On March 13th of 2019, Facebook pretty much went down. This issue affected WhatsApp, a widely popular messaging platform, and Instagram, one of the most impactful social media for marketing your business.
As a result, many businesses who rely on Facebook’s family of apps to communicate with prospects found themselves hindered and at the mercy of Facebook’s team of engineers.
This system-wide failure is bad enough, but imagine what it’s like when massive companies like Facebook and Twitter censor your content because they disagree with it – which happens more and more each year.
So what is the answer?
Escaping Social Media
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn are fantastic tools for SEO and marketing efforts, but when the infrastructure is swept from beneath your business what do you have left?
- Email marketing
- Phone contact lists
Ultimately, if your business relies heavily on social media to gain new business then there is a chance you are leaving opportunities on the table to build a more secure marketing platform.
One of the oldest digital marketing methods, email marketing is still running strong. Email lists are easy to start building – all you have to do is set up an account at MailChimp or any other email marketing service and start adding your existing customers to a list.
Now you have a foundation for your email campaigns where you can send out news and promotions to the people who are already looking to hear from you, and when you embed a sign-up form on your website or link to the form in your social media platforms, you can develop an entirely unique experience for your customers which will survive a Facebook outage or censorship.
Phone Contact Lists
Using the phone is still one of the most effective ways to communicate quickly with prospects, rendering it one of your most powerful sales tools. When developing your email marketing list, you can usually include a field for visitors to enter their phone numbers as part of the opt-in form.
Alternatively, you may choose to build forms on your website that bypass email entirely and go straight to gathering phone numbers.
Last on this list, but by far not least, is your website.
Your website is the best representation of your brand on the Web. You don’t have to compete with the aesthetics and rules of social media platforms when translating your brand design, and you have the ability to completely control the content and site functions. With good hosting, and assuming you’re not trying to reach China, your website is pretty much available 24/7 to bring new global prospects into your brand.
All of this is not to say that social media is a good or bad thing for your business. Social media has a place as a ‘top of funnel’ source for website traffic. Social media also allows you to broadcast your content directly into your prospects’ lives at a price that no other medium can compete with.
If your marketing strategy relies solely on social media, however, then you had better hope and pray that the internet deities of Facebook, Twitter, and Google continue to smile upon your enterprise…
For when they don’t, your marketing strategies will die.