Twitter 101 for Insurance Agents, part 2

twitter_logoIn our previous post about tweeting for insurance agents, we discussed the basics of setting up a Twitter account, how to brand it to your company, how to attract followers, etc.

This week we’re offering a few Twitter etiquette tips and unpacking a few other great things Twitter offers.

How much is too much?

So you’re up and running on Twitter. How often should you tweet? Great question. We recommend that you post updates to your Twitter page often enough that you are engaging people and contributing to conversations, but not so much that it’s becoming noticeably time-intensive. It’s not necessary to respond to every tweet you see (that could take days!), but more than a few times a week and less than 15 times a day is a pretty good measure to stay involved and offer timely, relevant insight.

Connect with Twitter users in your geographic area

Like most insurance professionals, you probably pay to advertise/market your service to families and individuals in your area. With Twitter (free!) you can use tools like Twellow or TwitterLocal (both also free!) to search for Tweeple (people who use Twitter) in your area or the area you choose. This is great for insurance agents because you may have multiple agency coverage areas and these services will let you find users in each of those areas.

Tracking and responding to tweets

In Twitter 101, part 1, we mentioned several services that will allow you to setup alerts based on what people are tweeting about. Once you’re tracking these topics and conversations, this may be a good opportunity to respond and offer feedback or advice. To respond to a tweet, click the arrow that displays at the right of the post when you move your mouse over it. See image below.

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Now you will type your message. There is a 140 character limit, so your message must be concise. Next, click the reply button. Once it’s posted, all of your followers will be able to view your response. To view replies to your posts, click the @[Your Twitter Name] button in the column on the right of your main Twitter page.

Twitter-to-go

The great thing about Twitter is that users have access to real-time news and commentary. But what about when you’re out of the office? Well, with mobile applications like TwitterBerry, Twinkle and Twittervision, you can take Twitter with you and respond to prospects on the go.

To tweet or not to tweet

As the world of technology and social media evolves and progresses, new communication tools will continue to come and go. Is Twitter here to stay or is the end in sight? No one can say.

While some don’t understand the purpose of nor see a need for Twitter, many professionals and businesses are finding it useful in conjunction with their marketing campaigns and/or customer service departments. The most important thing you must determine as you delve into Twitter is your purpose for tweeting. What are you trying to accomplish? Are you positioning yourself as an expert? Are you trying to connect with more consumers? Are you simply looking for a good place to find instant news and commentary?

Twitter will help you accomplish each of these. While use of this tool will vary from company to company and person to person, just remember to post regularly and offer a valuable,  transparent, authentic voice.

Have thoughts about Twitter and/or social media? We’d like to hear about them!

Follow the HometownQuotes Twitter feed at http://www.twitter.com/HometownQuotes

Follow our CEO Hunter Ingram at http://www.twitter.com/HunterIngram

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