9 Insurance Agent Social Media Tips That Are Total Bull Sh*t

Written by John F. Carroll on . Posted in Humor, Social Media

social-media-mythsThere’s no shortage of “experts” with social media marketing advice for insurance agents.

Too bad most of it is bull sh*t.

And since I see this BS every day I figured it be a good idea to point it out so you don’t step in it.

There’s a lot of reasons for all the bad advice out there, but it’s mostly based on a few bull sh*t assumptions:

  • Bull Sh*t Assumption #1 - If it works for Red Bull and Justin Beiber it’ll work for you.
  • Bull Sh*t Assumption #2 – Everything you read on Hubspot and Mashable is applicable to local insurance agents.
  • Bull Sh*t Assumption #3 - Consumers are dying to hear from their insurance agent on social media.
  • Bull Sh*t Assumption #4 – Insurance agents have nothing else to do but work on their social media accounts.

I don’t like to be negative and write articles like this, but as I see more and more “experts” regurgitating the same B.S. I worry that agents will start to follow bad advice if they hear it enough.

Here’s 9 of the stinkiest BS tips I’ve heard about social media for insurance agents. And if you can think of any others you’ve heard, please share for everyone else in the comments below.

(By the way, if you’re offended by reading the word bull sh*t… too d*mn bad.)

1) Follow a Consistent Posting Schedule

That’s Bull Sh*t.

For 9 out of 10 insurance agents who follow a posting schedule it just results in social media posts that are irrelevant, boring, and ignorable.

Forcing yourself to post something just because it’s Tuesday at 2:10 is a recipe for bad posts.

There’s NO advantage to regular posting if nobody’s listening.

It’s just like real life, if you’re always opening your mouth to speak with nothing to say people will stop listening.

Do I follow a posting schedule? Yes.

But my situation is different from most insurance agents. My followers look forward to my newest posts and many of them will tune in just to see the latest at the expected time. If you can say that about your followers then follow a posting schedule.

Here’s what to do instead:

Post when you have interesting relevant stuff to share and consider setting reminders at certain times of the week to think about posting if AND ONLY IF you have something good to share.

marketing-myths-for-agents

2) The More You Post, The Better

This is complete Bull Sh*t.

I’ve read this tip in every single “How to respond to declining Facebook reach” article I’ve read in the past 6 months and it’s really bad advice for insurance agents.

It’s like telling a producer with a 1% closing ratio who wants to make 10 sales he just needs to quote another 1,000 prospects.

If your posts aren’t reaching enough people it’s because you have nothing of value to say.

Speak less often and say better things.

3) Facebook is Limiting Your Reach To Get You To Buy Ads.

Yup. It’s Bull Sh*t.

It is true that Facebook isn’t showing posts to as many of a page’s followers as they did a year or two ago, but they can’t.

There’s too many posts.

And Facebook decided that rather than showing users the most recent posts they would show them the best posts.

And it’s a good thing they decided that because otherwise people would stop using Facebook and we’d all have to learn another new platform.

The truth is that it’s not Facebook that’s limiting your reach, it’s you.

Post less often but post stuff people will actually engage with.

And when you post something with good engagement (likes, comments, shares) buy ads to get it in front of more eyeballs.

4) Ask Questions to Get User Engagement

bad-marketing-adviceOkay… 50% Bull Sh*t.

This one’s not totally wrong, but the reason I have to call bull sh*t is because I see a lot of agents asking questions on FB who don’t get any responses!

It looks pathetic.

You can’t just ask questions. It’s not that simple.

You need these three things for it to work:

  1. An active audience that you’re confident will answer your question.
  2. A few comments from your staff’s personal accounts to get the ball rolling.
  3. And most important, you need a question people will get some value out of answering.

It’s easy for Allstate to get responses when they ask a question to their 400,000 fans but that doesn’t mean it’s going to work for an Allstate agent with 40 fans.

5) It Doesn’t Matter How Many Fans You Have

Bull Sh*t. Yes it does.

It’s funny how the only people I ever hear saying this all have thousands of fans already.

I agree that thousands of fans who aren’t engaged with your agency are worthless, but it still sucks to have a Facebook page with 31 fans.

It’s social proof that your page (and indirectly your agency) isn’t worth connecting with.

And advertising to your fan base is way cheaper than to non-fans.

DON’T BUY FAKE FANS. I’m not saying that.

But DO read this article to boost your number of legit, relevant, local fans.

education-marketing-results

6) You Need to Be on INSERT LATEST SOCIAL NETWORK HERE

Bull Sh*t.

Pinterest, Instagram, SnapChat, What’s next?

It doesn’t matter because everybody’s on Facebook.

