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In poker, there is a concept called a Poker Tell.

A tell is any habit, behavior, or physical reaction, that gives other players more information what the player is about to do. For example, maybe one player at the table always scratches his nose when he is bluffing. So, if you see him scratching his nose, it's time to call his bluff and raise the stakes.

So what's an Insurance Tell and how can you use it to grow your insurance agency?

In the world of insurance, a tell would be any signal that somebody gives out that they may soon be in a mode to buy an insurance policy.

If you can identify an insurance tell before a competing insurance agent does, you're well on your way to winning that new piece of business.

It's a bit like that movie Minority Report where criminals are caught before the crimes they commit. If you can start selling insurance to somebody a few months before they actually need insurance, you'll be a step ahead of your competition.

What are tells for prospective insurance agency customers? Here are a few:

  • High-Rise Apartment with Kids in Preschool. A young married couple living in a high-rise apartment in a big city with one or two children in preschool is probably going to be looking to move to the suburbs soon. If you can figure out how to build a relationship with them before they start searching for a home, there's a good chance you'll get their property insurance after they buy a place. How do you reach these folks in an efficient yet cost-effective fashion? There are many ways. For example, a quick direct mail postcard campaign would likely get the job done.
  • Working with a Real Estate Agent or Mortgage Company. Maybe you want to look for tells that are closer to needing insurance. Anybody who is working with a real estate agent or who is applying for a mortgage is clearly on the verge of needing some new property insurance. Build relationships with real estate agents and bank loan officers to see if they can help you target your marketing better. Alternatively, put articles on your website about "How to Buy a House"  if you search engine optimize your articles properly, you may find that many about-to-be-homeowners are spending a lot of time on your site; it's a great time to introduce them to your insurance offerings.

You get the idea. There's no need to wait for a new customer to walk into your office. There's no need to sit waiting for the phone to ring. By leveraging the concept of a tell, you can be selling insurance to people just a few short months before they need it.

Before you know it, your agency will be growing by leaps and bounds and the competition will be scratching their head wondering how you do it.