How Marketing to Your Community Gives You the Upper Hand

When you’re an independent insurance agency competing with the big name insurance companies, you have to remember the one thing that your agency can provide: an outstanding customer experience. Your agency has the ability to build personable relationships with each and every one of your clients. Meanwhile, customers cannot receive the same memorable experience from an automated system.

Companies like Geico focus on concepts like cheap coverage within 15 minutes or less when they design their platforms. However, in 15 minutes I can guarantee that the customer doesn’t have a full understanding of their policy, liability, or coverage.

At Paradiso Insurance, we believe our customers are worth more than 15 minutes of our time, and I hope your agency believes the same.

Our agency may not provide the cheapest or least expensive insurance coverage, but what we can do is provide the coverage they need at the most affordable price. We take pride in the relationships we build with our customers, and we want to make their insurance lives easy while still giving them our time, so they can understand their coverages. We want each and every one of our customers to have a positive and pleasant experience. That’s why we put so much emphasis on our 12 promises; if a customer is unsatisfied or we make a mistake, we work hard to make things right.

Of course, the customer experience shouldn’t end there. Getting your local community involved with your agency’s marketing efforts will boost your customer experience astronomically.

Through community based marketing, you will be able to dominate your local niche and truly connect with more members of your hometown, but that isn’t what it’s all about at the end of the day.

Paradiso Insurance, if you’re not familiar, is located in the small town of Stafford Springs, CT, and we believe in this community. We also believe that with the help of local independent insurance agencies everywhere, we can change the world, starting with one local community at a time. We’ve had a great impact on Stafford Springs in the past year, and are proud to say we are involved members of our community. Whether your agency is in a small town or a big city, we all have the power to do good and get involved.

Reverse Trick-or-Treat

 Children at the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center cannot have candy, because certain nuts or chocolate can interfere with their treatments. Therefore, during Halloween, our insurance agency takes the time to collect toys from our community members to donate to these kids. Furthermore, since we ask our local community members for help, it empowers them to make a difference and feel great doing it.

Additionally, we also create content about the Reverse Trick or Treat campaign, which is then pushed onto our social media channels. This way our followers are up to date on the campaign progress. Content consists of the various toys that are collected during the drive, thanking others for their generous donations, and an explanation of what exactly Reverse Trick or Treat is. Our community members love to see that they were tagged on our social media networks when it comes time to push out our content, and that helps their ongoing relationship with our agency.

At the end of the day, we create a video to show how everything went, and use it in an email campaign to share with all of our local customers and prospects.

This multi-touchpoint strategy is essential for visibility, and this visibility has a big influence on our agency’s overall reputation. We make a difference in many children’s lives with the help of our hometown, so it’s going to have a positive response in front of our audience.

Bikes for Reading

Another campaign we run annually for our local community is called Bikes for Reading. Our insurance agency gives back to students at our local elementary school by giving them incentives to read more.

We motivate students in grades 2-5 to achieve 70 hours or more of reading during the school year, and as a reward for their hard work have a chance to win a bike.

Once a scholar achieves 70 hours total for the year and has their hours signed by their parents and teachers, they are entered into our raffle. Our agency holds three raffles for the months of March, April, and May. Additionally, we give away four bikes in each raffle to one student in each grade.

Our Bikes for Reading campaign really is something special. The students get incredibly excited when we show up, and enjoy telling us about how much they’ve read. In fact, we’ve met students who have read over 200 hours and continue to read diligently every day.

What it comes down to is that we are making a positive impact on our community, starting with our young scholars. By holding this program, we’re encouraging our readers to grow into intellectuals who will one day give back to our community and make a positive impact on Stafford Springs when they grow up.

Our audience loves to see the content we share every year during our giveaways, too. Not only does this content speak to our brand, it gives us incredible visibility online. The true point of a program like this is to make a difference in your local community. However, if you have the opportunity to gain a following from it, then it is important to capitalize accordingly. Of course, receiving the various words of support and gratitude from parents and their children is just another reason we continue to do what we do.

The Stafford Springs Easter Egg Hunt

This year we also helped with the Stafford Springs Easter Egg Hunt. Our town normally holds egg hunts around Easter, but due to new regulations the town could not host the event this year.

This was quite unexpected for a lot of our local residents here and left them pretty unhappy. Therefore, our insurance agency jumped in to sponsor and help organize the event, and within no time we had many other sponsors joining us to make sure the egg hunt still took place. In fact, all of this helped create a panel of organizers and over 500 residents, and their kids attended the egg hunt.

Of course, the effect on social media and online was astounding, and we had many people thanking us for our involvement in the community and for helping to keep the egg hunt going. We brought happiness to a multitude of children who may not have had an egg hunt to begin with, so our audience loved to see the positive stories and content on their social media feeds.

Flag Day Barbecue

 Every year we make sure to host a huge celebration for Flag Day. That’s why this year we really pushed our marketing strategies online and in person. We made sure to invite all the local businesses in Stafford and spread the word to community hotspots, like the senior center and local library.

It was worth it too because a lot of attendees came to our free event. This year our insurance agency handed out hundreds of custom, patriotic t-shirts and collected retired flags that were given a proper disposal ceremony. Additionally, attendees could also pick up a free replacement flag and mounting kit if they needed one.

Hot dogs, hamburgers, sausages, chicken, and hand-cut roast beef were served all day long for free, thanks to the help of our local community members—the local fire departments even helped to display a giant 90-foot flag. Not to mention, Plymouth Rock Assurance, Radio 98.3, and Journey Found joined us to hand out goodies to attendees.

We also hosted s special celebration for my sister, Rachel. She recently competed in the Special Olympics and won the bronze medal in swimming. We celebrated with Rachel with cupcakes and a large cake in honor of her win. She also received a special news segment that day and was featured on Fox 61, thanks to Rich Coppola.

Of course, the news segment was even more exposure for our agency, but the big takeaway was that we were able to connect with an audience who may not have known about Rachel or her disability.

Stafford was filled with great food, great people, and a whole lot of red, white, and blue. Our social media networks received a lot of attention that day too, not just from our content either. In fact, many attendees shared their own content and tagged us in it. This is great for online exposure, because now your audience is marketing to their network for you.

Flag Day may not be widely celebrated like other holidays in America. However, at our insurance agency it is an annual celebration we share with the community. We pay respect to our flag, country, and all those who have served or are currently doing so.

Getting Involved

It’s clear that community-based marketing is a powerful tool for your insurance agency to utilize. Of course, at the end of the day we have the power to influence a positive change in our communities. Therefore, if you’re looking to implement something similar to our own campaigns, don’t feel timid in asking us. In fact, we’d love to see more insurance agencies involved with their local citizens.

Additionally, you can always look for charities, donation drives, or volunteer opportunities that better the community around you. At Paradiso Insurance, we all like to be involved in giving back in one way or another, and it’s why community-based marketing is a big part of what we do here.

Yes, this type of marketing can extend your reach, but you can make a difference by making your local area a better place to live in. When you connect to your audience in a positive way, you’ll see positive results both for your agency and those around you.