It seems like social media is the boogie man of technological advancement to many insurance professionals. I talk to around 30 insurance professional everyday from whom I hear things like “why would I use Twitter”? “Facebook is something my kids use”, and “I don’t think my clients are using the internet to find us…they’re too sophisticated”. The truth of the matter is most people are using search engines to find and, or verify information. If I receive a referral to a professional like an attorney or CPA the first place I go to verify that information is Google. If my initial questions about the firm are satisfactorily answered by the information available on their web site, or social network sites, then I will follow up accordingly. The point is that large account clients are checking you out on the web before they are calling you. If you don’t believe that, then ask them. Think about your own search habits as well because theirs are probably not much different.
Ok well what does that have to do with social media? Great question. Social media is the great complement to your web presence. It’s a means to communicate with the masses and a great tool for insurance marketing. Karen Furtado of Strategy Meets Action (SMA) gave an excellent example in her recent interview with Annie George of Programbusiness.com Here is what she said…“Social media is playing a role in how we communicate. Agents and insurers need to provide notification to a large base, and social media is perfect for this. The Tennessee flood earlier this year is an example of how effective social media is in getting information out to as many people as possible in real time. An agent or carrier can send out a tweet on Twitter and provide a large number of people information about shelters, claims handling, etc. It’s an excellent mass communication tool during emergencies, a great vehicle for push communication, and can serve as valuable resource for the community.” This is only one example of how social media can be used as a tool for your business. If you don’t have an effective internet marketing strategy that includes social networking, you’re missing out on the biggest thing that’s happened in communications since Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone. I’d be interested in your comments.