Social media

1. First things first: Get in the game if you aren't already.

2. Implement a strategy: Know who you're trying to reach, what topics you want to talk about and the message you're trying to send.

3. Educate customers on insurance and allow them to share feedback.—Rick Morgan, Rick Morgan Consulting; Broomfield, Colorado

4. Think of social media as a relationship builder.

5. Don't hog the conversation. Use social media as a way to talk with and listen to others.

6. Post at least weekly, if not more.

7. Become active on multiple platforms: Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter and Google+ are all good options.

8. Use the platforms to inform clients of who you are and what you offer as a broker or agent.

9. Make your social media activity part of your everyday routine, like checking email and calling clients.

10. Vary your posts. Sharing a mix of text, photos, links and videos will keep your followers engaged. —Deborah Sternberg, executive vice president of Always Care Benefits in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Old school

11. Forget the group meetings, the conference calls, the social media posts: Meet with clients one-on-one. They still like it.

12. Send cards to your clients for birthdays, anniversaries or Christmas (via snail mail, not just email).

13. Always carry business cards with you (and give them out!)

14. Smile. Make eye contact. You know, be a friendly person.

15. Get up early. —F. George du Pont; employee benefits specialist, Aflac

16. Send thank you cards.

17. Be honest and transparent. —Daniel LaBroad, president and CEO, Ovation Health & Life Services, Inc.; Dallas

18. Value others' time. Show up early to meetings. Call when you say you will.

19. Always return calls and emails within 24 hours.

20. Don't forget the value of a phone call (versus sending yet another email.)

New school

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