The truth is of ALL final expense leads available, direct mail leads are KING!
BUT… direct mail final expense leads are becoming harder for independent final expense agents to find.
My goal is to empower you with information on the best direct mail final expense leads available, best vendors, and show you why these leads are awesome!
NOTE: Are you an aspiring or new insurance agent looking for more insight on how the insurance sales industry works? Check out my free New Insurance Agent Resource Guide to help answer many of your questions (as well as ones you didn’t know you had!).
Let’s check out well-balanced direct mail final expense lead options not too expensive, yet create quality prospects.
Life Insurance Lead
Check out the sample direct mail lead above.
You see this lead? Do you see how the verbiage is laid out?
Notice the words “benefit,” “state-regulated,” “tax-free,” etc.?
Of all the options available, most of your direct mail final expense leads I recommend will look like this.
Referencing “Life Insurance” On The Card
The key advantage of my favorite final expense direct mail leads is that it states “life insurance” somewhere on the post card.
The word “life insurance” helps clear up confusion regarding what the mailer is about.
And this means more respondents have genuine interest, compared to a card that doesn’t say “life insurance” (more on this later).
More Specificity = Less Response
Any mailer with added specificity reduces response rates.
Along with a decline in response rates, there exists an inverse relationship between specificity and average response rate.
For example, if you send a final expense mailer that says,
“Send this in if you want to buy life insurance. We’ll send somebody over to talk to you about it.”
…you won’t get many responding back.
But… if you use a less specific lead that doesn’t mention “life insurance,” you’ll get higher response, but less interest in buying.
Less Specificity = Lower Quality Response
Why is this the case?
Respondents curious about the mailer reply, thinking “Uncle Sugar” is ready to provide another hand-out.
In other words, much of the higher response thinks the insurance offer is FREE.
In actuality, prospects respond to any marketing based on what the card says.
That’s why when you use a lead stating “life insurance,” it helps cut back on that “free loader” type of response.
However, you WILL still get people sending back the card thinking it’s free government insurance. But you’ll get LESS of that with this type of lead.
Moral of the story, I recommend ALL new agents to use a lead that says “life insurance.”
Especially for new agents, this type of final expense direct mail lead provides a better quality of response that are less complex to sell.
The Vanilla Lead
Check out the final expense direct mail lead sample below.
At first blush, this lead is almost identical to the one above, right?
What’s the big difference?
The lead does NOT say “life insurance” anywhere on the card!
I call this the “vanilla lead.”
While it loosely refers to it, the lead never specifically says this is about life insurance.
It hints at what it’s about. But never nails down the intent specifically.
As stated earlier, a final expense mailer like this with fewer specifics will produce a higher response rate.
How much does response rate increase?
Depending on your area, expect a 50% to 100% increase.
Just understand that the QUALITY of the response will reduce.
Why Some Agents Prefer One Over The Other
The argument among many experienced agents is this:
“A lead is just an opportunity. In fact, it DOESN’T matter what the lead says. I’ll work whatever lead I get and make the most of it.”
And this is 100% true.
Many agents don’t care whether or not the lead says “life insurance.” They can close any lead.
And if the vanilla final expense direct mail lead provides better results, go for it!
Test, Test, Test!
Over the years, I’ve had heated arguments about which lead is best.
Agents who like vanilla card have their points, and I’ve got mine.
But here’s where it all comes down to…
You MUST test to know what works best for YOU.
See Also Everything You Need To Know About Mortgage Protection Leads!
Some Pros About Vanilla Cards
What’s cool about the vanilla card is that you tend to get in front of people who don’t normally respond back to leads that say “life insurance.”
And that provides opportunities for replacement sales you otherwise wouldn’t get.
Here’s an important truism of insurance ownership…
The best person to sell a policy to is the one who ALREADY is paying the premium.
Prospects who “walk the talk” are the best final expense insurance buyers.
And if you persuade them into upgrading their old plan with yours…
Odds are high they’ll keep you policy and not lapse.
New Agent Lead Recommendation
New to selling final expense?
Stay away from the vanilla card.
Simply put, the vanilla card on average frustrates newer agents.
There’s just more to overcome.
Instead, use the life insurance cards to start out with.
Are you a final expense sales pro?
Try out the vanilla lead card.
You’re good at what you do. And most likely, more people you see means more sales opportunities, regardless of the lead.
There’s one last interesting lead to review.
And I have used it successfully throughout my career as a final expense agent.
I’ll share a story about it before describing it further…
Skeptical At First
Originally, I thought this final expense direct mail lead was complete garbage.
I was highly skeptical. Even though I had seen good agents claim it worked, I refused to give it any second thought.
However, it wasn’t until I went on a final expense carrier convention that I talked to 3 producers making $20,000-$25,000/month in final expense that I changed my mind.
All 3 agents used lead copy I’m about to show you.
And, after meeting with them, I was TOTALLY convinced that this lead generation strategy works.
