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Getting the Most Out of Social Media

By Annie George


Posted on 28 Mar 12

At Neilson Marketing Services, parent company of ProgramBusiness.com, we perform a great deal of social media marketing on behalf of our Agency Tsunami clients. Recently, I read a white paper on getting the most from social media. The paper discussed five key best practices that are important to the success of social media, all of which we implement with our clients. I’d like to share these practices with you.

1. Look at the ways in which social media can help drive your profits. For example, use social media to see where consumers are talking about you, and determine which sites are more positive and negative. Also look at what consumers are saying about your brand, your insurance programs and services, and your competition. Are bloggers, journalists in your community talking about you and your agency, referring to your blogs, sharing your Facebook posts, and retweeting your tweets?

Take a look at how you provide customer feedback on-line. How does it compare to direct customer feedback from other sources? Are you responding immediately? The key is to create business processes whereby information from social media is translated into action. Customer complaints on-line should be funneled to a customer service rep immediately.

2. What are you expecting to get out social media? Define the “return” in your ROI. Do you have a tangible objective? Have you defined why you’re involved with social media? Also be sure you define the audience you’re targeting so you address issues that are relevant to them.  

3. Engage in a two-way conversation. Remember, it’s not about you…capitalize on what social media allows you to do – and that is to touch customers and interact in ways you couldn’t before. Engage customers with your brand on a personal level – use this as another way to become your customers’ trusted insurance advisor. 

4. Don’t focus on counting eyeballs. Instead look at what those eyeballs have done. Did they go to your website from Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Twitter, or your blog? Did they click through from the link you gave them? Did they download a white paper? Did they retweet, repeat comments, and share posts? And of course, did they fill out a contact form, make a purchase, recommend you to others?

5. Blend social media data with internal data such as information captured from call centers, surveys, customer service records and emails. Supplement this with external customer research, brand research and Web analytics to create an even richer view of the customer.


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