Get really good at Facebook before you worry about the next big thing. And after you’ve gotten really good at Facebook, take the time you’d spend learning the next up and coming social network to just get better at Facebook instead.

What’s that? All the teenagers are leaving Facebook for FlooshyBoo?

Who cares? They’re teenagers!

7) Every Nth Post Should be a Sales Post

Forget this Bull Sh*t.

I’ve heard a lot of the social media “gurus” say you need to do mostly posts where you’re “providing value” and then every 4th or 5th or 78th post should be a sales post.

I don’t completely disagree with this idea, I just don’t think it translates well to insurance agents because they often read it as:

“Share 3 articles about life insurance and then post your phone number and ask people to call for a quote.”

I think you can sell in EVERY post about your agency, but you have to do it under the radar. Read this article for 18 ways to sell without putting people off.

8) You Should Post Helpful Information About Insurance

bad-advice-for-agentsAbsolute Bull Sh*t.

People don’t give a sh*t about insurance 99.99% of the time.

And they sure as sh*t don’t want to read about it between pictures of their cousin’s wedding and their buddy’s new Mustang.

When’s the last time you saw Buzzfeed posting about getting lower car insurance rates?

9) Do What The Big Brands Do

That’s Bull Sh*t.

You’re not a big brand. You’re a local person.

And if people wanted to see airbrushed stock photos of model families running on the beach they can follow the big brands.

And buy directly from them.

Be yourself. Have personality. Engage with your local community. Be real.

The more your posts look like the other posts in your fans’ newsfeed the more attention and engagement you’ll get.

Wrap up

Don’t believe everything you read or hear about social media because most of it comes from people who are just trying look smart.

Most of them don’t care about helping you get results (or even know how).

And if you like it when I expose the B.S. like I did in this article make sure to click the like button and share it with another agent who’s drinking the Kool-aid and not seeing results.

Because that’s bull sh*t.

Hope this helps,
John

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John F. Carroll

John F. Carroll is the founder and CEO of InsuranceSplash. For years, John has consulted insurance agencies with internet marketing and sales strategy and he is dedicated to making insurance marketing easy and effective for all insurance agents. If you're an agent, connect with John on LinkedIn, he wants to connect with you!

Comments (12)

  • Logan

    |

    If you’re gonna type sh*t that many times you might as well just say shit. *ucker

    Reply

    • John F. Carroll

      |

      Not so sure the last word of your comment was needed…but I’ll take it all into consideration for next time. Thanks!

      Reply

      • Paul Doyle

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        I thought your last name was Carroll, not Tucker ; )

        Reply

  • C.ARVIND KUMAR

    |

    hello…i am insurance advisor for lic of india…i want to do good business but could not able to make it…pls help me how to do more business and become rich

    regards

    Reply

    • John F. Carroll

      |

      Hi C.Arvind, I don’t usually do consulting or provide services to overseas clients so my first tip would be to start by reading all the other articles on this blog. Can’t guarantee they’ll make you rich but there’s a wealth of free info here. Thanks, John

      Reply

  • Tracy

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    So what do we post about if not occasionally about insurance?

    Reply

    • John F. Carroll

      |

      Fair question. :) I took an extreme position in this piece to prove a point, but I don’t think you should NEVER post about insurance, after all it is the business you’re in. I think the takeaway is that anything you post about insurance needs to be REALLY interesting to non-insurance people otherwise you’re just going to turn away your followers. As much as possible, I recommend posting about real people, whether it’s your employees, business connections, customers, etc. because thats’ what Facebook is all about. I think this article may give you some ideas of how to post about insurance in a more meaningful way than just sharing articles from Insurance Journal: http://www.insurancesplash.com/blog/selling-insurance-social-media/ Thanks for the great question!

      Reply

  • Brian

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    Good information. Here’s a lesson learned the hard way. I posted a copy of my referral flyer on my agency Facebook page. That evening my 24 year old son showed me my post on his iPhone and laughed because it was so small that you couldn’t read it without a magnifying glass. Didn’t think about my posts being viewed on a mobile device. Now I do!

    Reply

    • John F. Carroll

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      Great story, I think we’ve all felt that way after posting something on social media. I know I have.

      Reply

  • Heather Overbay

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    Ha! I like your style. I’ve read a few of your posts. I transplanted from selling cars to selling insurance. I thought that my skills would transfer over seamlessly. Mostly it does, but it takes a lot more to get people to buy a piece of paper than a shiny new car. I like that your information is geared toward insurance directly rather than just general sales tips for those new to the industry who already have a sales background.

    Reply

    • John F. Carroll

      |

      Thank you very much! Good luck selling insurance. I have always said that car salespeople make great insurance producers and I’m sure you’ll prove me right.

      Reply

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