Just about everyone these days has a social media profile on at least one platform. They use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and various other sites to connect and keep up with friends and family.
It's not only individuals who are using social media, though. Businesses have jumped on the bandwagon, setting up profiles to connect with their customers. Social media also allows these same businesses to expand their reach and find more of their target audience.
As an independent insurance agent or small insurance agency, you need to be where your customers and target audience are. Today, that place is social media. While conventional methods of lead generation, such as attending networking events and direct mail, can still be effective, you can reach more people with less money using social media platforms.
As with anything else you do for your insurance business, setting social media goals is imperative for your success. Those goals give you something specific to work toward and provide the roadmap you need to get there. You don't want to ignore or put off this process for your insurance social media marketing efforts.
Defining your goals will help point you toward the steps you need to take to meet your agency's needs. They can also help you to measure your return on investment (ROI). With specific goals, you can see whether or not your social media efforts are making a difference to your business. With a more data-driven approach, you can gauge what's moving the needle in terms of engagement, website traffic, and leads generated.
Are you stuck trying to figure out what types of goals you should be setting for your social media accounts? Here are a few ideas to consider that can help you move forward:
With a vast majority of people having at least one social media account, many of the individuals with whom you've already connected are likely on the same platforms you're using. If you look at your current contacts, you might find that there are tens, perhaps even hundreds, of people with whom you may not have connected with yet on social media. Don't miss out on those valuable connections.
And don't worry about the cost of importing contacts. Most social media platforms, including Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter, allow you to import a set number for free. Import all of your contacts from Gmail, Outlook, and your phonebook into your social media accounts. You may be surprised at how many connections you're missing.
As a business, you want to be on the same social media platforms as your target audience. At the same time, you're going to want to be active on your accounts, so try not to take on too much to where you may end up being overwhelmed. While you should have profiles on at least a couple of platforms, you don't have to be on all of them. Know where your audience is and where best to reach them.
When it comes to the insurance industry, Facebook and LinkedIn are great places to start. You can also have a lot of success on Twitter and Instagram with the right approach. Decide which platforms you want to focus on and delete any old business accounts you're not using anymore to avoid misleading potential new followers. Where applicable (like Facebook), make sure to open a business account so that you can leverage all of the fields that will be valuable for your followers to contact you.
Make sure that all of your information is complete and accurate on every platform you use. You'll also want to ensure your profiles look professional. Remember, your social media page might be the first contact a prospect has with you. Be sure that you use your real, full name and a professional photo as your profile picture. While a picture of your dog or a quick selfie can be tempting (after all, they're easy, and you may already have at least a few of them on your camera roll), save those for your personal pages. You should also include a brief bio that tells visitors who you are and what you have to offer.
One thing that people on social media love to do is repost (share) others' content. As a business, it's a simple and smart strategy to keep your name at the front of your followers' feeds. But it's not all you need to be doing to build your brand.
To establish yourself as an authority, you need to create and share your own content, too. Creating engaging posts around your niche(s) showcases your knowledge and awareness of the latest news and information regarding the insurance industry. What exactly does that entail, though?
Engaging content means that you take a fresh approach to the types of information you share on your social media pages. The thing is, every platform requires a slightly different approach. For instance, Instagram is visual, where Twitter uses the written word. Facebook is an excellent medium for both written and visual content. LinkedIn often has more success with a professional and often data-driven approach.
Another thing to keep in mind is that even though you're marketing your insurance business, you don't want to be too salesy on social media. You want to sell yourself without actually making a sales pitch. Instead, you want to educate and provide value for your followers. One thing to consider doing is writing a blog post and sharing that post with a small snippet about the post and providing a link for your followers to read it.
You might also talk about your own achievements occasionally, such as awards or new hires on your team. Or, maybe you can share the occasional engaging piece of information about your personal life, such as your hobbies, travel, and more that people can connect with. After all, social media is about individuals first. People, including those in your target market, want to connect with individuals, not businesses. Sharing some personal information with your audience makes you more relatable. It shows them who you are and what you're all about as a person. Just remember to strike a balance. Sharing some personal information is okay, but you want to avoid oversharing or making your business social media pages all about you.
Written posts and including images are excellent for engaging with your target market on social media. However, video content has become increasingly more popular in recent years.
Here are some interesting statistics to keep in mind. Video content on Facebook receives 59% more engagement than other types of posts. Tweets with videos attached get ten times more engagement than those without them. Videos on Instagram get the most engagement of any other form of content on the platform. Users on LinkedIn are 20 times more likely to share a video than any other type of content.
When it comes to posting video content, you have a couple of options. You can create and post a polished video, or you can take advantage of a platform's live streaming functions. With live streams, you can interact with your audience directly in real-time.
Again, keep your videos more informational and less salesy. You'll also want to make sure that any videos you create and share are topical and relevant to your particular niches.
For instance, you can talk about industry news if you sell health insurance or Medicare. You might discuss the differences between the various types of life insurance or the benefits of getting a life insurance policy. You could provide some tips and tricks for saving money on auto insurance policies. There is a wide range of topics you can cover within your niche that can help to showcase your knowledge and engage your audience.
Keep in mind that you may not be able to measure your return on investment from your videos. Your audience may watch them, but they may not necessarily be in the market for the types of insurance products you sell at the time. What your videos do, however, is allow you to stay at the top of their minds. As an already established trusted and credible source, your audience is more likely to come to you when they do need what you offer.
