I was at the gym the other day and saw one of the funniest t-shirts: it said, “World’s Okayest Brother”.
I’m not sure why I found it so funny, but I found myself laughing about it more than once. I probably found it funny in the absurdity of the guy so loudly proclaiming his mediocrity. I mean, who does that?! ; )
Oh wait, there’s a very good chance that you do. I’m dead serious.
While I doubt that you have t-shirts proclaiming “World’s Okayest Insurance Agency” or “World’s Okayest Salesperson”, I can almost guarantee you that this is the message your insurance agency is communicating on your website and printed materials and that you’re even saying some of these things in presentations. I’ve seen it and heard it all from agencies of all sizes, even those with their own marketing departments or those using outside marketing firms.
Those seemingly harmless phrases that the industry has used for ages are telling people you are the “okayest.”
“We’re free” – These are the two most dangerous words in your vocabulary. Promoting yourself as free is like apologizing in advance for your mediocrity. Besides, clients don’t expect free, they expect great. Choose to be great, there’s much less competition.
“Click here for a free quote” – Really?! If you are telling people you want to be a trusted advisor, but your primary call to action is to get a free quote, there is a complete disconnect in your messaging. People looking for a partner (trusted advisor) do NOT find them by filling out a free quote form. Offers of free quotes scream mediocrity.
“In business for eleventy billion years” – So what?! All that tells me is that you are likely entrenched in the antiquated ways of the industry and I don’t want to do business with you. And, besides, if your “eleventy billion” years is a supposed reason to do business with you, does that mean someone with “eleventy billion and one” years is a better option for me?
You need to, and can, deliver a more effective marketing message
Come on guys, I KNOW you are better than this! We are not an “okay” industry, we are arguably the single most important business relationship that business owners have. I know you are able to make a significant impact on the most critical aspects of your client’s business.
- I have seen you impact them financially.
- I know you help improve their operations.
- I watch you help them craft their strategy.
- I have witnessed you strengthen their bond with their employees.
I’m not sure if we wear the “badge of okayness” out of laziness or out of humility, but it has to change!
The financial reward for mediocrity in our industry has been way too high, but the last couple of years have changed that. Not only will mediocrity no longer receive the high financial reward it has in the past, mediocre agencies/producers will not survive.
And it’s not simply a matter of whether you deliver mediocre or exceptional value to clients; it’s what you tell prospects to expect in the first place that will determine your fate.
If you communicate “world’s okayest agency” in your marketing message, you will never get a chance to deliver exceptional value.
Now, go look at your website with unbiased eyes and tell me what expectations you’re setting. Go ahead, I dare ya!