Posts Tagged ‘Auto Responders’
Improved Email Deliverability in 2012
AgencyIQ has recently UPGRADED our email delivery performance by partnering with SendGrid. This new partnership will dramaticaly increase email deliverability and open ratios for emails sent through AgencyIQ. Without boring you with a lot of technical details, simply put, this higher certification rating will result in more emails getting through filters and security because of our “good email citizenship” rating with this certificiation platform.
So what does this mean for you and your agency?
(MORE DELIVERIES + MORE OPENS)+MORE CLIENTS = $$
The best news is that all of this happens behind the scenes, so you don’t have to do anything different…AND… IT’S FREE! By being a subscriber to the AgencyIQ system, you are the beneficiary of our constant, on-going efforts to bring you the most up-to-date, innovative technology and workflow tools to help you grow your business!
Contact us today at AgencyIQ
CALLING IT QUITS
Mike Modano, the star forward for the Dallas Stars hockey team, has probably played his last professional hockey game. I was one of the fortunate few to be in the stands for his last Home game appearance. What a night to remember: Modano had an assist on a goal, scored the game tying goal late in the 3rd period and scored a goal in the overtime shoot out to win the game against his nemisis the Anaheim Ducks! Talk about a story book ending to a career….. And a perfect end to a career spent with one organization for his entire career, playing key roles as leading scorer, team captain and mentor and elder statesman in the locker room as his career ended. A truly humble player and man, Mike gave back to hockey and the community; generous with his time, money and talents, the city of Dallas is better for his involvement over the last 16 years. The Dallas Stars have some mighty big skates to fill with Mo’s departure.
In our careers, we’ve all know a few Mike Modano’s. People that embody the spirit of our company, contributing at the highest level, team players, always encouraging those around them and bringing out the best performance of others through their example in action. You just can’t imagine how you’d survive without that person! Unfortunately, most organizations don’t plan ahead in anticipation of key personnel eventually leaving. Do you as a business owner have key personnel that you depend on to carry the load? We all do, but do you have a plan on how to move forward if/when they leave? Succession planning is usually way down the list of strategic planning activities, but it is vital to the sustained growth of an organization that you have a plan for replacing key employees. To keep your company vibrant, forward thinking and prepared, having a potential talent pool of internal or external resources is not only smart, it will save you and your organization a lot of heart ache when the day comes for a key employee to be replaced. As a owner/manager, it’s important to recognize the Modano’s in your organization and look ahead on how to deal with the void after their last “game”.
Hey, where did my Auto-responders and Auto-assignments go?
If you’ve taken a peek at your agency configuration lately, you may be wondering where the tabs for Auto-responders and Auto-assignments went. And oh, by the way, what’s this new “Workflow Rulesets” tab? We’ve recently rolled out our next-generation automation system for AgencyIQ, which combines the concepts of Auto-assignments and Auto-responders into an even more powerful workflow process that will deliver huge flexibility and customizability.
What’s this Workflow Stuff?
Gone are the days of only being able to send and schedule e-mails when a lead first enters the system. With the introduction of Workflow Rulesets, you now have the ability to select from a large range of criteria to describe to the system how you want to manage your on-going automated communication with your prospects. Rulesets allow you to describe a series of conditions and actions that are evaluated whenever leads change inside the system.
For example, you may want to assign new leads to producers based on more granular criteria than lead provider, such as zip code or last name (i.e. “Distribute all leads A-M to Bob, and N-Z to Sally”). You may want to cancel pending scheduled e-mails and set up a new set when the lead moves from “New lead” to “Active lead”. The new Workflow system allows you to do this.
The Workflow system is made up of simple building blocks that you use to assemble your particular configuration. First, you start off by creating a “Ruleset,” which is just a fancy way of saying “If this happens, do this.” In the “my agency” settings in the system, select the “Workflow Rulesets” tab:
This tab displays any Rulesets that you have defined. In the above example, I have two rulesets set up represented by the large gray tiles; one for auto-assignments, and one for auto-responders. The small icons show an overview of what the ruleset consists of (you’ll see more of this later). As I hover my mouse over the ruleset tiles I notice actions hilight on the right-hand side, “edit” and “duplicate.” I can also drag the tiles around to reorder them on the screen. This ordering is important, as the system will process these rules in the order you have them listed, from top to bottom.
