I’m going to make a very controversial argument. Your business doesn’t need social media to survive. In fact. It’s probably better off without it. This is especially true if you are in a service based or physical products based industry.
In today’s digital world our attention is easily fragmented, which prevents us from doing the deep work we need to be focusing on in order to grow our business. Social media pulls us away from what we should be truly focusing on. This is ESPECIALLY true for small businesses owners and solopreneurs.
Bottom line is this. Social Media doesn’t have any REAL value. Let me explain.
Let the Data Guide You
Data is a powerful resource that can help you make difficult decisions in your business. Data tells a story, and should never be ignored. When it comes to social media it’s VERY important that you track the data in order to determine whether or not it’s beneficial.
This means every time you run a special promotion on Instagram or Twitter, you need to track the data. Often times this means creating a unique landing page that allows the results to be tracked. In some cases that might be opt in’s to your email, and in other cases it might be actual sales of a physical product.
In the event your promotions don’t yield the desired results, you should strongly consider pulling the plug on that particular channel.
Take my former brand Bearded Brothers energy bars as an example. I grew the audience to well over 10,000 followers. Despite the strong growth, it wasn’t translating to actual sales. The same thing occurred with by CBD brand Hemp Daddy’s Therapeutics. There was only a moderate amount of traffic coming over from the Instagram account, and virtually zero sales.
It’s my opinion that ADVERTISING on these platforms with a STRONG offer is far more valuable than relying on the effort required for organic reach. At best you are only going to reach 10% of your following. With much less effort you can likely get better results with well constructed ads that lead to a truly compelling offer.
Aside from data, there are other reasons why you should consider ditching social media…
Focus on Work That Matters
Now, that I got the data piece out of the way, let’s talk about the REAL reason why your business doesn’t need social media.
Chances are if you are a small business owner like myself, you are wearing multiple hats, which means your time is very valuable, and you can only do so much. Would you rather use your time creating work that is meaningful and impactful to your audience, or would you rather focus on posting pretty pictures, and pushing out “content” to only a small fraction of your audience.
You would be much better off focusing on creating content, writing books, making videos, etc. and then sending that out to your audience in an email, which more than likely gets much higher engagement than social media.
This is especially true when you are just starting out in business and don’t have a team. By all means, let social media be a part of your business plan, but do that AFTER you have gained a following and served people in a deep meaningful way. When you are just starting out a majority of your effort needs to be on serving your audience and helping them.
But don’t I need social media to grow an audience?
The short answer is NO. You are better off using paid traffic strategies to get people on your email list. Many of you found me through my Productivity Killer Quiz.
You might think you don’t have the budget for it, but consider this…. It can take more than six months for Google to even start picking up your content, and even longer for it so start ranking on page one, if it even does. Time is money! When it comes to ranking on Google, you are either going to pay for it with your time, or pay somebody to help you to rank.
Growing your audience significantly faster with a little bit of cash is much easier. You can even do it for free by creating what is called a self liquidating offer (SLO). An example of this would be an ebook you sell for $4.99 per download. You then use that money to pay for the ads you ran to grow your list. The point here isn’t to make money on the book, the point is to grow your email list for free.
Another thing to consider regarding spending time on social media is this. Facebook, Twitter and other platforms are constantly changing their terms of service. When I first started using social media to grow my business my posts would reach EVERYBODY that followed me. Now it might hit 1% or less. It’s a pay to play society now. So, why not put that attention into growing an email list where you can better serve and engage with your customers?
Produce the content your audience wants, NOT Google
Most blog post on the internet are written for Google, not YOU. What I mean is this. Most articles are written in a way that is tailored to Google’s algorithm. Not what the audience actually needs.
When you move your focus away from SEO, you can produce content that TRULY resonates with your audience, and you can email that content directly to them rather than HOPING they find it on Google, which allows you to engage with them in a more meaningful way.
You can even take it a step further and pay for ads on Facebook to promote the content and reach your target audience this way. Just one more strategy for reaching your audience.
You must also consider the toll social media takes on your mind
I love the John Gordon quote, “Distraction is the enemy of greatness.”
And social media is nothing more than a weapon of mass distraction. If you can learn this, you can master getting deep work done. When we allow ourselves to be constantly distracted by our devices, we condition our mind to “numb itself” anytime it’s bored. Which makes sitting down to do deep meaningful work a challenge.
Ditching social media can help train the mind to be okay with boredom, and sitting still for long periods of time in order to get meaningful work done. Simply put. Social media is keeping you from growing your business. I made this mistake myself, and spent years making a social following a top priority in my businesses…but in the end the data won out and I was able to see clearly that it actually didn’t contribute significantly to my business, but IT DID detract from it.
Focus on creating QUALITY content for your audience, not for search engines
The same is true for social media, don’t focus on likes and follows, focus on serving your target audience
Ditch social media in order to improve your focus and ability to do deep meaningful work
Grow your email list and engage with your audience in a deep and meaningful way