It seems that Independent Insurance Brokers and Agents have increased their usage of non-traditional methods (largely social media) in marketing efforts, but the vast majority have not taken the next step to measure the results.
About the Survey ….
For the second year in a row, Connecticut-based B.H. Burke & Co. conducted a survey of independent insurance agencies to determine activity in on-line marketing. (Catherine Kargas included results from last year’s survey in her post in this space last December.)
This year, 293 agencies, from 41 US States and Canada responded. Approximately 60% identified themselves as agency principals or managers. The balance represented IT, marketing or sales.
Survey Says …
The study suggests that social media is becoming somewhat more mainstream in agencies since the last survey. More agencies allow use of social media at work. However, one third of agencies still prohibit employees outright and another one third have some limitation (type of employ, restricted hours).
The survey noted that agencies see some overlap of non-traditional marketing (social and on-line) with traditional (advertising, direct mail, etc.), with respect to lead generation and brand recognition. However, significantly more agencies use traditional method to support building organizational image, while social media was the preferred vehicle to support relationship building, improving service, adding a new service channel, and research.
So How Does This Activity Measure Up?
While use of social seems to have inched up, it appears that the interest in measuring results of marketing – traditional and non-traditional – has not. Approximately 60% of respondents do not measure the results of either form of marketing.
In a cover letter that he sent with the survey results to his members, Jeff Yates, Executive Director of ACT, noted “The survey does reveal one huge opportunity area for the industry and that is to convince more agencies to measure which of their marketing dollars are bringing a return for them.”
Yates cites an article from Safeco’s Chuck Blondino indicating that agents evidencing consistent growth are those that track marketing results (see our post last month on this).
More Information on Social, Marketing and Measurement
We would encourage you to take the survey now, and examine the conference agenda, especially the Social Media Boot Camp on day one and Greg Purdy’s session, “Broker Challenge: Where are You on the Analytics Trail?”
And let us know what you think about the use of social in brokers’ offices. You could leave a comment below, Or, you could let us know at the conference n person. It would be very social of you.