Create Your Insurance Agency Referral Rewards Program
Creating Your Insurance Agency Referral Rewards Program
Today is Day 13 in my series on “Creating A Mega Agency Without A Mega
Budget: 59 Ways To Attract All The Insurance Clients You Need.” (Click here
and enter your email address on the right to get the entire checklist instantly.)
This list is a mix of marketing ideas and ways to streamline your agency operations
and improve service, referrals, retention, and more. All designed to help you take
your agency to the next level without going broke in the process.
#13: Create a simple Referral Rewards program
I kind of hate that Referral Programs have become so “standard” and, in my
opinion, so badly done.
Every insurance business coach and guru preaches the referral program, but only a
handful of agents are reporting any RESULTS. (Click here to read my post on “Do
Referral Programs really work?”)
So how do you position yourself in the group that gets results?
Well, first problem is that too many people are thinking of their referral program as something that they can “set it and
forget it.” It’s not a slow cooker. It’s an ongoing tool that needs ongoing promotion in order to see any new
quotes and sales.
When I look at agents that are having success, I see someone who talks about referrals constantly. They make sure
that they NEVER stop getting the message out. It is a core philosophy that is ingrained in their team and their work
So I want you to begin here if you’re just getting started.
First, how do you want to reward your referrals? Many agents have expressed concern to me over their insurance
license and being able to give referral rewards. Obviously this is an important thing to check into! You need to contact
your state insurance department if you’re unsure.
Based on my experience, what I’ve found is that typically you can give a reward as long as it is not tied to the condition
of a sale. So you can’t say “I’ll only give you a reward if the person you refer purchases a policy.” That could be
considered rebating so be aware of it.
Now, you need to decide what you want to give. I’ve seen tons of different “thank you” ideas for referrals. Some of my
$5 Starbucks gift cards with a note that says “Thanks A Latte”
A few scratch off lottery tickets with a note that says “We Hope You Win Big!”
Just a nice thank you card! That can go a long way. Try these: Referral Thank You Cards: Festive
At this point, you’re not trying to woo them with big spending. You’re trying to show appreciation. And real, genuine
appreciation can go a long way.
Many agents take each referral name and enter them into a monthly drawing from here. I like this idea because it gives
you a lot of visibility to work with in promoting your program.
So let’s say that every month, you do a drawing for a $25 restaurant gift certificate. Or maybe it’s for 2 movie tickets and
a concession stand gift card. Get creative! Think about what would be fun for your client, not just what looks
You want the process to be visible. You could make a video of you drawing a name from the fishbowl in the office and
post it on Youtube and your agency Facebook page. Put the names of everyone who gave you a referral that month in
your monthly newsletter (paper or email form) as well as announce this month’s winner.
I like doing a drawing because you can ask the client to come by and pick up their gift and try to get a quick photo of
them with it. Use the photo in your marketing! Post a thank you on your Facebook with the winner’s picture (most people
won’t mind, just ask them first!). Put pictures on your Referral Rewards flyer. Think of as many ways as possible to use
these little marketing tools on a consistent basis.
Lots of people also keeps all the names and do a grand prize drawing at the end of the year. I’ve seen things like a
big screen TV or a vacation package like a cruise. I think these are great, but not really necessary. Meaning that it
gives you great material to work with and promote, but I don’t think they will cause you to have an increase in referrals.
If I were going to re-create my own Referral Rewards program today, here is what I would do.
I would create a flyer stating that anytime you refer someone to our agency for a quote, we enter your name into a
drawing for a “Night Out” package including two movie tickets and a $20 concessions gift card.
I would NOT mention a reward just for the referral. Instead, I would let that be a pleasant surprise. So after each
referral, we would send a note with a $5 gift card.
I would coach my staff on mentioning referrals in EVERY single transaction. Something simple like “We really appreciate
your business. Keep in mind that every time you refer something to our agency for a quote, we enter your name into a
monthly drawing for _____”
You could create flyers to hand out to each person that comes in or you could create small, brightly colored strips
with the details that you staple to a receipt or to anything that you mail out.
Remember, for this to work you must always make it a point to ask for a referral name too! So when you take
someone’s information for a quote, make sure to ask how they heard about you and the name of the person that
Your referral rewards program doesn’t have to be customer’s only. Many agents actively promote rewards to
Realtors and Mortgage Lenders as well!
I recommend reading The Referral Engine: Teaching Your Business to Market Itself for more ideas on how to
use referral marketing in a service based business.
I hope these ideas will help you in creating and defining your own referral system. It doesn’t have to be complicated or
expensive to be effective. The most important part is that you make it a part of your agency culture, actively promote it
consistently, and get your staff involved. It will make all the difference.
(Don’t have the “59 Ways To Attract All The Insurance Clients You Need” checklist yet? Click here and enter your email
address on the right for the instant download.)
Robyn Sharp is an insurance marketing expert (and former agency owner). She specializes in content
creation for insurance agencies as well as consulting and training in insurance marketing. Get a copy of her
free checklist "59 Ways To Attract All The Insurance Clients You Need" at http://agencyupdates.com.