Open enrollment is right around the corner and guess what, you’re probably scrambling again like you did last year. At this time last year, you were still trying to play catchup and figure out how to reach out to new audiences and get new clients. You have done the same exact thing this time and the goal is to have an even better year.
While it’s not smart to wait until the last minute, as a professional you know what to expect during this time of year and how to utilize that experience to have a successful season. However, if you consider the changes that are going on in the economy, healthcare itself and more, it’s best to do a little prep work before you dive in.
Starting Early On Open Enrollment
Most Medicare recipients will not be signing up the first day, or week or even the first month. They too like to wait until the last minute and expect everything to fall in place as well. While they have the luxury of doing that, you need to get started a bit earlier. In fact, it’s the business you do early on that could determine the year you are going to have. Consider that the people who are delaying enrolling are the ones who have a person to handle it for them. On the other hand, the people who are signing up or looking for information early on, are the ones you can turn into clients because they are new to the process.
How To Grab A Bigger Audience
It doesn’t matter what you sell, you always want to expand your audience. With millions of new applicants for Medicare this year, there will be plenty of opportunities for you to grab the business you want. However, it really comes down to understanding the best ways to grab that audience and show them the value you can offer. Here’s where you can start:
- Content: There’s a reason why they say content is king when it comes to marketing. A good blog or informative video can outperform the best ads made. Why? Because people connect with the simplicity and honesty of those formats and how they offer more detail rather than a sales pitch. Create content that you can share on multiple platforms and allow it to build organically with your audience.
- Frequency: While content is important when it comes to anything, you need frequency. If you are producing a blog that shows people important tips for when they enroll in Medicare, how often can they expect a blog from you or a video? When people get used to your frequency of content production, you become part of their routine.
- Topics: What do you plan on talking about? Are you going to talk about what is happening in health insurance now, important dates coming up or something else? Have a game plan for content topics and do not try to smush everything into the same piece.
- Platforms: You can create a video that shows people the importance and value of health insurance. However, where can you get an audience with this type of content? Knowing where to place it and how to organically direct it toward people is key to getting viewership.
- Give away for free: Do not expect people to give you their time for no other reason than you simply providing them the information they can get on the web as well. Give them useful information that they cannot access without having the knowledge and experience of the field that you have.
- Demand in return: While it’s great to give something for free, that doesn’t mean you cannot benefit from it. What you need to demand in return from this audience is not money, but their interest in your content and their contact information, specifically their emails so that you can let them know when new content is available, important deadlines and more.
- Be the reference: Would you rather someone who has a question about Medicare check on Google or call you directly? That may seem like more work on your plate but consider the client who calls you for information is going to use you when open enrollment is here.
- Try new things: There are new apps, new websites and plenty of other creative ways to reach audiences. Give them a try but understand who is using them and for what. Maybe you will not get the response you hoped for or maybe, since you are the only one on that platform talking about health insurance, people will have more interest in what you are saying.
- Focus on the client’s struggles: People have been hit hard with inflation this year. Use that and other things you’ve learned about your client’s challenges this year in your content. Talk about the problems and challenges people are having with healthcare and coverage. This is what people are searching for, answers to questions they have that relate to them.
If you are not able to grow your audience this year, is it because your current marketing methods are failing? Possibly, but it can also be that you have more competition or the competition is trying something different. You have to be familiar with your audience and know where they are going for information, especially as it relates to health insurance. Targeting senior citizens in your ads may seem smart, but what if you can connect with thousands of people between the ages of 30 and 50 about health insurance? Perhaps they are helping a parent or elderly loved one who is enrolling for the first time and they have no clue what to do.
The fact is that Medicare open enrollment is an opportunity to lock in hundreds or thousands of new clients. However, while the opportunity is there, so is the competition. You have to be creative and try new things. Even if you put time into launching content on a new platform and it gets you zero results, you gained valuable experience and know where not to focus your time next year, or know that there are things you may want to try differently. Every year presents new opportunities and challenges for advisors and the key thing we learn each year over and over again is that there are new simple solutions here. You have to put in the work if you want to the results.