Congratulations to our 2024 Hearsay Award winners!

Congratulations to our 2024 Hearsay Award winners!

Our 2024 Hearsay Awards celebrate clients who leveraged Hearsay to build sophisticated (and effective!) Hearsay Sites, Relate, and Social programs. This year’s award recipients shared some of their winning strategies at our recent Summit’s award winner panel. Read on for some highlights!

Exceptional Engagement

Edie DePhillips, the SVP of Sales Operations Excellence at Wells Fargo, accepted the Exceptional Engagement award—which recognizes outstanding Social engagement across workspaces—on behalf of her team.

When asked what the ‘secret’ of Wells Fargo’s social program growth is, Edie immediately recognized program leader Carla Hawkins’ leadership. She said, “Carla manages the program on a day-to-day basis and is very invested in making sure the field is successful.” Edie also credits the comprehensive training, which is catered to each user’s skill and comfort level, as a key success driver. Additionally, she says, “Social media is just one piece of your greater marketing strategy. We incorporate it into a scorecard, which is a monthly marketing plan that sales producers can follow.” And when asked about the typical profile of a top social seller, Edie said, “Our top producers are not necessarily top engagers—but what they are is consistent.”

Exceptional Engagement

Dan Hart, the Head of Social Media Compliance at National Life, was also recognized for Exceptional Engagement. Dan and his team built a social program that far supercedes typical engagement—averaging five likes or comments per published post. How did they do it?

It’s unusual to see social media and compliance in the same title, but that alignment is largely what’s made Dan’s team so successful. Because of their strong compliance relationships, his team is empowered to publish authentic, original content. In fact, 41% of all posts his team published last year were original. He said, “People are often threatened by compliance, but once you break down the barrier and see we’re just here to help, you can build a really effective program together.”

To secure buy-in from the field, National Life’s training program handholds individuals as they learn the platform while also sharing performance data. He explains, “We’ll show them how marketing-generated content got one or two likes, then compare it to an original post about volunteering at a food bank, which got thirty-five.” This smart ‘show, don’t tell’ approach is really paying off!

Fast Fingers

John Heidrich, the Senior Marketing Manager at Allstate, accepted the Fast Fingers award on behalf of his team. This award was issued to the firm with the fastest Relate response times. 

By combining Hearsay Relate and Hearsay Actions, Allstate’s field set up a fool-proof speed-to-lead program that helps them convert business at a higher rate. John explains, “Actions was a game changer for us in getting our agencies engaged with texting. They always said that they wanted to text their clients, but we started with a lot of service texting. We implemented Actions to help sales, and that’s when response times shot up.”

Allstate also has a strong training program called Navigator. Part of the curriculum includes highlighting individuals who are doing an incredible job with compliant texting. John says, “Having agencies hear from peers has proven to be an amazingly effective training decision. These spotlights help inspire better engagement and adoption.”

Beyond training, John is focused on assessing his team’s comfort level and skill set to help each individual grow. John says, “Hearsay is helping us build a User Maturity Model (UMM) for Relate. UMM gives us a benchmark we can use to measure individual effort and success and segment folks into key training groups. We’ve already used it for Social, and it’s immensely helpful. Now, we’re using it to inspire our lesser engaged agencies to get more involved with texting so we can continue to evolve and improve our program.”

Networking Ninja

Michele Weisman, VP of Social Media at JPMorgan Chase Asset Management, accepted the Networking Ninja award on her team’s behalf. This award recognizes outstanding growth in network connections.

When asked how she’s helped architect a successful social program, Michele said, “Keep your partners close. We rely on LinkedIn and Hearsay to provide us with expertise and guidance on what’s next in the industry and what’s changed on various social networks. Those platforms love to change things all the time, and it’s up to you to make sure that your social content and strategy are aligned with those changes.” Like many of the others on stage, she also mentioned the importance of having a strong training program.

So, what about content strategy? Michele says, “Social media is like a cocktail party. You don’t always want to promote your business, and you don’t always want to promote yourself. You have to do a combination of both and be natural and authentic.” She explains that being strategic with content makes it possible to generate more connections. 

Sites Superstar

Mike Bruno, the AVP of Digital at Co-operators, accepted the Sites Superstar award on his team’s behalf. This award was issued in recognition of Mike’s team leveraging Sites to build a powerful lead generation engine.

By consistently driving traffic to advisor pages that include a conversion-optimized lead form, his team has been able to generate more than 120,000 leads using websites that were converting at 40%. Mike says, “In 2023, we decided to roll out a very simple, straightforward contact lead form…[that form] generated over 12,000 requests from clients all across Canada—averaging roughly 40 a day in some periods during the investment season.” What’s most impressive is that the vast majority of individuals filling out the form were not current customers; they were prospects looking for insurance and investment information. 

Mike said, “The biggest surprise was that we had so many users on our website who wanted an advisor to reach out to them. All we had to do was add a simple form, and we were able to capture all of that intent.” Mike added that advisors have been coming to his team, looking for more insight on how to better leverage their marketing tools to generate new business. “It was a big shift from what we were seeing a year or two ago, and we’re really happy with our progress.”

Huge congratulations to all of our winners! We appreciate your partnership, and we can’t wait to see how these programs evolve in the coming years.

Jessica Cates
Jessica is a content creator and strategist dedicated to publishing engaging content across Hearsay's corporate channels. The Gilbert, Arizona-based mom of two loves to tackle a blinking cursor on a blank page – and as a former Nebraskan, is totally down with the southwest's interpretation of winter.

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