When it comes to social media for insurance agents, you should be an expert in at least one area of the industry. At the same time, you should offer some other products across different lines of insurance. You don't necessarily need to have the same depth of knowledge of these products as you do in your main area of expertise, but you should know a good bit about them to provide your customers with the quality of service they deserve.
Create content that focuses on your area(s) of expertise. That will help you build credibility and trust with your audience and establish yourself as an authority in that area. The more unique and engaging your content, the more your audience will start to think of you as a leader in your field.
And don't be afraid to try out different topics. Once you create a good amount of content, take a look back through what you've made and see what posts your audience has engaged with the most. You can use those posts as jumping-off points to create more new posts or provide updated information as time goes on.
If you're making posts to encourage your audience to take specific steps, include a call to action (CTA). You can't sit there and hope that your followers will take action. If there's something you want them to do, you need that CTA to guide them.
No matter what action you want your audience to take, your CTA should be specific. It will typically fall at the end of a blog post or webpage, but it can appear anywhere on a website or within a social media message.
Most calls to action range from a few words to a couple of sentences. Consider using phrases like:
One more tip: instill a sense of urgency in your audience. For instance, "get your personalized quote today" implies more urgency than "get a quote." Give the impression that there's a limited time in which they can contact you. That can motivate more of your followers to respond to more of your calls to action.
Your social media posts and interactions with your followers should be a reflection of your professional attitude and overall personality. Keep things positive. Avoid inflammatory religious, political, or racial comments, as well as anything that others might find offensive. Keep your business pages for business only.
If you have concerns regarding not being able to voice your opinion, create two accounts — one for your insurance business and another for your personal use. Your business account is where you share content, promote your agency, and make valuable connections to grow your agency. Your personal account is where you can share and say whatever you want, which is why you may want to keep your personal accounts private and limited to friends and family only.
When social media was new, more posts meant more engagement. Unfortunately, that old logic no longer applies. People spend a lot of time on various platforms these days, so over-posting can quickly cause your followers to feel fatigued or annoyed. So, what can you do?
Striking a balance is vital. You want to keep communication with your followers open and consistent, but you don't want to share so much that you come across as desperate. A once-weekly post isn't going to cut it either. The sweet spot is posting between three to four times per week. Sure, there will be days where you don't post anything, but that's okay. Analyze your posting data to identify patterns that work best for you.
Building and maintaining a social media presence can be time-consuming. You only have so many hours in a day. Trying to run your business, post to social media, manage other marketing campaigns, and live your life can become pretty hectic pretty quickly.
Fortunately, various social media software can make things a lot easier. Software like Sprout Social, Buffer, and Hootsuite all connect to your social media networks and allow you to cross-post across various platforms and schedule your posts. You can do all of this from one location, eliminating the need to log in to multiple accounts.
Social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn offer thousands of opportunities for businesses to join groups that focus on specific industries, topics, locations, and communities. Take advantage of them. Use the search bar to locate groups relevant to your target audience and the communities you serve where you can share applicable and helpful information.
Interacting with others in each group you join is imperative. If you only join the groups but don't participate, it'll be harder for people to learn more about your agency and everything you offer. It's also much more challenging to establish yourself as an authority in your industry. Don't be afraid to jump into conversations and add your unique insights. Just remember that you shouldn't post about insurance just for the sake of posting. Make sure that you provide something of value when you comment.
Running paid ads is completely optional, and it isn't necessary for you to be successful with social media as an insurance agent. Keep in mind that organic posts don't typically reach as many people as they used to. Therefore, you might want to consider setting aside some of your budget to boost your posts and leverage paid advertisements so that you can get your name in front of more people.
Now, while social media ads can be a powerful tool, they aren't a magical fix that will instantly increase your engagement and net you substantially more leads. They are an extra tool in your arsenal, though.
Creating an engaging brand on social media as an insurance agent isn't the easiest thing to do. Just remember, your presence on your chosen platforms is there to help people and bring value to their lives. It's also about what people should expect to see when they notice you've posted a new piece of content. You'll need to think long-term and remember to take note of what's working, as well as what isn't. That will allow you to make adjustments as necessary to increase your success.
One final thing: it will take time to become consistently engaging and grow your social channels. Don't get discouraged or lose sight of the bigger picture. Time, effort, and perseverance are essential.
Remember, generating leads through your social media pages will take some time. That doesn't mean that you need to sit around and wait for things to start happening and the leads to start pouring in. You can take action now while you wait for your social pages to take off with the help of Nectar.
Using Nectar, you can ensure a consistent flow of incoming real-time leads until you start generating them through your social media pages. Utilizing the easy-to-use online portal, you have complete control of your campaigns.
Nectar helps to ensure a quality, seamless experience for insurance agents and shoppers alike. Nectar matches customers with agents that best fit their needs based on the information they provide. You then receive leads that are more likely to convert. In essence, everyone wins.
Have you optimized your social media pages and started getting more active on them to start attracting more leads? That's great! While you're waiting for potential customers to start contacting you through your social pages, Nectar is here for you. Sign up to get started today!
This article reflects the features of Nectar as of the date of publication. Features are subject to change at any time. This article is meant for informational purposes only, it is not a guarantee that using Nectar will help you achieve specific business or financial results and is not intended to serve as the sole recommendation for any business financial decisions.