Learn how to disarm your client with these rapport building tips that rely on manners, honesty, and transparency.

When getting to know your insurance leads and clients, relationship building or rapport is a critical soft skill that can lead to a sale. Rapport includes building respect and understanding between you and your client. Trust is not an event, it’s a process and you begin building trust through initial conversations and meetings. Many of the rapport building tips may sound like grade school manners but there is a little more nuance than just being polite.

There will always be a natural resistance from people who think your sole intention is to get their money. Building a rapport with your clients helps them see your passion for the products as well as your personal commitment to doing right by them. Here are seven rapport building tips to make customers feel special and get you your next sale.

rapport building tips - be on time

Be On Time

This one seems like a no-brainer. Whether you’re meeting in person or have a scheduled phone call, being punctual is a great first impression in building a good rapport. When you show up on time you’re demonstrating a base level of respect from which to build on. Courtesy like this is non negotiable when working with your clients and it won’t go unnoticed.

rapport building tips

Prepare for Your Calls/Meetings

Do your homework before a call or meeting and have a plan in place for what you want to discuss with your client. If you plan on reviewing material (policy information, quotes, rates, etc) be sure to send a copy to your client ahead of your meeting or call so they can do their homework too and not feel caught off guard. Rapport building tips like this one go a long way in showing respect for your client’s time.

rapport building tips

Restate or Reflect Your Customer

A great listening tool and soft skill is to restate or reflect your client’s ideas and thoughts throughout a meeting. If a client expresses their concern, it’s good to say “It sounds like XYZ is a real concern for you and your family, and that makes perfect sense.” And then pivot to how and why your products/offerings can suit their needs and address their concerns.

rapport building tips

Avoid Overpromising

Once you get the conversation started, it can be easy to want to promise your client the world. You want to keep their interest and get them excited, so you may have the urge to fib or withhold the complete product or policy details. The best rapport building tips involve honesty and transparency. Go over the fine print and make sure they understand what they are agreeing to. Most clients will appreciate your honesty. Even if they decide not to purchase that particular product from you, you’ve now established yourself as someone to trust for future purchases.

rapport building tips

Mirror Your Prospect

Out of all the rapport building tips, this one is one of the easiest to implement. The general advice is to do whatever your client does.

Physically: If your client is leaning back with arms folded, you should lean back too. If your client leans forward, follow suit. Small gestures and body language work to establish an initial intention and connection.

Energy and tone: It can be off-putting If your client is soft spoken and lower energy and you enter the conversation at a much louder volume with high energy. Try to gauge where your client is at and mimic their energy and tone.

Word choice: Does your client talk with a more folksy style? Maybe you have a client who prefers a laid back vocabulary and uses more slang. Whatever the case, try to meet your client where they are in terms of vocabulary. Doing so will make you feel familiar to them and is one of the great rapport building tips to consider.

rapport building tips

Show and Tell Your Credentials

A nice way to build rapport with your clients during a first conversation is to tell them your credentials. If you’re meeting in person you can even pull out your insurance license. Tell your clients how you got into the business and why it’s important for you to get the best possible rates and products for your clients. If you have any stats or awards to brag about, do it confidently and then move on to getting to know your client. If you drop your credential and other information into conversation it establishes you as an industry expert and an authority on the subject matter. This will be the foundation of trust you build with your client.

rapport building tips

Show a Photo or Talk About Your Family, or Your Pet

If you’re in person and have a photo of your family or pet by your desk, bring it up in conversation and show the photo to your client. Even if you’re just on the phone, talking about your family or pets is a great tactic to humanize your connection with the client, share similar stories, and disarm them from thinking it’s just another sales call.

Rapport building can be time consuming but a strong client relationship will lead to repeat business and referrals. Make time for your clients by letting HBW Leads handle your lead generation. Learn more about how the technology and insurance experts at HBW Leads can get you double-verified unique leads to fill your sales pipeline so you can focus more on your client relationships.