Expert Interviews

Being a Human(a) Brand – Interview with Chuck Stephens

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to chat with Chuck Stephens (@SoChuckified), Social Media Strategist and Consultant at Humana about how Humana is successfully leveraging social.

Humana, a health insurance company, is not your typical “social” brand. Yet, the company has seen huge value in engaging on social networks. By connecting with customers and advocates on social networks, Huamana continues to increase brand recognition, shape public perception about the brand, and increase social engagement.

Be more human(a).

Social media has presented brands with a huge chance to better connect and engage with their customers – providing a channel for them to build real, long-term relationships and offering them the opportunity to develop customers into loyal brand advocates.
This medium has also allowed for brands to become more human. Being a human brand is simple, really. It’s all about being human – talking and acting like humans by listening and caring about other humans. No longer is a brand simply a “corporation”.

The issue for Humana is that people don’t generally LOVE health insurance companies. Plus – many people have preconceived notions and misconceptions regarding healthcare. Humana wants to change that. They want to tell their story.

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The answer? Social.

Social networks have given Humana a way to share their message, allowing them to share how much they care about health and wellbeing. Striving to humanize their brand, the company seeks to demonstrate that they aren’t a stodgy, insurance company and that they care about everyone’s health and wellness.

One way that the company connected with their Facebook fans was through their Humana Hope campaign. The company encouraged people to commit to a healthy lifestyle change, inspire others to do the same, and share those commitments with family and friends. The Humana Hope campaign not only demonstrated the brand’s support for their fans, but also helped the company amplify their story in social channels.


When in doubt, just ASK!

Humana is dedicated to educating everyone about health and wellness. Another way they have humanized their brand is by asking people what they are interested in learning from the brand – what health-related topics are their followers interested in learning about?

Asking people what they want. It’s a simple concept, and has proven to be valuable. This strategy helps guide the company’s content calendar – helping the company prioritize content depending on what their fans want to hear.

Plus, it gives people “a warm and fuzzy feeling that people don’t typically feel towards a healthcare company” because their voices are being heard. On social media, people want to feel like they have a voice and that their voice is being heard. And when brands listen – they increase their chances of gaining a brand advocate.

Humana has seen great success from being a human brand and interacting on social channels, which proves that social is not just for the brands that people love. There are huge opportunities for ALL brands to connect on social networks.

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