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Tweeters Take On Insurance Company

In the ugly battle of Web users vs. insurance companies, a lot of blood was spilled this week.

We’ve known for a while that hell hath no fury like an Internet user scorned. But at the intersection of social media, consumer frustration, anxious lawyers and heavy-handed regulations you’ll find a particularly tricky corner of the Web. Insurance firms, which have always been a magnet for complaints anyway, lie at precisely this crossroads.

Increased competition has led insurers to employ high-profile marketing gimmicks, like geckos or touchdown dances, in an effort to become household names with friendly reputations. That means it’s become necessary for them to establish a social media presence. Progressive’s “Flo” character, for instance, has her own Facebook page, with hundreds of thousands of fans. But inviting social dialogue sometimes means inviting trouble, as Flo and her handlers found out the hard way this week.

Progressive encountered a twitter revolt after the family of a woman killed in a car crash wrote a blog post criticizing the way the firm fought to avoid paying a claim. The post went viral, and the insurance giant then compounded its problems by spitting out automated tweets in response.

Experts who talked about the incident this week said Progressive fell into a trap that often catches large companies as they stumble around the social media world.

The Heat Reporter
The Heat Reporterhttp://theheatmag.com
Known in entertainment circles as "LA Dre", the Editor of The Heat Magazine works tirelessly to bring you the latest & greatest in entertainment news. He spent years in the industry & now brings some of that insider knowledge to his readers.
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