Health Insurance and Social Media don’t necessarily come across as a winning combination.
However, over the last year the social media team here at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan has worked hard to be just that – a best in class example of how social communications can work within a health insurance company.
In the last year our online community has grown over 1500%
And while it is great to see such tremendous growth, we realize that having a community this size means very little unless its members are actively participating with us. Our three Facebook Pages see an average between 30 and 37% participation rate (notice I didn’t use the word, “engagement”) which is above our industry’s national average by more than 50%.
Our blogs continue to see increased unique readership. Ahealthiermichigan.org saw a 73% increase of unique readership as we continued to refine our content based on the feedback we received from our audience. We also re-designed MichiganBluesPerspectives.com with a non-corporate look and feel. Working closely with our External Affairs, team Blues Perspectives experienced a 200% increase of unique visitors as we strived to help our members navigate Health Care Reform.
All of these examples lead to an important issue that continues to be overlooked as social media matures as a profession.
Social media strategies need to focus on how an organization plans to communicate with their audience through the content they create.
To do this successfully, a brand needs to focus on only one thing – content.
It is incredibly dangerous to assume that the content you create is something your audience wants. The existing social channels are not here to help us market to people. They are here to help us maintain and build trust with our current and potential customers. Trust leads to word of mouth, which leads to sharing of our content. Our content is our brand, and if people are willing to share that, then we are doing social media correctly.
On this Social Media Day, 2014, consider this:
The only “new tool” you need to concern yourself with, is your content.
This is just one of the many best practices we implement in our social media program here at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, and it has yielded the results shared in this post. We will continue to work hard on providing content that you want, and creating content that helps you. I thank you again for being a member of our online community, and I invite you to communicate with us as we continue to lead the industry in social media.
Photo credit: Health Gauge