Health insurers are increasingly embracing social media to connect with customers

Webwire.com reports that Health Insurance Finders has just launched a blog designed to give consumers more social options for learning about health insurance choices. The following was taken from Webwire.com’s report:

The blog has many web 2.0 features, giving visitors a wider variety of interactive tools and sharing capabilities. Users are given the opportunity to bookmark and share the information directly from the blog using the Add This Toolbar. The blog layout includes the opportunity to stay up-to-date with new posts via RSS subscription.

“Our blog will offer real value to our community of users,” said Grace Della, VP of Online Marketing. “We aim to encourage participation and discussion between consumers and health insurance professionals by allowing comments in each and every post”

The launch of the blog is a stepping-stone in preparation for the release of their educational videos. Health insurance related videos will be a series of many short video clips that will help consumers better understand health insurance industry topics.

We are in an era where consumers are extremely hungry for information and answers on complicated healthcare issues. Anything that brings transparency to the system will likely be welcomed by consumers.

Personally, I really like the idea of using a blog to let consumers interact directly with professionals. This sort of community is virtually impossible without the Web, and it’s a great example of how a blog can be used to connect two groups of individuals who would otherwise never meet and certainly not interact.

Link: Health Insurance Blog

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  1. #1 by Andy on February 21, 2010 - 6:25 pm

    I work in state regulation and I’ve been advocating for social in our department. For a time, I was running a Twitter account, but administration changes brought that to a halt.

    The biggest frustration is that I was told when interviewing that there was a strong drive to bring in a younger crowd to the insurance industry. By refusing to leverage social media, you are essentially cutting yourself off from that entire demographic.

    I think Twitter and YouTube could revolutionize the level of understanding the public has of how insurance works. What other industry sells promises to the non-sophisticated public? The lack of understanding and control that the public has over insurance is the largest source of frustration and more education can be used to remedy the situation.

    • #2 by Eddie on February 23, 2010 - 3:16 pm

      Andy, you hit on several very important points.

      First, I believe that it is extremely important for current management to understand “social” technologies because the Gen Y talent pool that will enter the workforce in the coming years will be so well-versed in social media, it will be their expected form of communication and collaboration. Top talent will become extremely frustrated with companies that resist change in this area. It will simply be unreasonable to expect top Gen Y talent to relearn the “old way” of doing things through closed, two-way communication technologies like email. Companies that resist change will 1) lose top talent to companies that do foster a more social approach to collaboration and problem-solving and 2) create one of the most pronounced workplace generation gaps seen in history. I plan to write future posts providing more information on this concept, and if there is only one idea I can drive home, it’s that “social” does not mean time-wasting despite that being the connotation with many companies.

      The other important point you make is the opportunity the insurance industry has to increase transparency. If you think about, insurance is one of THE most talked about topics of our time. It comes up in conversation among friends, family, and coworkers constantly. We live in a time when some people value their health insurance benefits over their base salary. In short, insurance is an extremely popular (or unpopular) topic that gets discussed incessantly. The national conversation is already in full force, but it would be more constructive if individuals and insurance professionals could connect more. Insurance companies should be very interested in what their customers are saying, and customers want answers. It’s a win-win situation.

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