When discussing resources required to support social media, a colleague of mine came up with a neat concept. She said that the social media initiative of an insurer or broker should be thought of as the organization’s next ‘branch’. The amount of resources assigned should relate to the type of functions performed in the ‘branch’ and to the amount of revenue anticipated from the ‘branch’.
For example, if an organization only expected to support existing customers and not drive any new revenue, there should be ample ‘CSR’ and claims resources to support the normal service levels (e.g., responses expected within X hours/days).
However, if the social media initiative is expected to generate new sales and new customers, the resources must include ‘producers’ supported by marketing.
Regardless, the social media branch needs a senior member of the organization’s leadership team to be the ‘branch manager’, who will have authority and responsibility commensurate with size of the branch.
It goes without saying that all of the members of the branch staff need to know the community (be literate with social media) and be prepared to relate to the community as employees as well as ‘citizens’.
This approach seems to make sense. Do you have any experiences out there on this approach, or any others in how to organize a social media approach for an insurer or broker?