Businesses often say that there is no value in social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook and Youtube etc, that it doesn’t bring them any benefit or income and it’s just a waste of time.
I disagree and I will show why with a real life example.
I was looking for travel insurance. It’s somewhat tricky for me as I have a pre-existing medical condition. I’ve had a lung transplant and you can, if you like, read more about that on my More About Clare Lauwerys page.
Each year, despite the fact that I am in good health and have never made a claim, the quotes for travel insurance have gone up from around £150 for a world wide annual policy a few years back to over £700 for a single trip. Insurance firms that used to cover people with transplants no longer do and even those that say they specialise in covering people with pre-existing conditions want to charge the large sum (or even larger sums) I just mentioned.
So what did I do? Well I used to work for a global insurer and I’m no stranger to phoning around to get quotes. In fact I’ve done it so many times I know exactly what questions and in which order I’ll be asked. But this wasn’t being fruitful.
So I went to Twitter.
I tweeted my local BBC radio station to see if they would be interested in covering it as a story. And that’s how I ended on their morning show telling my story. It touched a cord and the phones were buzzing with other people telling their story. But that wasn’t going to get me insurance.
I also tweeted this “I hate sorting out travel insurance”
I got two messages from that tweet. One was useless (wouldn’t cover me) but the other one….well let me continue
I tweeted back asking about transplants. They said they would check and get back to me. They did check and they said it could be possible. I went to their website, did a quote with online medical screening and almost fell off my chair at how good the quote was. Concerned that something was wrong I phoned them and got very confused when after re-quoting they couldn’t cover me!
So I went back to twitter and tweeted to them and they arranged for someone to call me. She, who is now my angel, tripled check everything, discovered where the error had been made and so I now I am very happy as I have travel insurance.
And the company is very happy as they have a new client who will tell other people in the same situation to give them a call.
And that’s why social media can work is good for business. And for individuals too!
PS – And of course @Shush1979