If I click “edit” on the “Autoassignment – Steve” tile, I’m taken to the definition for that ruleset:
Reading this screen from top to bottom I see that “If ALL of the following conditions are met” (followed by a list of conditions), “Then the following actions occur” (followed by one or more actions). In this case, I have a simple rule that states “If a new lead enters the system and the lead is unassigned, then assign the lead to the agent ‘Steve DeVoll’.”
Rulesets are made up of conditions and actions. All of the conditions for a given ruleset must be met in order for the given actions to be completed. If one or more of the conditions are not met, none of the actions are performed and the system moves along to the next ruleset in your list. Using this simple construct, you can build up complex scenarios that help automate your sales process.
Notice that the small icons representing the type of condition or action are present here as well. These map back to the Rulesets screen, allowing you to get an overview of what the ruleset is dependent on and what it will do, visually. You can hover your mouse over any icon to have a tool-tip pop up and describe it, if you need clarification.
Pulling down the “-add new condition-” drop-down menu, we see that there are a number of conditions I can use to narrow down this ruleset:
- A change in status (for example, if the lead’s status changes from “New Lead” to “New Policy”)
- Comparison of a Field to a value (for example, if the lead’s ZIP Code field contains “75001″. You can use comparisons such as Less Than/Greater Than, Begins With, Ends With, Contains, etc.)
- A new lead enters the system (to differentiate between when a lead is first received versus a lead being edited)
- Lead is from one or more Lead Vendors (so you can specify one lead provider’s leads from another)
- Lead is of a particular LOB (so you can differentiate Auto from Home, etc.)
- Lead is assigned to a particular user
- Lead is unassigned
These powerful condition building blocks should let you be very specific about when certain actions should occur. Notice that in the case of conditions, order is unimportant. All must be true in order for the actions to occur. However, you can drag the condition tiles around to reorder them to your liking, if you wish.
Pulling down the “-add new action-” drop-down reveals the following actions:
- Send/Schedule an auto-responder
- Assign the lead to a user or a member of a group
- Cancel any previously scheduled (but unsent) auto-responders
- Stop processing rules
The last option, “Stop Processing Rules” is a special action that tells the system that it should not process any rulesets after this one. Use that to end workflow processing in the event a certain set of criteria has been met.
For actions, as opposed to conditions, order is important. For example, if you combined assignment and auto-responders into the same ruleset, you’d want to assign the lead before you scheduled the auto-responders. Drag and drop the actions to reorder them to fit your needs.
In the coming weeks we will be adding additional powerful actions to this list to let you do additional things such as set up ToDo’s or Reminders, send out notifications, and more.
Beyond Initial Auto-responders
These rulesets are evaluated any time the lead is changed. Using the conditions for detecting a change in the status of a lead, you will now be able to cancel any pending auto-responders and schedule new ones. Or, if you have a user in your office that does the quoting, you can have the system assign a lead to them when the status changes to “Quoting”. The possibilities are wide open.
The Workflow system is in place now. We’ve jumpstarted you by migrating your existing auto-assignments and auto-responders into the new structure. If you’d like help or would like to discuss how to extend your workflow beyond what you could do in the past, let us know!
Writing Content for Your Auto Responders
You’ve heard it before: It’s all about the content!
Well, someone has to write that content, and that someone is you. Your mission is clear: For your auto responders to be successful, the content must be easy understand, impossible to ignore. How can you make it happen?
Create a relevant subject of your email: Create a subject line that practically guarantees your email will be opened. When writing your subject, keep in mind that people are scanning their inbox and you have to stand out. Very few readers actually sit down and work their way methodically through their emails. No, they are far more likely to reduce email time by simply running their eyes down the page. So, standing out is essential. Using words that catch people’s attention is vital, but you also need to project an honest idea of what is inside the email. The trick to doing this is to make an action statement or to ask a question. People want you to solve their problems, so by identifying the most common issues faced by your readers and asking them about it will help to draw them in. For example, you might ask your readers “Tired of paying high prices for minimum coverage and horrible service?” This implies that you have a better option and they will be more likely to click on your email.
User action verbs such as “protect”, “maximize”.
Tell your prospects what to do “get a quote”, “contact us”, “reply to this email”
Use adjectives like “low cost”, “easy”
Some great examples of subject lines are:
Protect your assets in this economy
Maximize your protection for your lifestyle
Be proactive about your financial security
Easy and painless insurance information without pushy sales
Next, establish rapport: Make the next section of your email personal. Use your prospect’s name and it will help you to make that connection. Keep in mind your business model and the image that you want your consumer’s to think of when they work with you. Keep your emails upbeat, active, and discuss the strengths of your agency.