Using in-person seminars and direct mail to grow your medicare business

Sarah Jacobson

Direct mail and in-person seminars are each incredibly effective ways to market your Medicare business. But by combining them together, Paul DaCosta shares how to create a powerful inbound lead engine for your Medicare agency. 

Paul is a Medicare agent in Augusta, Georgia, who has found success by targeting specific demographics through direct mail and inviting them to in-person educational Turning 65 seminars. Keep reading to learn how Paul has used these strategies to grow his business.

What makes an effective in-person seminar 

Paul started his Medicare agency in 1998. Since then the industry has changed drastically, but his strategy of hosting seminars has stayed consistent throughout.

Paul hosts seminars strategically located in hotels near his target customers. He focuses on providing a casual atmosphere and a comfortable experience for his customers. He also makes sure that the room is set up in a way that allows everyone to feel comfortable and not overcrowded. 

Paul makes his seminars follow the same script so they are repeatable and also records every single one of his seminars, so that he can share them with the carrier or CMS if there’s ever an issue. 

He keeps the seminar to a concise 30 minutes with about 10-15 minutes for questions. He doesn’t push his own services, but instead focuses on providing education and establishing his credibility. To remind clients of his contact information, he provides water bottles, notepads, and pens with his logo on it and encourages clients to take them home. 

Paul is a master presenter who has really honed his public speaking skills. He moves around the room and interacts with attendees to make sure that everyone is understanding the material and getting the most out of the experience. He even hired a professional slide designer on Upwork to polish his slides so that they’re easy to digest and look great. 

Paul sends a thank you note to everyone who attended the seminar, as well as a magnet for their refrigerator. By doing this, Paul is able to keep his name and contact information in front of the attendees. This helps to ensure that when the attendees are ready to make a decision, Paul is the first one they call. 

All of this yields impressive results. Each seminar has an average of 20-25 attendees and 13-14 of them will use Paul’s services when they turn 65.

Know your material and avoid Mondays/Fridays

One of the most important things to consider when planning in-person seminars is to know your material. Paul's advice is to make sure you understand the material you are presenting and are able to explain it clearly and concisely. This means practicing your material until you have it down, and anticipating questions from the audience. Additionally, by understanding your material, you can avoid common pitfalls such as going over time or not providing the necessary information.

Another important factor to consider is to avoid scheduling seminars on Mondays and Fridays. Paul has found that Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the best days for seminars. This is because people are more likely to attend on these days, as they are not as busy as Mondays and Fridays. Additionally, it is important to consider the time of day when scheduling a seminar. Paul suggests scheduling seminars for 6:30 or 7pm, as this allows people who are still working to attend. 

By taking these steps, you can ensure that your seminar is successful and that you reach your goals.

Using direct mail to market your seminars

You might be wondering, how do people learn about Paul’s seminars? That’s where direct mail comes in.

For direct mail Paul uses a list broker to target people who:

  • Own homes
  • Have an income of $40,000 to $45,000 a year
  • Have at least $150,000 in assets

This helps him find potential customers who are most likely to be interested in what he has to offer and who he can also cross-sell other services.

Next, he uses direct mail pieces to reach out to his target demographic. He writes his own copy and sends it to a mail house in California. He sends out multiple pieces of mail that are purely educational starting 6 months before someone turns 65. A few weeks before the seminar, Paul will send a piece of mail with an invitation to attend his Turning 65 seminar. All in, Paul spends about $12 per prospect on mailings. 

By the time he sends out the invitation to attend a seminar, the prospects are already familiar with his name and the services he provides. He also sends out a printed newsletter, which includes his picture, that keeps prospects informed of changes in Medicare and what they should be aware of when it comes to prescription drugs. 

This process of seminars and direct mail is repeatable and can be done in multiple locations where he sells Medicare.

Paul spends an average of $12 per prospect on mailings, but his acquisition cost to enroll a client in Medicare is only $36. 

Forming relationships with venues

One key to success when it comes to seminars is to form a relationship with the venue in order to get the best price and service. By letting the venue know that you will be doing multiple seminars, they may be willing to offer discounts or other incentives. This is particularly true in areas where business slows down in the wintertime. Paul has been able to get a consistent rate from his venue, regardless of the time of year. This is because he sends consistent business to the venue. 

When selecting a venue, it is important to think about the amenities that the venue offers. Hotels are well-equipped for presentations, as they have all of the necessary equipment. Libraries and restaurants, on the other hand, are not as well-equipped and require more preparation and setup. Additionally, it is important to consider the hospitality aspect of the venue. Hotels have coffee and other amenities, while libraries and restaurants do not. 

Paul's success is a testament to the importance of investing in long-term marketing strategies and education. By targeting the right demographic and investing in long-term connections, you can increase your sales and grow in a predictable way. 

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