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Social Media for the Slow Social Learner

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I see you there, sitting in your office, reading that magazine article entitled something like “Use Social Media or Die”.  I know what you’re thinking:  “Maybe I can retire before I need to face this.”  I was just like you.   Then I read a report that made sense to me, and now I’m putting a plan in place that makes sense, too.  How did I do it?  Read on.  And let me know how you make out.

Accenture has recently published a very short, very readable, very pragmatic summary of what any insurance entity can do to get in the social media game.  It’s title is the most daunting part of the whole report: “Insurers and social media: vast potential, significant challenges.”  You can find a summary of key elements and a link to the full report on the Insurance-Canada.ca Social Media Page.

Here’s what this Social Luddite learned from the 25 minutes it took to read the 12 pages (I’m a slow reader).

There are specific, doable, and measurable objectives for incorporating social into my business.  Some are customer focused (customer acquisition, customer insight, and customer service).  Others are organization focused (improved collaboration, employee attraction and retention). I can use help with all of these in this market and business environment.

There are costs and risks with getting involved in social, but at the end of the day, I will have to be involved as people all around me are using social as part of their daily lives.  That’s why I was sitting and worrying in the first place.

I don’t have to dive into the deep end.  There is a phased approach I can take to ease my way in.  It involves business skills I already have:

  1. Listening. Insurance has taught me to be a very good listener.
  2. Engaging.  At least some of my clients have told me I can be very engaging.
  3. Optimizing  I’m a good manager and a pretty quick study when it comes to numbers.

There is a 4 step plan provided in the report that looks like good business planning, and only one of the steps has technology in it.  And it ends with two short case studies, and one of them looks like something my clients would really like.

And it ends with something I hadn’t thought about.  The report notes from the outset that insurance has not been a leading player in the world of social.  However, I know that people do talk about insurance – for good or ill – when it comes to premiums and claims.  And the report summarizes the intersection of these elements:

Insurers may never be among the “hot” social media brands based on the sheer volume of hits, but they can build engagement and generate customer interest at much higher levels than many other industries.

So I’ve got a plan in place and now off to post on a blog.  Give the report a read, and let me know what you think.  Drop a comment below.

 

 

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One Comment

Tammy Elizabeth Southin

As social media reaches its maturity stage, nice to see the focus is shifting from the initial thinking of “I’ll take all of the numbers that I can get” and replacing it with developing solid brand reputation and relationships. As the report indicates, ‘opportunity lies in the level of engagement, not in the sheer number of those engaged’ and for those willing to take the time, social media will be a strong component in the insurance industry’s tool-kit.

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