Marketing is rapidly separating successful, growing agencies from the pack. But it’s not an easy fix to just add marketing activities. In fact, agency marketing is typically ineffective at best and can be downright counterproductive.

Understandably, agency leaders feel anxiety about marketing because it’s perceived as a difficult mystery. However, marketing is simply communication across different mediums. Done right, it prepares buyers for a conversation with your sales people, creates a strong mutual attraction, and allows you to get relationships off to the right start.

Wendy Keneipp

But, here’s the kicker – for that communication to be effective, it has to be the right message, delivered to the right audience, and it has to be good and consistent. Insurance agencies are notorious for bad communication, which is why marketing seems difficult. We make it overly complicated by not properly preparing for what we want to say and being terribly inconsistent in the delivery. Marketing should be a long-term, consistent effort.

Good messaging starts inside

Creating the right message starts with clarity about your business – your brand. Leadership needs a clear picture of the company in order for the rest of the team to have a clear picture.

We help our Q4i agencies define their business and brand so they can make consistent decisions across the entire business model. Items that we explore and help define for their businesses include: Culture, Why, Values, Ideal Client, Value Proposition, Client Challenges, and Vision.

This Brand Definition is then used to guide leadership decisions: Who makes a good cultural fit for the team? What employers make good clients? Which services are the right fit for your value proposition?

When you communicate this repeatedly and effectively with your team, they, too, can make better decisions. But not knowing your intent and values, everyone is left to use personal values, which always results in disparate decision-making for the company.

When you believe it, others will too

If your message is not clear in your mind, it will not be clear in your communication. And if you don’t believe it, no one else will either. But when you and your team believe and live it with sincerity, you allow others to trust and believe it too.

"If your message is not clear in your mind, it will not be clear in your communication."

Messaging based on your business model and company belief system becomes very attractive to potential buyers with similar beliefs. The message also repels people who are looking for a different value proposition and beliefs. Don’t let this upset you. Instead, let it give you confidence that your prospects are self-filtering, making your face-to-face conversations that much more productive.

Going off-message

Everyone on your team represents your company. Everything they say and do reflects your business and your brand. If you’ve got people saying what they want rather than what you want, you’ve lost control. Continuity is imperative for a consistent, recognizable brand.

Modern business owners need to be the chief brand officer and be(come) obsessed with defining your business, message and culture to connect with team members and clients. The quicker you get here, the quicker you’ll become the feared competitor in your market.

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