I get it. You’re busy – really busy. You hear from everyone (including us at Aartrijk) that you need to take advantage of all the new “social” tools. You’re probably tired of hearing that you need a blog, you need to be active building and engaging your Facebook community, you need a business profile on LinkedIn and Google +, you need to tweet every day, and now you need to have a Pinterest account. You may be protesting, “Enough!”
Yet, when you listen to agents Ryan Hanley and Chris Paradiso (there are many others) who point to more than 20 percent revenue gains directly attributed to social initiatives, you know you want to be doing something more with social media.
Yes, you are busy. You don’t have time to be doing all this social media stuff, much less figure out exactly how to start and/or create an effective strategy that you can realistically implement. You’re not alone. While there is no silver bullet or magic wand for turning your firm into an overnight digital marketing wonder, here are some industry resources that I have found helpful, informational and educational in creating and implementing social and digital marketing plans. A quick Google or YouTube search will reveal many more resources.
- Aartrijk. OK, so this is a bit self-serving. But we have lots of experience and are really good at helping insurance firms create successful social media strategies and supporting tactical implementation. We see this as a key component of a comprehensive brand strategy.
- Project CAP. This is an industry initiative to expand independent agents’ visibility in the online community. Part of this initiative is a selection of digital marketing program offerings designed to help agents regardless of current (even nonexistent) online activity level.
- ACT. The Agents Council for Technology is dedicated to promoting use of the most effective workflows and technologies for independent agents and brokers. The ACT website is a resource rich in educational articles, reports and recorded webinars. For example, it offers a comprehensive guide for creating an agency social media policy. There is also a recorded webinar on “Measuring Your Social Media Success.”
- Insurance Journal “On Point” podcasts. This is a series of interviews that Peter van Aartrijk and I record. We often tackle social media topics. A recent installment, “On Being a Carrier’s Social Media Director,” is an interview with Katie Peet, social media director for State Auto.
- Reading and engaging online with social media thought leaders, including Brian Solis, David Armano, Amber Naslund and Liz Strauss. All of these folks are visionary while remaining firmly grounded in the practical. They understand business first and are social rock stars second.
- Authoritative sites including Mashable, Fast Company, ReadWriteWeb and Social Media Examiner. Use Google Reader to subscribe to feeds from the sites.
Busy? Yes. But with all this available help, there are no more excuses. It’s time to ramp up your social activity.
On a different topic, are you challenged to find and keep qualified staff? If so, check out WAHVE – Work at Home Vintage Employees. This is truly a unique staffing solution and resource.
One more note: My favorite new iPhone app is MobileDay. It eliminates the need to remember codes, and it provides one-touch dialing into conference calls.
Please comment below and tell me what resources you find helpful. Where do you go to get informed, educated guidance or hands-on help?