Monthly Archives: February 2011

Social media trends for 2011

Agencies can use their experience with social networks to plan ongoing efforts.

There has been steady growth in the use of social media within the insurance industry over the past year, and the next 12 months promise more of the same. More insurers and agencies will be jumping on the bandwagon. And many not yet participating are considering such a move. What will drive more and different social media participation in 2011, however, will be increasing competitive pressures and greater regulatory scrutiny.

There will, no doubt, continue to be the introduction and breathless promotion of new networking and content sites, upgrades to Facebook and Twitter and improvements in social media monitoring software; however, there are six broader trends to watch.

Social Media Can and Must Be Measured

measuringSocial media does generate measurable value, however only if someone takes the time to actually measure the activity of a company’s employees, agents and policyholders and then compare it their competitors.

I am amazed at the number of companies who believe that monitoring is nothing more than checking their Facebook page for posts, And by measuring, I do not mean checking to see whether or not the number of followers or friends on your site is increasing.

Aside from just reading the posts and tweets and blogs from other companies, agents, and consumers, you should also measure the activity over time. Social media measurement is far more than totaling up the number of posts and tweets and checking the increase in traffic to the corporate website. There are literally dozens of metrics that can provide clues as to how your social media activity stacks up to the competition and what you can do to make it better. These include knowing what topics generate the highest traffic and what time of day produces the most posts. Think of how that information could be used to craft more effective sales pieces.

Monitoring and measuring is also not something you can do every now and then. A company’s activity must be monitored everyday and measurements should be taken once a week.