Small business owners must not rely solely on social media platforms to get more clients.
Were you one of the thousands of people affected by Facebook’s outage on October 4th? Was your business impacted? (In case you missed it, there was an outage across all Facebook platforms including both Facebook and Instagram, that lasted for a good six hours.)
Many of us were affected by not being able to log into Facebook or Instagram throughout most of the day. We missed out on scrolling through the feed of posts from our followers and friends … but did we miss anything? Or was it a relief to have that break from the pull to social media? I know for me, personally, it was.
And yet, I know there are many businesses that use Facebook and Instagram to market to their ideal client. Social media platforms are a great way to reach out to potential clients.
Even so, this most recent Facebook outage teaches us one very valuable lesson when it comes to marketing our small businesses:
“Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.”
This old proverb, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket,” can be applied to many aspects of life and business—including marketing your small business.
Social media platforms, such as Facebook and Instagram, can come and go without any control from us as business owners. Whether through social trends of the most popular platforms or from technical outages, we have no control over the accessibility of our social media profiles.
If there is an outage, or a platform disappears, guess what? We have lost ALL of our followers! We have lost ALL CONNECTION with those who we were engaging with through posts and direct messages. All that hard work of cultivating followers and potential leads is gone.
So, is it worth investing in social media platforms?
Yes, I believe it is important to be present on the social media platforms where your ideal client is spending their time. However, as the old proverb teaches us, it is so important for our businesses that we don’t put all of our marketing efforts into social media platforms.
Social media platforms are a great tool for attracting potential leads to your business, for engaging with your followers and showcasing your expertise through tips, testimonials, and other posts. It is a great way, especially in today’s world that has gone so viral, to let people get to know, like, and trust YOU – the person behind your business.
The key lesson for us to learn from Facebook’s recent outage is that we have to encourage our followers to engage with us outside of these social media platforms.
How do we engage with followers outside of social media?
With your email list! Yep, within your marketing plan, you should be encouraging those followers on all your social media platforms to subscribe to your email list.
You can encourage your social media followers to get on your email list by sharing your free offers on a regular basis. If these followers are your ideal client they will want to get that free offer! And when they request a copy of that awesome checklist, guide, or template, they are added onto your email list.
The number 1 reason to encourage people to subscribe to your email list is because you own your list!
You have full control of the names and email addresses on that list. That list is yours! It does not belong to another business or company that controls the social media platforms you are active on. You are not going to lose those contact details if an outage on another social media platform happens tomorrow.
Now, you may be asking, “But, what about the email marketing platform I use? What happens if that platform stops working?”
This is a valid question. And yes, we don’t have any more control over the access to our chosen email marketing platform as we do to the social media platforms we use. Therefore, I recommend setting a weekly or monthly task to back up your list. Just like you back up your computer, set a recurring task to export your current subscribers and save that file. Now you have a fail-safe should something happen to the email marketing platform you use.
Check out this article if you are curious about learning 6 other marketing benefits that an email list can provide you with: 7 Benefits of Email in your Online Marketing Plan.
Your action step for today is to review your marketing efforts and work on creating an engaged email list that you consistently and regularly communicate with.