The Hive Five Podcast
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Offered to Independent & Captive Agents!
We are super excited to have been able to talk to Chris Paradiso in this Bonus Episode of the Hive Five Podcast. Chris is the founder of Paradiso Presents, but also the owner and insurance agent with Paradiso Insurance and Financial Services headquartered near Hartford, Connecticut. Through Paradiso Presents, Chris travels the country speaking to and teaching insurance agents about marketing for their insurance agencies. Over the years, Chris has become an expert in insurance marketing and has a passion for sharing his knowledge with other insurance agents. In fact, he donates all proceeds from his speaking engagements, conferences, and workshops to charity.
The main focus of this bonus episode was to highlight Chris’ upcoming event in San Antonio on January 24-25th, 2019. Chris and Joe Estey, will be hosting an intimate, two-day workshop focused on the independent insurance agent and their success through digital marketing. They will be discussing and helping agents with branding, blogging, search engine optimization, but also social media strategies. Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, and more will be covered, as well as the importance and benefit of making videos. All of this info and more will be covered in the two-day workshop, and the number of agents admitted will be kept lower in order to allow for more personalized advising and a more intimate teaching environment.
BriteBee is proud to have partnered with Paradiso Presents in order to maximize the value for agents that attend! If you are an insurance agent, especially independent, you won’t want to miss this opportunity! Make sure to register soon in order to reserve your spot.
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Hey guys, thank you so much for listening to our bonus episode today on the Hive Five Podcast. I’m really excited to be talking with Chris Paradiso, founder of Paradiso Presents, and also the owner and insurance agent at Paradiso Insurance and Financial Services. Guys, I know you’ve probably heard of him, but if you have not, if I can just ride on the coattails of Chris, I’m doing really well. With Paradiso Presents, he is a speaker and insurance marketing expert that travels the country teaching insurance agents. We’re really excited to talk to him today about a conference he’s hosting in San Antonio and BriteBee gets to partner with just humbling just to be able to do that and it’s in January 2019. Thanks for being on today, Chris.
Thank you. Appreciate you.
Absolutely. Well, let’s talk about this event. First, let’s make sure everyone understands what’s going on, so give us a little bit of detail of what’s happening.
Well, we have great opportunity to be able to do a two-day workshop in beautiful warm sunny January 24th and 25th in San Antonio. Yeah, here in Connecticut in January, most people will realize it’s much nicer to be in San Antonio.
Yeah, definitely. Definitely. And tell us a little bit about what’s, what’s going on at this event, why is it so special?
Sure. Uh, I, to have Joe sitting right here next to me and Joe’s head of marketing and what we’re going to be doing is really something we do. We do quite a few of them, more local here on the east coast here located at my office. What ended up happening was several agencies that they asked and said, hey, could you really break down an everyday opportunity on how you and your agency, what is Joe doing every single day? So really what, what came from that was a two-day workshop, and I call it all things marketing. Basically, what we’re going to be talking about from social media, everybody wants to talk about Facebook. Everybody wants to talk about twitter. But how about when we dive deep, when you talk about SEO strategy, we really talk about Google Plus and its role and how it plays a very important role.
Uh, imparity. So, insurance saying this, Pinterest, um, those are just some other social tools ever going to be talking about. We’re going to talk all digital. We love digital marketing. We love email marketing. A joking kind of go through the onboarding process. So we have 28 touch points. First nine months someone comes on and does Paradiso Insurance and what we do, we dive deep in that because a really the education is critical. It’s critical because most people say, what the hell are you going to be emailing these people so much. So, in a short timeframe, absolutely critical content of that email is critical. Email marketing is alive and well. Would you not agree Joe?
Oh, it’s even as a, as a tool of communication, it’s still more effective than social media, which is something that a lot of people are not aware of in today’s day and age.
You want to repeat that really quick, Joe, because I’m sure anybody that’s listening to the podcast and saying that they’re wrong. You just said something very, very, very intense.
At the very end of the year, 2017, I looked up through HubSpot, they say email marketing is so alive and well. It was still more effective than social media as a communication tool and if those that really loved to study and go to Forrester, Forrester Research as our good friend over here around focuses on insurance and buying habits stolen. Number one, effective marketing tool for insurance agents that are thriving is email marketing should be so encouraging to everyone. Yeah. No. The other thing, because they already have the emails. Well unfortunately a lot of the agencies we’re sitting down with. We’re finding out that they don’t have the emails. Goodness. Yeah. And, and you know when I say don’t have them, when we, when I hear that they have 19 percent, a very common excuse and I will say, excuse me, I love my fellow insurance agents, but it’s an excuse when people say, well, my clients don’t have emails, are you freaking kidding me? My dad’s 84 years old and he’s got an email. Right. You didn’t start out this way though.
