There’s a lot going on in the social media space these days. From people’s content being restricted for using words like “blind” to flat out censorship. It's safe to say that the online space is changing and if you have your business completely on social media then it may be time for you to start protecting your assets and consider owning a website and building an email list.
In this article, I'm going to be covering some of the downsides of only having your business on social media and why you should be pushing to move your audience to something you own like a website and an email list in 2021.
Now most people reading this are probably going to blow this off. I mean a website!? An email list!? Why do all that when social media is free and all the traffic is there right?
Well, both of those things are true but here's the thing…. You get what you pay for and that traffic, that audience you have on those social media platforms…...it ain’t yours. Let me explain.
The allure of social media is the fact that you don’t have to build anything. You sign up, create a profile and you're pretty much good to go.
That social media platform already has a user base you can engage with and build up a following and pretty much grow your brand.
I mean don't get me wrong social media is a great way to build and brand and grow a business and I encourage it but something you absolutely have to keep in the back of your head is that these platforms are privately owned and they can change the rules at any time.
Many people think they have control and to some extent own the engagement and the followers they have on social media but this is not the case. The truth is you don’t actually own the relationships you build over social media. It belongs to that respective platform owner. They're the ones documenting the engagements, they’re the ones collecting the data and they're the ones doing the R&D and building out all the features for that platform.
But guess what? these platforms are using that data to best suit their needs and their agenda. Sure they add a few requested features here and there but that's to make sure those who are investing in the platform monetarily speaking stay invested in the platform.
The main point here I'm trying to get at is that they have complete control over how many people you can engage with and how you actually engage with them. They know most of you who are running your business through social media are at some point going to drive their users off the platform.
Do you think they’re going to give you full access to all of your followers if you’re just going to send them off-site? better believe they're going to penalize you and throttle your content and if you want access to more eyes on your content…. then you’re going to have to pay to play.
This may sound ridiculous but it's true. Remember that terms of service page you agreed to but didn't read? Go take a few minutes and read through the TOS and see just how many of your freedoms you’re giving up to use their “Free” platform. I hate to break it to you but free isn't always “free”. Just because you're not paying cash doesn’t mean you won’t be paying by some other means.
So why a website and why have an email list when all of these social media platforms already have the user base and the infrastructure in place already.
Well for starters both the website and the email lists are yours. You control the content, you control the engagement, and you can take these two things with you where you go on the internet.
Don’t like the hosting? Back up the website and your email list and when you find a new hosting platform, transfer or upload everything over to the new host, and have everything up and running like you never even left.
Sure you have to pay money to have these things but it's well worth it seeing as how you’ll have full control over what happens on your platform.
Facebook and Instagram are known for going down due to technical issues, youtube is known for suppressing content, and Twitter….. let’s not talk about Twitter right now.
Having a website and an email list is just another way for your followers and subscribers to get in contact with you should anything go wrong (and trust me when it comes to social media something will go wrong).
I believe one of the biggest deterrents from having a website is the complication of actually having to build one. That fear can be put to rest. There are plenty of hosting platforms out there that make the process of creating your website a breeze and it takes literal minutes to get done.
There are installable website themes out there to fit every business model and some hosting platforms out there have app stores that allow you to quickly and easily add functionality to your website just like if you installed an app to your smartphone.
You also have the ability to create membership sites or forums for your followers so they can converse and share content as if they were on social media with the big difference being that you actually own that website.
To take it a step further there are some platforms like the one I'm currently using that implements AI technology that literally does all the heavy lifting for you.
If you’re promoting a local business online or an online freelancing business or maybe something like affiliate marketing then check out my review for the all-in-one marketing platform nowsite. The platform provides you with a website, email marketing, social media marketing, SMS marketing, as well as ai software that will recommend the best content related to your business to help get you traffic from your social media accounts back to your website.
As I mentioned earlier it's ok if you're just starting out to run your business from social media especially if you're low on funds. But at some point but if you have the funds then I recommend investing in creating a website. It doesn't have to be anything complicated a simple one page will do. It's just another way that people can get in touch with you should anything go wrong on social media.