I Own Two Funeral Homes. Can I Sell Leads?

Oct 4, 2016

  1. collura
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    collura New Member

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    i am not a licensed agent. i like the idea of getting my license, but running two funeral homes that have a high call volume does not allow the time needed to nurture a business in life insurance sales. our funeral home does not have a pre need department. we are strictly at need service providers. we are a small family operation in a large city and sometimes we dont have the time to secure pre need contracts. anytime people ask us about planning or preparing, we have a ten minute conversation about the variables in funeral costs and finalize the conversation with directing the interested party to a bank to open a burial reserve account or a local insurance agent to purchase a small policy.

    i try to convince people to purchase as much insurance as possible, because the financial burden extends beyond caskets and flowers to luncheons, headstones, property taxes/liens etc...

    i dont want to sell life insurance, but i want to monetize the interest families seem to have. questions...

    1. would exclusive leads from a funeral home be more or less valuable from a net lead? my initial thought is more valuable because my lead is from family who either made a funeral arrangement or was involved in making a funeral arrangement, which means they can see the value in having a policy to cover final expenses opposed to dipping into savings only to see their resources limit their service options...

    2. how can i scale this? i can purchase products that can be placed in my mortuary that are like digital guest books that allow guests to sign in and opt in to receive information regarding funeral planning. i can also create a landing page and drive traffic to a content based site explaining the ins and outs of funeral related costs and how to save money with certain decisions.

    3. what the going rate for a lead? what technically is a lead? can an email address and only an email address be a lead? what if was able to provide a full name, email and phone number of somebody who was interested in funeral planning and funding?

    4. are final expense prospects a certain age? would agents stay away from prospects over 75?

    thoughts?
     
    collura, Oct 4, 2016
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  2. HoosierLife
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    HoosierLife Want to write $20,000+ Guaranteed? bit.ly/learnfe

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    I'm sure Newby will be along soon and answer all of your questions. But wouldn't it make sense to hire someone? Pay them commission only or base + commission to develop this type of income stream for you? All you would have to do is get licensed and hire a failed FE agent. Plenty of them to go around.

    Seems like you're just leaving a lot of money on the table.
     
  3. Alston
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    Alston Guru

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    I agree with HoosierLife. There are no licensing requirements to sell leads. However, you will probably want to work out an arrangement with a local agent that you trust whether or not you hire him or her.

    A lot of agents fail because they do not have the aggressiveness to be good sales people, however many are bbth knowledgeable and professional. Some may have exactly the personality and skill set you need in your situation because they are not going to be perceived as pushy sales people.

    Your family businesses' reputation could be hurt if your client families got a calls from several different agents, some of whom may not be the most professional. If you sell leads via the Internet this is the likely scenario.

    If it were me, I would definitely work with a limited number of agents, or one agent, all of whom I've vetted.

    If you can get overrides, you will make more money than you would selling leads. If the agent is perceived by your clients as being part of your team, he or she will have a higher closing ratio. If the agent perceives himself or herself as part of your team they are likely to treat your clients more professionally and may be a source of referrals for your funeral home.
     
    Alston, Oct 4, 2016
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  4. HoosierLife
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    HoosierLife Want to write $20,000+ Guaranteed? bit.ly/learnfe

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    Where are you located?
     
  5. Newby
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    Newby Guru

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    My jaw drops when I talk to funeral home owners that still operate like you do in the year 2016. What in the world are you thinking?

    Find a good quality independent life insurance agent in your area. Make sure he is a great fit with you and your staff (professionalism, wardrobe, knowledge, etc.) Give him about 2-hours of training on GPLs, funeral laws, caskets, vaults, cremation, etc. Get him appointed with a good preneed insurance company (Homesteaders, NGL, ForeThought, etc.) Make sure he has a good mix and knowledge with FE companies (Transamerica, Settlers, Oxford, Family Benefit, Gerber, etc.) These choices can change by region. I don't know what state you are in.

    You have the makings of a great relationship. You can treat your families much better than selling them off as leads to random agents. You want the best of the best. And you can create that. And it will not cost you one cent. Your business will be way more valuable with MILLIONS of dollars of preneed funerals on file. Your families will be much better served by having both choices (preneed insurance or FE insurance) explained by a professional person that YOU work closely with.

    I have seen and been involved with small funeral homes that never did more than 100 funerals per year grow to over 300 funeral per year just by embracing pre-need. Your customers want it and your competitors are certainly providing it for them.

    Call me if you want to talk in more detail.
     
    Newby, Oct 4, 2016
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  6. TampaHound
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    TampaHound Guru

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    Great advice but it did get me thinking.

    1) Would not the client need to be informed that they may be connected by an insurance agent? Or are you guys talking about an agent being part of the staff (which seems more logical)?

    2) How does an agent approach a funeral home in this case? If they were looking to establish a relationship?
     
  7. Newby
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    Newby Guru

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    Almost every funeral home in the country has at least one insurance agent on staff or as an independent contracter selling for them.

    The first funeral home I sold for had 12 of us. They owned 4-funeral homes and two cemeteries.

    The easiest way in the door is to let the preneed insurance companies know you are interested. Find out which preneed company your local funeral homes use and get a meeting with their local reps.

    You could also go talk to the funeral home owners.
     
    Newby, Oct 19, 2016
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  8. Justin Bilyj
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    Justin Bilyj Guru

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    Would you avoid the big names then I would assume?
     
  9. Newby
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    Newby Guru

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    As a rule yes. Locally owned is best. But some of the corporate could be OK depending on the local management and how the location you will work at is run.

    It could be a great moneymaker for you or it could be a great learning experience and just an OK income.
     
    Newby, Oct 19, 2016
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  10. I. M. Green
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    I. M. Green New Member

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    One word of advice, avoid failed agents. You will then need to train, monitor, and mentor them which creates a whole new job for yourself.

    Find a local independent agent who is already in business and hire them. You will still need to monitor them, but to a much lesser degree. A good independent agent, once trained, is self starting and automatic.

    One alternative is also to partner with a local agency who you can just sell all of your leads to for one set price on a monthly basis. You will need to send the leads over to them as soon as you get them so I would also look into a CRM that will automatically E-mail, push or foward leads.