Social Media and Online Marketing � What’s the Real Deal?

A short and objective survey of what insurance agencies are currently doing in the online world

By Jason Hoeppner, CIC, Consultant, B. H. Burke & Co., Inc.

(Posted by ACT: “Social Media & Online Marketing Survey Results

This survey, conducted in late 2011 by the agency consulting firm B.H. Burke & Co., provides excellent data on the mix of independent agency traditional and nontraditional marketing approaches, including the extent to which they are using particular types of social media, have coordinated marketing plans and are measuring their marketing R.0.I.. “)

Often when I speak with an agency owner, COO, or marketing manager about social media, I get asked about the results other agencies are seeing, in particular their return on investment (ROI). (I’m sure for the most part they’re seeking this information to help them make an informed decision on whether to invest in these new marketing methods, but I sometimes suspect it may also be a defensive question to justify not delving into the topic further.) As a result of lacking good solid data to provide an answer, I decided to put together this survey to learn what industry people were doing in online marketing with social media. I’m not making any recommendations in this report, just presenting the results for you to use as you see fit. With that being said, the following three findings were the most eye-opening to me:

  • More than 60% of those of you who responded are not measuring the return on investment of your current marketing efforts! So until you do, why ask about social media’s ROI? (OK, that was an editorial comment.)
  • Close to half of respondents who are not using social media will start to do so within a year.
  • Of those who responded, a bit more than 60% do not have a coordinated marketing plan of any kind.

Our survey received responses from 293 agencies across 41 states and Canada. Just about 60% of respondents identified themselves as agency principals or management. Another 40% or so said they worked in IT, marketing, or sales. Throughout the summary that follows, the term nontraditional marketing encompasses both social media and online marketing.

Read the eight-page summary here.

About B. H. Burke & Co.

This survey was created, evaluated, and the report written by Jason Hoeppner, CIC, an independent agency consultant at B. H. Burke & Co., Inc. of Westbrook, CT. You can learn more about us at