To test it for myself, I mailed 25,000 final expense mailers over the course of 4 months to test its effectiveness in rural, suburban, urban, and metro final expense markets.
What I discovered is that the lead works VERY well in all markets tested.
In fact, I did very well in my favorite “honey-holes,” and wrote much more business in areas I expected poorer results.
Sample Bribe Card Lead
Let me show you how the lead piece looks:
Allow me to explain why I like this lead card.
First, the card uses “life insurance” verbiage.
Second, including the free gift card to Walmart (colloquially called a “bribe card” going forward) verbiage increased response rates 50% to 100%!
What About Freeloaders?
I know what you’re thinking.
“Aren’t there leads that only want the gift card?”
Surprisingly, I had virtually ZERO freebie seekers.
In fact, most knew I was there about life insurance!
Sure, I gave out gift cards to respondents.
But, the card does not indicate a certain dollar amount. So I gave out $5 gift cards.
Believe it or not, you don’t have to invest a lot of money into these Walmart direct mail final expense leads.
Instead, you receive a quality lead at higher-than-average response rates.
In some markets, I’ve seen agents at 2% response rates in some markets.
The average response rate for most “life insurance” final expense mailer leads is 1% to 1.25%!
At the end of the day, these leads are high quality. You’ll have plenty of opportunity to write good business.
There are 3 vendors I recommend.
The first one is called LeadConcepts.
I like LeadConcepts a lot.
They’re a very good service-oriented direct mail final expense leads company.
Their prices are slightly higher than other vendors, but I like working with them tremendously.
They don’t have a fixed-price lead program, but they’re easy to work with, very responsive, and they’ve been very good for my agents.
Second, you’ve got Need-A-Lead.
Need-A-Lead is out of Idaho, and the guy who runs it is Brady Evans.
He offers a fixed-price lead that says life insurance on it.
As of 2020, depending where you live, average fixed-pricing is $31 to $35 per lead.
Keep this in mind.
If you get fixed-price direct mail final expense leads, you have to sign off saying you’ll buy anything additional above and beyond what you paid for.
If you end up in a situation where there’s 50 additional leads above your original order, you’re obligated to buy those 50 leads.
He will work with you on pricing and payment. But you have to pay for the extras.
Bottom line, a direct mail final expense lead campaign with Need-A-Lead may stick you with more leads than you know what to do with.
The third vendor I work with is my internal vendor.
They work with marketing organizations like mine, and offer fixed-price final expense direct mail leads.
They do a fantastic job. Can’t recommend them enough!
Additionally, I have access to age and income filters, and different final expense mailer leads options.
Final Expense Mailer Leads 101
In this section, I’ll spend a good bit of time explaining the “why” and the “how” about direct mail final expense leads.
Perhaps you’re new to selling final expense insurance.
Maybe you’re wondering how final expense direct mail leads actually works.
In the following section, I will cover in detail how a final expense campaign actually works.
Then, I’ll describe why final expense mailers leads are the best lead generation strategy in selling final expense.
How A Final Expense Mailer Lead Campaign Works
Let’s cover the basics on how final expense mailer lead campaigns work.
First, when I say “final expense mailers,” I’m referring to using business reply card mailers to generate interested prospects for final expense.
Scroll up a few sections to see real-life examples of final expense direct mail leads I like using.
The client receives our mailing, fills out the information requested, then mails back the card.
We receive it, then call on the prospect over the phone or in-person to set a face-to-face appointment.
Costs average between upper-$20s to mid-$30s per fixed price final expense direct mail lead.
If you’re purchasing on a per-thousand basis, around $450 to $490 per thousand final expense mailers.
How Payment Works
In most cases, you “front” the money for final expense mailer leads.
More specifically, you pay at the time of ordering the leads, not when you receive them.
And since it takes 3 to 4 weeks for most final expense mailer leads to return, you are “money in” 3 to 4 weeks BEFORE working any of those leads.
This means you can expect minimum between $2500 to $3000 invested over the course of 4 weeks before expecting to make any money.
If this is a burden, fear not.
This is where final expense telemarketing leads may come in handy (just spend time finding the right vendor).
Also, Facebook final expense leads are worth considering, too.
Both telemarketing and Facebook leads are cheaper ($12.50 to $20.00 a lead), and take 7 to 10 days TOPS to fulfill an order.
Many agents starting with my agency follow this starter strategy, making sales from less expensive leads before working up to direct mail final expense leads.
Why do direct mail final expense leads work so well?
There are several reasons.
No “Do Not Mail” List To Worry About
First, final expense mailers have no solicitation restrictions like telemarketing does.
Anybody we have information on within the typical ranges for direct mail final expense insurance leads gets mailed without government interference.
One BIG advantage to using direct mail?
Geographic lead saturation.
Simply put, agents generate MORE direct mail final expense leads in a smaller area than with telemarketing or Facebook leads.
