I didn’t know what to expect from my first Cambridge National Conference. I knew I was there to ensure a successful conference and a great experience for our rep-advisors, and I figured I’d have some good discussions about social media.
Little did I know that in her President’s Address, Amy Webber would encourage all 825 rep-advisors to seek me out if they had questions or wanted advice about social media – and boy did you! I was fortunate to have dozens of conversations about everything from how to get started with Socialware to using LinkedIn to generate leads.
Then on Saturday morning at 8:15 am, we had a full house to hear Kim Gaxiola of Gaxiola Financial, Melissa Sturgis of Lawing Financial, and Shane Westhoelter of Gateway Financial Group share stories of how they’ve used social media to successfully meet business objectives.
Every conversation and question gave me much more food for thought around what “getting social” means at Cambridge. Here are my key takeaways:
- More Information Required – Although we offer a wide variety of comprehensive, complimentary resources we could offer additional, even more specific guidance – particularly around how rep-advisors can effectively use LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter once profiles have been created. As an immediate next step we’re partnering with Practice Management to conduct a new TRAIN webinar on December 7. Be on the lookout for details soon – we hope to also introduce our Social Media Support Team during the session so you can contact this team directly as your primary resource for getting started in social media (contact firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Success Breeds Success – Attendees were energized after hearing rep-advisor successes. Stay tuned as we pull those and other insights together into a “best practices” advisor guide we will publish later this year. In the interim, here are a few to whet your appetite:
- Client Service – one rep-advisor used Facebook during the volatile market over the summer to keep her clients updated with her perspective. This deepened her relationships and decreased the number of phone calls/emails she typically receive from clients.
- Research – another rep-advisor uses LinkedIn and Facebook to conduct in-depth research on new hires, potential new recruits, and even prospective clients. If knowledge is power, social media is like having a DeWalt power tool in your back pocket.
- Lead Generation – another rep-advisor shared a story about what they call their “Hat Program.” In the past, the rep-advisors in her branch would make cold calls, track down likely prospects, and then try to find out what college the prospect attended. The rep-advisor would then create a custom hat at lids.com with the prospect’s college logo on the front and his or her name on the back. The hats have a little note asking the prospect to accept their call, when they call. And now, due to the amount of information found in LinkedIn, those calls result in a meeting with a new prospect every time. Plus LinkedIn has decreased research time by about 50 percent!
National Conference was really a success for me, as I was able to answer many questions that helped to move social media efforts forward, jump-start social media efforts for those reticent to start, and to learn so much from rep-advisors in attendance.
For those of you I talked with at National Conference, do you feel like you’re better positioned for success?
As always, I am looking forward to hearing from you and learning more about how you’re making your mark on social media!