I mean, did you start kind of in that same position and understand that you need to do more and then you started learning more about this. I mean, where did you come from? This is a 10 year journey. 2008. I signed a contract to get a website. I barely had set up email in 2008, which I shouldn’t say that it was probably early 2008. I did some email, but just to think in 10 years, I like to say I stepped out of my comfort zone and said, you know, I like authentic self on a bag of sand smart, but I’m not that smart. I just took a risk and believe that, you know, uh, the, I believe in the Internet, believe if the world was changing and changing fast and invested a ton of money in a website also into a social and digital.
So that’s where the whole thing started in 2008. And you know, I usually like to tell the story about how I started and it was just 10 years ago that I basically had nothing. I had no internet presence, that’s for sure. And almost no, uh, email marketing presence. And I’ll tell you why when I started in 2008, I had less than three percent of my clients emails and now emails are about 96 percent. And why were some people, why we’re not 100 percent is there are people that do not want to be emailed and they’re saying, hey, we’ll give you the email, but we do not want a single email. We’re not looking and you know, in today’s day and era with as many emails we get can understand some people saying that. So what, we’re pretty fortunate to be able to still have, you know, 95 to 96 percent of our clients emails.
But it is a process. It’s not something that happens overnight. Um, if you don’t have an email marketing strategy, you don’t just and Joe, uh, has helped build a lot of our email templates. They need to, they need to be specific. You can’t just plug and play, you can’t just go to a contractor or consultant say, Hey, create these for me. There’s a little bit more to the email templates than that. Your focus on your content, your pictures need to be organic, natural, not stock. There’s a time and energy that goes into it. So don’t think if you don’t have it that you just snap your fingers. Don’t get frustrated with them. Do it right. I’m do it slow. Take your time. But at the end of the day, you’re right. It’s what’s key.
Yeah. That’s awesome. Well, tell us a little bit more about this speaking career. I mean, you’ve come from this place where you started 10 years ago and you figured out a lot of things along the way, uh, that are extremely beneficial and have helped your agency grow tremendously. Why would you want to share this with everyone else? Why wouldn’t you just take that for yourself?
Well, um, I will tell you, and I do not apologize. I think independent agents are the backbone of this country. I’ll repeat myself, I think the backbone of America is independent insurance agents. I’m not bashing captive agents. There’s a lot of great captive agents that are doing great things for their community. I’ve never argued that, but why I get back is a, I feel obligated for the senses. I believe. I believe in the industry. I believe we help people every day. Um, I always told my father growing up, I wanted to be a social worker and my dream came true. I am a social worker. I just actually get paid really well. Unfortunately, most social workers do great work and they’re on unpaid right and we get to help people every single day. I don’t care if it’s delivering a check for a fire, fighting for a customer because an insurance company is playing hardball.
I don’t care what it is. We get to fight every day to help people every single day. And, uh, I believe that’s my way of giving back. I’m not afraid to share all of our marketing techniques. Joe can tell you how many agencies have flown in here from either Canada or California. I don’t care. Texas, you name it. You name the state. They’ve been here. We love and we invite people to come and spend a couple of days with us. And um, and hopefully we can open their minds to change key. Yeah. So tell me where would you see in the next 10, 15 years, I mean maybe even five, five years, where do you see insurance heading? Where do you see the insurance agent specifically? Why change agents have to change for one reason and one reason only because customers are changing. When the Internet came out, what happened to the insurance agent?
He was, he and she were no longer in control, in control because now people have the access to the Internet. If you want education, you want to learn about policies as Joe will probably tell you. Oh, absolutely. So, so you can, you don’t, you don’t. We had the power before because we had the education. We don’t have that power anymore. With that being said, customers will continue to change. Right now, if you don’t have a strategy on self-service, the ability in the near future to allow your clients to do some service work themselves. I think you’re, you’re behind the eight ball. It’s funny that we actually bring this up again because back in 2013, Forbes pushed out an article saying that the independent agent could in fact be a dying breed, but here we are alive and well in 2018 we’re still getting the job done.
Still bringing that authentic feel to the table for our customers and still making those interpersonal relationships as far as where the independent agent is moving. I don’t think we’re going anywhere. I think it’s more of a fact that we are going to be embracing technology, adapting today, the average change in customer experience and you know, figuring out how to just keep on serving our customers to the very best of our ability using technology and things like that when we move forward the key concept of serving our customers because the customer has changed. If we’re not embracing technology, whether it’s mobile or Internet, you are behind the times and self-service is going to play a huge role. I think the other thing that’s going to be a major contributor to change is technology itself. Think about 10 years ago, um, when I started this journey. Was there ever such a policy of cyber liability?
