At least that’s the answer I give to most of the agents that ask me that question on a daily basis. Let me clarify: You can, but I think it’s the wrong approach.
Using social media to generate leads is like throwing a birthday party for your kid so you can give insurance quotes to the guests. One of my goals is to make it easy for agents get more sales with less effort and that’s why I’m trying to change the way agents use social media.
Social media IS NOT a lead generator… (not directly)
Social media CAN BE a marketing amplifier.
It can boost everything you’re already doing OUTSIDE of social media.
Let me explain with 15 ways to use social media to boost the traditional marketing you’re already doing:
1) Promote Your Events
You’re already hosting events in your community, right?
Why not use your social media channels to get the word out for more people? Not only can you tell everyone in your network, it’s also easier for them to share with theirs.
Create an event on Facebook and post about it on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google Plus.And here’s a tip: You don’t even need to be the event organizer!
Just create an event and explain all the details of the event. As long as the info is correct and you’re not taking credit for it organizers will appreciate the extra promotion. You can even buy Facebook ads really cheap to explode your exposure in the local region.
2) Identify Sales Leads
You already use certain life events as conversation starters about insurance, right? A good insurance salesperson’s ears will perk up when they hear about someone:
- Having a baby
- Buying a house
- Buying a new car
- Buying some other expensive thing
- Getting married or divorced.
- Starting a business
etc., etc., etc.
Where else do you see people talking about all these things? Your Facebook feed is an endless supply of “reasons to contact” people about insurance.
I’d bet 1 in 10 of the things people post on Facebook are reasons to contact and sales opportunities!!! If any of these things were mentioned in conversation you’d be all over it. Why are you letting it slip by on Facebook?
3) Hold Bigger Contests
You’re already holding contests to give away prizes and get sales leads, right? I’m not saying to scrap the in-person contests, buy why not couple your physical giveaway with an online one for the same prizes?
You’ll get double the value out of your investment!
There are apps you can use on Facebook to collect the contact information and it’ll be easier for people to get their friends to enter.
4) Get More Referrals
You’re already asking for referrals from every customer you can, right?
When you have a customer willing to refer someone they know, suggest they use their social media profile to make the recommendation. Depending on their relationship with that person, it may be much easier to recommend that way than through email, phone, or conversation.
The easier you make it for the referrer the more likely it is to happen, even if it’s just by giving them the idea to use social media to recommend you.
5) Go To More Local Events
You’re already attending as many local community events as possible, right? By using your personal and professional social media profiles to connect with as many local businesses and organizations as possible you’ll never miss out on a networking opportunity.
And with more advanced notice you’ll be able to get involved and play a visible role in more events.
6) Give Out More Schwag
You’re already giving promotional materials to customers and leads, right?
Next time you get something cool like pizza cutters or baby bibs, take a picture and post it to Facebook with some kind of call to action for getting one.
You could also encourage your clients to take pictures with your schwag and post it to their social media profiles.
7) Research Sales Leads
You’re already researching high-value prospects before and during the sales process, right?
Use Google or just do a search on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn for their social media profiles to learn more about their background, interests, and family. Heck, you can learn a lot just by putting a face to a name!
If you use Gmail, check out Rapportive. It’s a free tool that replaces those annoying sidebar ads with public social media information of the people you’re emailing.
8) Strengthen Networking Connections
You’re already giving out business cards to everyone you meet, right?
Why not couple that card exchange with a LinkedIn connection?
It’s free, easy, and completely normal to connect with anyone you meet and have a professional discussion with. Of course you can take the relationship as far as you want, but even just making the connection post-interaction will strengthen your bond.
9) Share Event Pictures
You’re already hosting and attending local community events, right? Why not take pictures of what’s going on and post them to Facebook afterwards?
You can tell anyone you meet to like your page the next day to see the pictures. I’ve even helped agents make business cards with just their FB URL to hand out to anyone who wants to see the pictures.
People can also tag themselves which will make your picture appear on the Facebook feed of all their friends.
10) Find More Introduction Opportunities
You’re already asking friends and family to introduce you to high-value prospects, right?
This might be a little too sneaky for you, but why not use LinkedIn to see who your connections are connected to in order to find potential high-value introduction opportunities? I know one agent who crafts an introduction message and sends it to the connecting person in order to make it as easy as possible for them. The connector just has to copy and paste.
11) Spread Your Seminar Message
You’re already delivering seminars about insurance related topics, right?
Well if you are, get someone to take a video of you delivering the information and spread it on your social media accounts.
You could even just record the audio and let people download the mp3 or upload the Powerpoint Slides only to a site like SlideShare.com and then link to the presentation from your social media accounts.
12) Repurpose Your TV Commercial
You’re already playing TV Commercials on local cable, right?
Well, okay maybe not…
But if you are, make sure to upload the same content to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.
And tag yourself if you upload it to Facebook so your personal connections will see it even if they don’t follow your agency page.
13) Share Your Customer Testimonials
You’re already collecting positive customer testimonials, right?
I hope so, because they can sell you a lot better than you can…
But anyways, try to get a video testimonial because that’s gold, but if you get something handwritten or emailed to you, snap a picture and share it.
Don’t copy and paste the text into a status because it won’t be as authentic and powerful.
Maybe you can even get the person who wrote it to tag themselves in your photo. That way all their friends will see they had great things to say about you.
14) Promote Important Agency News
You’re already creating press releases for the local media outlets, right?
Well even if not you could start.
When you hire someone new, start selling a new product, move, expand, win an award, host an event, partner with another company or anything else you feel like mentioning create a simple press release about it.
Post the press release to my favorite free press release website: PRlog and share a link to the published press release though social media.
It’s way cooler and more professional looking to share a published press release than to just send out the news in a status update.
15) Get More Positive Local Karma
You’re already volunteering in the local community, right?
Well don’t let it be a secret! Share pictures of you doing it on your social media accounts.
All the big carriers are doing it.
They take pictures of 15 employees building homes for the homeless and then post the pictures for hundreds of thousands of people to see.
I hope my description doesn’t sound negative, I think it’s great!
And Here’s What to Do Next:
1) Decide which of these ideas fit well with your current marketing and put them into action ASAP.
2) If you know another agent or sales manager who is marketing-strong and social-media-weak share this article with them!
Let’s make it happen flks!