Things seem to have changed a lot in the past three years. I’m curious as to what people feel are the essential ingredients of a comprehensive Web presence for a marketing company, especially insurance, given the state of the Web today?

IMO, the presence need to accomplish the following critically important functions. (I got these from Bill Tyson who I think got them from Groundswell.) Btw, if anyone can recommend any reading material or “Understanding Web 2.0″ sites, I’m all eyes…

  • Listening – gathering feedback and customer insights for research purposes.
  • Talking – spread messages about your company and their products and services.
  • Energizing - find your most enthusiastic customers and use the power of word of mouth.
  • Supporting – deploy tools to help your customers engage with each other.
  • Embracing – Integrate your customers into the way your business works, including using their help to design new products or improve services. (Most challenging)

So what are the tools to do all this? Corporate site with content management? Individual blogs? Corporate blogs? Portals for distributors, agents, vendors, etc.? Corporate MySpace page? Nimble and well-designed quoting and enrollment site? Asking for referrals every where? Employee portal?

Interested in comments.

Next week: PIMA Summer Conference in Newport, RI. – but first a little R&R. Check smugmug for the pictures along the way…

Meantime, I had some international soccer coaches staying at my house last week – Reginaldo from Brazil and James from England. We introduced them to corn hole, smores, and fireworks. Got a tri-pod and tried my hand at shooting fireworks. Interesting learnings if anyone is interested… See more – click here.