Twitter is an incredibly valuable, vastly underutilized social media channel in the insurance industry.
And that’s saying something, considering insurance firms underutilize social media across the board.
You can’t go a day without hearing predictions of Twitter’s impending demise, but agencies that ignore Twitter’s potential do so at their own peril. The platform is a powerful tool for sparking meaningful conversations with influencers and prospects.
The platform provides a great way to share and curate thought leadership content, and it’s a more personal way of connecting with people than emailing them cold.
Follow these 4 tips to use Twitter effectively:
1. Get involved in real-time conversations. Follow popular hashtag campaigns, and respond to what other users are saying about trending topics. Quote and attribute insightful ideas that appear in your feed, and contextualize discussions by linking to articles you find useful.
This kind of Twitter participation is especially important when you attend industry events that encourage attendees to tweet using a particular hashtag. You miss big opportunities if you opt out of those conversations.
2. Curate content from organizations you respect. The beauty of social media is that it doubles as a curation and content creation tool. You don’t have to create original content in order to have impact.
You gain credibility through both publishing and sharing, so comment on other companies’ content, and retweet them. Ask your followers for their thoughts to jumpstart conversations within your industry circle.
3. Use lists to manage your interactions. The volume of information on Twitter can be overwhelming, so use Twitter lists to organize your consumption. The list function allows you to split the people you’re following into channels based on their industries or types of information they share. Segment the users you follow by topic, and check out lists on other accounts to find new accounts to follow. It’s a good way to identify new influencers in your space.
Lists also help to get the attention of people you want to meet. Know of an HR person you’d like to talk to? Boost her ego by adding her to an “HR Experts” list. This puts you on her radar and gives her account visibility. Having a public list of this nature signals that you’re someone who pays attention to HR influencers and has the pulse of the industry.
4. Leverage your team’s social accounts. Your employees can act as powerful distribution channels for company announcements, but don’t limit them to brand mouthpiece roles. Encourage them to publicly celebrate projects they’ve launched, and let them offer insights into the company culture via Twitter and other platforms.
Some employers require staff members to create professional social media accounts, but allowing people to use their personal accounts to comment on work topics brings a more genuine tone to the conversation.
5. Coordinate social media posts. Cross-post your Twitter content to LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, and Glassdoor when possible. Just remember to format correctly for each of them, as each channel will have a slightly different audience. Cross-posting is a great way to give your SEO a boost.
Don’t break up sentences on Twitter for the sake of sharing automatically to Facebook. Twitter users expect to get all of the information they need in 140 characters, and they’ll click your link if they want to learn more. Package your content appropriately for each social forum.
6. Don’t use your Twitter feed as a running advertisement. Your social media accounts aren’t simply venues for pushing ads. Leverage the paid ad functionalities, but don’t inundate your followers with promotional content. Nobody likes a narcissist.
If you’re ever in doubt about what types of posts to create, look to the brands you admire. Why do you follow them? Do their short, funny tweets entertain you throughout the day? Are they constantly publishing and linking to insightful content? Identify what works for them, and emulate them in a way that’s authentic to your company.
The secret to quality engagement is knowing who your audience is and what you hope to accomplish. Focus on sharing knowledge and driving value, and social success will follow.