Remember when Facebook Marketing was the small business owners dream? We all loved it.
The Facebook Marketing Problem
Millions and millions of people use Facebook and as a small business owner it was fantastic. Small business could reach out to their audience and get free and easy access to new perspective customers. It was great! Social Media Developers like Smack Smog would just tell people to make a fan page on Facebook and we’d watch the numbers to roll in. Facebook Marketing was easy! Everyone suddenly became a Facebook Guru. Everyone was happy. Life was easy. Life on Facebook was good.
Fast forward some time and Facebook goes public and suddenly it has to explain to shareholders how profits are going to increase. So what happens? Facebook Marketing gets tough.
Now if you are a small business you need to pay to promote yourself on Facebook. In fact if you don’t pay Facebook your fans rarely see your posts and messages. In fact many report to SmackSmog that Facebook is getting boring and that we don’t see our friends in our Facebook Timeline like we used to. Some speculate that their friends are dropping out of Facebook because the “shiny newness” has worn off. A common complaint that I hear about Facebook is that suddenly all Advertisements and pictures of peoples grandchildren. Suddenly Facebook isn’t as attractive as it use to be.
Social Media Diversity
Much like life, everyone is looking for the next big thing in Social Media. There are many outlets for Social Media. Here are a few of many.
All of these are incredible Social Media Outlets and I definitely encourage you to explore each of them. They each have a culture of their own and they each can reward you or curse you. Be sure to proceed with caution. Learn the culture of each of these sites and be respectful. Find a way to have your presence add value to your community. My advice is to find a Social Media Developer with a deep sense of Content Marketing to help you guide through the channels. (Disclosure: this is what we do at Smack Smog, but if you cannot hire me I’d suggest finding an outfit with these qualities).
What is Small Business Owner To Do?
No one at Smack Smog is sure what the next thing is going to be, we are all pretty sure that Facebook is in the decline. We are very intrigued by Google+ for a number of reasons but it’s impossible to say what the next big thing will be. The thing to remember is that before Facebook was MySpace, then before MySpace was Friendster and before Friendster was… Six Degrees and before that? Who knows. The point is that Social Media is fluid. It’s changing. It’s great because it attracts different people for different reasons. For this reason one size doesn’t fit all. It’s important to find the Social Media outlet that fits you and your needs.
Tailor Made Social Media
As social media developers our advice to our clients always begins the same. It goes like this…
Get your own site, with your own domain and make your site the hub of all things. Yes you probably need to be on Facebook for now. maybe Twitter, perhaps Pinterest but at the core of all your social media marketing should be your own site with your own content. The content should be a reflection of your social media strategy and echoed through all the other outlets. Your own website is what you will always have the most control over and will reflect who you are, and what you do. Your other social media endeavors should all point back to your website and your blog. You control the message, you control the medium.
This way when Facebook fades away (and I believe that it will) you will still remain. If you proceed correctly, your fans will as well.