What's the difference between prospecting and marketing activities for insurance agencies?

Prospecting activities are intended to stir up interest among prospective buyers. Marketing supports prospecting efforts by offering information, resources, and social proof to prospective buyers.

Prospecting and marketing activities may seem one and the same, but in fact, they are two different types of activities. Let’s go into further detail about the differences.


Salespeople engage in regular prospecting activities as part of their job. They need to get the attention of potential buyers and allow the two organizations to see if there is a fit for doing business together. Prospecting activities are ways to engage with people in a 1 to 1 situation that can lead to conversation, exchange of ideas, and potential interest.

The goal of prospecting is to have a conversation with a potential buyer and interest them enough that they want to learn more about the salesperson and the company.

Prospecting activities can include: 

  1. Asking for introductions from clients or centers-of-influence (COI)
  2. Connecting with people on social media platforms
  3. Calling on the phone
  4. Meeting people in-person at events or visiting their office
  5. Sending introductory emails or letters


Marketing activities play a key role in answering the “right fit” question. When prospective buyers learn of a salesperson or a company, they will often look up the company or person online. A search will typically lead to the company website and LinkedIn profile. Both are marketing vehicles and provide opportunities for the company to share more about themselves, their team members, their philosophies, and how they work.

When reading information on the website or on a LinkedIn profile, buyers can gain insight into the company, the way they think, and the way they do business.

Readers are also able to see how the company or salesperson interacts with others through their social profiles. This provides social proof buyers seek out as a type of unspecified referral system. If readers like what they see, they may read more and choose to follow or subscribe to resources the company makes available.

The goal of marketing is to support the sales team’s prospecting efforts by providing potential buyers with additional information and displaying social engagement. Marketing activities can pique the interest of potential buyers enough that they want to continue engaging with the salesperson.

Marketing activities can include:

  • Company website explaining how they work with clients
  • Social posts educating readers on topics the agency engages in with clients
  • Events providing networking and educating clients and buyers on relevant topics
  • Emails providing invitations to events and sharing educational materials
  • Content offering readers additional information on a relevant topic in the form of infographics, ebooks, videos, blogs, etc.

While these activities are different, both go hand in hand to ensure a healthy pipeline and a thriving business.