In an effort to help its more than 300,000 agent and broker members expand their businesses, the Alexandria, Va.-based Independent Agents & Brokers of America (Big I) has released guidelines that provide context, meaning and policy to the growing world of social media.

The Big I’s Council for Technology (ACT) released “Creating a Social Web Policy for Your Independent Agency,” a 12-page report that contains a checklist of key steps to take in developing and implementing an agency social Web policy, sample policies from some prominent companies, examples of possible provisions to include, and suggestions for a social web code of conduct for agency employees.

“Agents are understandably excited about the potential of the social Web to expand their marketing reach, shape their brand and enhance their client communications,” says Jeff Yates, ACT executive director. “But agents also want to know what their risks are in using social media, how they can make sure these tools do not detract from their employees’ productivity and how they should structure their agency’s social media policy. ACT’s new report seeks to help with each of these three issues.”

"It is good management to deploy a social Web policy that clearly lays out what is and isn’t permissible when employees are presenting themselves as representatives of your organization,” says Rick Morgan, ACT Web 2.0 Work Group chairman and principal of Rick Morgan Consulting. “Agency employees participating on the social web can contribute greatly to enhance their firm’s brand online by giving the firm a ‘personality’ and revealing the quality and expertise of its staff. This guide will be an invaluable tool for agencies, brokers and carriers as they embark on their social media journey."

Agents can also visit the ACT Web site to view actual policies that two independent agencies are using today.

To download the report and access these additional resources, click here.

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