With those leads, you have to cover 3x to 4x the geography to generate an equivalent number of leads.
This means more drive time between appointments, and less opportunity to scale your appointments to a high level.
More Engagement = More Interest
Second, engagement level with direct mail final expense leads is much higher than other leads.
Picture how people receive your final expense mailer lead.
Imagine Mildred for a second. She’s 70. She’s walking out to the mailbox, sees this card, and reads something that sparks her interest.
She sits down at the table, starts to read through the card, thinks about it and decides:
“I’ve been thinking about buying more life insurance. Maybe it’s time for me to do it.”
But there’s a potential problem.
Mildred sets the lead aside and works on another task.
BUT… she comes back to it, lets her husband read it and gets his feedback.
He looks at it and says, “Yeah, that looks good. Go ahead and fill it out and send it back.”
So she fills it out, walks it back out to the mailbox, and mails it back.
Psychology Of Final Expense Mailers
This example is how EVERY direct mail final expense lead submission happens!
Do you see how engaged your prospects are with mailers?
And note that no salesman or telemarketers pressured Mildred into replying.
It was her VOLUNTARY decision. There was AMPLE opportunity to throw the card away like she’s done already a hundred times before.
This psychology at play is why I love direct mail final expense leads.
This level of engagement means better recall rates when you call or door knock versus split-second decisions made on telemarketing and Facebook leads.
Bottom line, this is why direct mail is the premier final expense lead generation strategy.
Better engagement means better quality leads.
And that means more leads closed!
First Choice Among Top Producers
Virtually all top producing agents use direct mail final expense leads as their primary source of leads.
Brian Tracy said that success leaves tracks!
Further, he said the smart folks in the bottom 10% always ask the top 10% how to become top producers like them.
That’s the same for final expense sales.
Nobody is reinventing the wheel here!
Instead, smart agents getting started simply duplicate PROVEN systems of success in their own markets.
For leads, the BEST system to duplicate is direct mail final expense lead generation. Because that’s what virtually ALL top producers use.
Leverage Door Knocking
Speaking of door knocking your final expense leads, direct mail is fantastic, as you can SHOW the prospect her handwriting.
There’s no denying that!
This gives agents tremendous leverage in converting more final expense direct mail leads into appointments.
Having a physical piece of proof that they requested information eases the door knocking experience, since THEY are soliciting YOU!
What are the best practices of working direct mail final expense leads?
First, see EVERY single mailer lead within the first 7 days of receiving them.
The most successful producers do whatever it takes to get in front of these leads as quickly as possible.
And every single day that passes without seeing your leads increases the odds another agent will slip by, making the sale YOU should have made!
In this competitive market, time is of the essence.
You MUST work hard AND fast.
Consider Only Door Knocking Leads
New to final expense sales?
Consider only door knocking your final expense direct mail leads for maximal return on your investment.
Setting appointments by phone is a different skill set that takes more time to develop than door knocking.
When calling, you lack powerful communication tools like body language, eye contact, or shaking hands.
Access to these communication tools makes door knocking a higher conversion rate prospecting method than calling, as you only rely on words, tonality, and pacing.
Sell Face-To-Face For Best Results
Not sure if you want to sell face-to-face or do final expense telesales?
Consider starting this business selling face-to-face.
It’s easier for prospects to hang up on you than slam the door in your face. Many who are jerk-offs on the phone are kittens face-to-face.
And you can always door knock a lead after a prospect hangs up on you. Can’t do that selling over the phone.
Keep Uncontacted Leads
Keep all uncontacted direct mail final expense leads as “shelf life” is good.
I sell leads 6-12 months old and know other agents doing the same.
Keep aged direct mail final expense leads handy any time you rework an area.
Many times, they were simply tied up and they’ll treat the visit like they recently sent back the card.
Best Areas To Target Market
Picture a low income area.
Maybe you’re in an older neighborhood with single story brick homes.
Perhaps you’re in Small Town and Rural America. There’s single- and double-wides all over the place.
Or picture a metro market. There’s small row houses and subsidized housing.
ALL are areas with opportunity to sell final expense.
The reason is simple…
Poor people buy final expense!
In other words, folks with little to no savings and meager Social Security checks are our best prospects.
We need to target the higher opportunity areas that make sense to the kind of people that we’re going to sell to.
And anywhere there’s a lower income is an excellent market.
Worst Area To Target
Do not target middle- and high-income areas with direct mail final expense leads.
While there are many seniors living in these areas, they do NOT meet the low-income criteria, yet still send back the lead cards.
You’re probably asking…
“Why would middle class people send the direct mail final expense leads back?”
Sometimes it’s confusion. Other times it’s curiosity.
My experience is that this market cares about life insurance, but cannot justify buying more, since their savings amply cover final expenses.
I sure hope you got some value out of this article on final expense direct mail leads.
If you’d like to learn more about working in my national final expense agency, go here and review the free resources.