentucky Derby, you have no chance to attempt the Triple Crown.  Its over before it starts.  Success in the race requires talent, hard work, and luck.  The same can be said for keyword analysis.  However in this case, we can exchange luck for more talent and hard work.  A keyword list must include the phrases which offer the greatest opportunity to your business.  This is measured by the probable impact on search rankings, and the value of the relationship created once you are found.

Like a Derby horse must have the pedigree for durability and distance capability, your SEO team must have a deep understanding of your business, industry and of course search algorithms.  When properly executed, your SEO will create name recognition, opportunities and revenue – just like a Kentucky Derby winning horse.

Please check back tomorrow for the 2nd leg of the Triple Crown…

Originally Posted June 12, 2012 by John Scranton

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Posted in: Insurance Agency SEO, Insurance Agency Web Marketing
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7 Common Insurance Email Marketing Mistakes

  • Posted on June 8, 2017
  • by John Scranton

insurance agency email marketingHere is a list of seven important insurance eMarketing mistakes to avoid:

  1. Do not use an enhanced email signature: If your email signature (your name, contact info, etc.) uses a large font, is boldfaced, or appears in a different color, this is called “shouting” in email jargon and Outlook Junk Mail filters and corporate email filters don’t like this.
  2. Don’t use an HTML email: These days text base emails stand a better chance at getting past junk mail and corporate email filters than HTML emails. Besides, if you’re using HTML, you’re more likely to take advantage of special fonts, invoking some of the issues noted in rule #1.
  3. Avoid words like “free”: It’s one of the most common words activating junk mail and corporate email filtering. It’s right up there with the prescription dysfunction drug names and other spam alert words and phrases.
  4. Don’t italicize, underline or use exclamation points: Again, this is a form of shouting.
  5. Avoid rush words or phrase: “Act now, offer good today, respond soon, or sale ends tomorrow” are all examples of rush words or phrases. This is a big red flag for filters.
  6. Avoid Bayesian Poisoning: Odd or complex phrasing can invoke something called Bayesian Poisoning, which appears to be an attempt to bypass Bayesian spam filtering and results in your email looking like spam. The best way to avoid this is the old, “simpler is better” rule.
  7. Avoid Graphics when possible: Graphics often display poorly, especially for text base email clients. When sending B2B eMarketing Campaigns, use multipart mime to ensure optimum rendering. When sending individual emails, don’t assume what you see is what they get. WYSIWYG may be true for the email you’re looking to send, but what arrives can be a completely different story. Remember all the retail advertisements you receive and the blank real-estate and little red X’s which appear everywhere? Not only can graphics create a poor look and feel, they can increase the likelihood of appearing as spam. Graphics often connote an advertisement.

Originally Posted on March 26, 2015 by John Scranton

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Posted in: eMarketing
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Sales & Marketing Tip of the Day: Narrow Your Focus

  • Posted on June 6, 2017
  • by John Scranton

What services do you provide?  Why would people want to do business with you?  How are you better than the next guy?

These simple questions are much too difficult for many agency executives to answer.  The answers are clouded by the abstract concepts and strategies we read in the trade magazines explaining how to mask the fact that we are selling insurance.  The quandary is further complicated for those who are striving to be everything to everyone – and are at risk of being nothing to no one.

The fastest and most effective path to cleaning the dust off of your value proposition and finding your true mission as a salesperson or producer is to narrow your focus.  Keep throwing the darts at the 20 until you can consistently hit your target.  Only then should you consider going for the 19’s, 18’s or bulls-eye.

StartUpSelling provides marketing solutions to insurance agencies.  Our deep industry expertise allows us to understand the challenges our clients face and to create effective solutions.  Our virtual model allows us to deliver a compelling value and responsive service.

Those are my responses to questions above.  Delivered from memory as fast as I can type.  They are easy to answer, because we have a highly focused sales and marketing strategy.

Originally Posted on May 14, 2012 by John Scranton

 

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Posted in: B2B Marketing, Business, Insurance Agency Lead Generation, Insurance Agency Marketing, Sales
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Sales & Marketing Tip of the Day: Refresh Your Prospect List

  • Posted on June 2, 2017
  • by John Scranton

Insurance Agency Email MarketingRefreshing your prospect list and your prospect email list will often uncover low hanging fruit, ripe for the picking.  In my case, this could be a new VP Marketing or VP Sales at a large agency who needs web marketing help and simply is not yet aware of all the available resources.  In the case of an agency producer, a refresh might turn up a new VP HR or CFO who happens to want to shop their employee benefits to prove their worth and has no loyalty to the current broker.  A list refresh can be a cost effective way to quickly open a dialogue with new prospects.

Originally Posted on May 9, 2012 by John Scranton

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Posted in: Insurance Agency Lead Generation, Insurance Agency Marketing, Sales
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Insurance Email Marketing & Multivariate Testing

  • Posted on May 31, 2017
  • by John Scranton

Picture1Insurance email marketing can and should be one of the most powerful lead generation tools in marketer’s tool box. And when it comes to insurance email marketing, multivariate testing offers a highly advantageous methodology to improve results, providing greater insights into email campaign optimization and conversion efficiency. A/B split testing offers a simplistic way understand multivariate testing. Split testing is an empirical approach used to determine optimum conversion rates (click-through rates for example) for an insurance website, landing page, banner ad or email campaign.

Let’s say that an insurance marketer creates two versions of an email campaign (we’ll call them email version A and B) and wants to determine which of these versions has the more effective subject line. The split test works best if the emails are identical except for one modification, which in this case is the subject line. Agency and broker email marketing campaign variations can be can be dramatic or subtle. Each subject line can be completely different, or a one word change can be measured. Agencies can then measure the campaign fundamentals, differentiating including open rate and click-through rate to determine which insurance email marketing campaign was more effective.

For example, if campaign A yielded an open rate of 20% with 10 clicks, and campaign B yielded an open rate of 25% with 14 clicks, then the balance of the emails should use campaign B. What balance you may ask? Multivariate testing can use a small portion of your email marketing contact list. If the marketer used 10% for the A/B test mentioned above, the balance, or in this case the remaining 90%, can then be used to send the superior email, email version B.

Multivariate testing is similar to A/B testing, but can be used to test multiple insurance email marketing iterations at the same time. A simple way of thinking about this is an A/B/C/D split test, with each email using a different subject line. If the click through results of version D are twice as good as the other emails, then the balance of the email can be sent using insurance email version D. Multivariate split testing allows agencies to optimize their insurance email marketing campaigns to ensure optimum effectiveness, from subject lines to calls to action, to content density. Multivariate testing allows insurance marketers to continually measure and refine, and improve their insurance email marketing initiatives, to generate more insurance leads.

For more information on territory exclusive Insurance Agency Marketing Solutions visit our website: http://www.startupselling.com.

Originally Posted on March 19, 2015 by John Scranton

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Posted in: eMarketing
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