No. One thought about it. Yeah. I just think one of those Internet born 1993. Yeah. I mean that’s when the Internet was affordable where people actually had it at their place. You can’t really do. I mean, I’m sure you can go back into the eighties and say, hey, there was something there, but the common person did not have it. If you really think about that, how employers or in some parts of the country you would call it epl coverage. That was nonexistent 10 years ago. It’s very prevalent today. Just like years from now, we keep hearing these driverless cars, those cars probably will have car insurance. Okay. It may be sold by the independent agent or maybe not. I sold by the catalytic, but there’s going to be another product out there. Products have changed. People have changed. We’re not going.
But what you guys are doing and this conference in January, 2019 is going to be helping agents move forward in this new environment and it’s ever changing.
I think the key factor, some other key points that we need to educate agents is the power of YouTube and the power of video proposals. Video plays an enormous role. It has played an enormous role. You’ll laugh. I find it fascinating that there’s consultants out there now coming in and talking about the importance of video. We were fortunate to start or create our very first video on YouTube in 2009, and people thought I was crazy. Fortunate enough that we have. I was crazy enough to do that to be able to create somewhat of a following. Do you use video to be able to help in the process of a claim? Wish people happy birthday, thank them for doing business with us. Video plays an enormous role today. I think an even bigger is video proposals and being able to show other agents the power of it and show them how easy it is to do. Joe’s gonna pop them on.
They’re going to be bringing their computers and they’re gonna create a YouTube video. They’re going to create a video proposal. They’re going to leave this conference or workshop, I hate to call it a conference because it’s really a hands-on workshop. Joe and I will be walking around. It’s going to be an intimate group. We are not, we really don’t want more than 30 agencies. The ideal would be 20 to 25 spots. Um, so we really want people to leave there and understand. The last thing that I would say about the conference that I think now is the power of tracking everything. So, your ROI that was talking about ROI, ROI, ROI, but who’s actually tracking our life. Let’s talk about retention premium versus retention rate. We’re going to talk about reshapes. So if you’re actually remarketing, remarketing versus what’s your success rate?
We need to analyze this just like we need to analyze what is our traction on Facebook, you know, what are the key words, Yoast SEO strategy. Oh, absolutely. And the key components I’m tracking on social media using analytics, but there’s much more than googling and Alisha was in our marketing team. We have a meeting every Monday, once a month we go over and present some kind of, gives us a snapshot. It’s interesting, right when you find out who our top five, top 10, uh, leaning links to our website. It’s fascinating. Really. Who would ever think Pinterest is one of our top producing opportunities to our website. You know, the agent’s probably, shaking their head and so on.
I love it. I love, uh, I love the traction. I love the ability to be able to visually tell the story. Visual content marketing is absolutely critical and we can’t wait to share this. Uh, we feel it’s absolutely critical and it’s my way of giving back the fee that people pay goes 100 percent of the profits go to charity so that I can show to other agents that I have a commitment to them, commitment to them and I’m hoping they make a commitment to me that commitment is. I asked him to look me in the eyes and say, will you implement at least one thing after you leave this workshop?
Yeah. Number one goal. Yeah. No, that’s awesome. And we’re, we’re really excited to, to be able to partner with you guys and to hopefully increase that to at least implement two things. We’re excited to do that at least two right. If we can add at least enough value to where they could implement two things. We’ve done a good work. Absolutely. I couldn’t agree more. Awesome. Well hey, tell us again where can we go and find out more information about this. We will have it in the show notes, but go ahead and tell us as well. Where can we go?
You’re looking to sign up for the San Antonio Workshop Coming Up January 24th, 2019. Go ahead and go on www.paradisopresents.com. That’s spelled p a r a d i s o presents.com. You’ll see a tab that says attend a seminar at the very top and if you click on it, it’s a registration link and all of the corresponding event information right there on our website.
Awesome. Awesome. Well, we really appreciate it guys and we will make sure that this gets out to the other agents who maybe you’d have not heard this before and will definitely help you guys increase that to two actions by the time they leave. Guys, if you have any more questions, feel free to chat us or feel free to reach out to Chris and Joe and they’ll be more than happy to talk to you saying we really appreciate your partnership.
Oh, it’s our pleasure. We were really excited, so we will see you guys there in Texas. All right.
Register here to attend workshop: https://agents.britebee.com/insurance-agent-marketing-chris-paradiso/
More information about January workshop: https://www.paradisopresents.com/join-us-san-antonio-coming-january/
Check out Paradiso Presents: https://www.paradisopresents.com/
Check out Paradiso Presents YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/paradisopresents/videos
Check out Paradiso Insurance: https://www.paradisoinsurance.com/