To leverage social media into their overall business strategy executives are considering implementing a multi-distribution initiative. As the number of social media users increases, this platform offers insurers another medium in which to interact with existing customers and prospects. According to recent research carried out by Capdegimi, social media is used internally for:
- Improving customer experience and branding
- Connecting with customers and agents
- Internal networking between employees
- Recruitment and agent development
It is important for insurers to monitor what is being said about their brand on social media sites. Customers who had a negative experience are much more likely to discuss their experience online, compared to a customer who had a positive experience. Monitoring conversations allows insurers to respond appropriately and mitigate any negative outcomes. When other customers and prospects see a particular brand engaging online, it initiates a feeling that the brand is willing to engage in conversation, even if the comments are negative.
Similar to multi-distribution, integrating social media with more traditional CRM channels is important. Occasionally, after engaging with a prospect on a social media site, you may want to have a conversation with them either to deal with a problem they are having, or to provide them with additional information. By obtaining an email address or phone number, the prospect can be contacted and information supplied promptly, generating sales leads for the insurer. In this day and age there is an expectation for these types of interactions to take place in real time.
There are numerous social media platforms available today. Facebook and Twitter are more suitable to customer and prospect interactions, whereas other platforms such as LinkedIn allow insurers to connect and engage with agents online to develop relationships. Other networks such as wiki or Salesforce Chatter can be used for internal conversations.
There are numerous ways in which insurers can use social media; it is only a matter of time before it is an integral part of the overall business strategy.