In our last post, we casually mentioned that if you’re relying solely on social media marketing, we really need to talk! It was meant as a joke (sort of…), but it seemed to tweak questions. First, we’ll start by saying that it’s absolutely true – relying solely on social media marketing can be a huge mistake for small businesses.

Are we saying that social media marketing is dead? Do we have something against Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter? Absolutely not. We are not advocating that you get rid of social media marketing entirely. But there are at least 4 reasons why relying solely on social media marketing can be a huge mistake:

  1. Not all your customers are on Facebook
  2. Social media is becoming a more crowded space
  3. Some brands find it hard to “stand out among the noise”
  4. There may be more cost-effective ways to reach your target audience

Plus, we’ll dive into some other marketing ideas that will help you reach wider audiences.

1. Not all your customers are on Facebook

Woman, 35, enjoying Facebook.

This is pretty self-explanatory, but let’s dive into the details. According to stats from March 2022, there are 1.93 billion daily active Facebook users in the world. That sounds like a lot – and it is – but that also means that three-quarters of the world isn’t on Facebook. Now, we can hear you saying, “Just because there are people in the middle of the desert not on Facebook, does that mean my customers aren’t?” And that’s kind of our point. How do you know that your customers are on Facebook? You might be surprised to hear that Facebook is the most popular social media platform for people aged 35-44, but only 7.3% of women 16-24 list Facebook as their favorite. So, depending on who your market is, this stat is either a good thing or a bad thing.

On the flip side, if you say, “Yes, I know that they are all on Facebook because that’s where all my customers come from,” that might be a self-fulfilling prophesy. If all you do is market on Facebook, then of course most or all of your customers will come from there. By casting a wider marketing net, you might find customers you wouldn’t have otherwise. In other words, if you’re relying solely on social media marketing, you could be missing a huge chunk of your potential customers.

The key to any marketing campaign is to talk to your target audience where they are. So work from the outside in. Decide who your typical customer is, and find out where they are. That’s not always going to be on social media.

2. Social media is becoming a more crowded space, leading to burnout

To paraphrase a famous Yogi Berra saying, social media is becoming so crowded that nobody goes there anymore. This may somewhat contradict the first point until you look a little closer. Most people at one point or another feel overwhelmed with the whole social media experience. Some take “social media breaks” for a short or a long amount of time. But there is a step before that where you mindlessly scroll through your feeds (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, whatever) and only stop at certain names – usually closer friends. Consider your own social media habits – have you done this yourself?

Social media burnout is real and common. Further, this burnout can actually affect how other people use social media. If you’re friends don’t see you around as much, then Facebook becomes less meaningful to them, too.

The more overwhelming social media is for any particular person, the less likely it is you’ll be able to connect with them.

3. Some brands find it hard to “stand out among the noise”

Zebra-striped elephant stands out from the crowd.

This is interesting. Not only do brands have to fight against burnout, they have to compete against a growing number of Facebook advertisers, too. According to Facebook, there are 160 million businesses using their “apps” (which may imply Instagram, Facebook, and Messenger) every month – something they proudly tout as 1 in 55 people in the world. Great for them, but maybe not so great for you. That means it’s getting harder and harder to “stand out among the noise” as one social media marketer puts it.

If you have found a way to stand out from the crowd every single time, then great – you’re golden! But that’s not realistic. The reality is that, on average, the more advertisers there are out there on Facebook, the fewer clicks will be coming your way. Some people have become “ad blind” altogether because of the sheer number of ads. Relying solely on social media marketing then means there’s a good chance you’ll have diminishing returns. It might be a better strategy to go where the other advertisers aren’t so you shine brighter.

4. There may be more cost-effective ways to reach your target audience

Woman on bike stopping in front of a wall mural advertising a coffee shop.

The more advertisers there are, likely the more it’s going to cost you to get your ads seen above the others. It’s simple supply and demand. Going to where the other advertisers aren’t as mentioned above will tend to be more cost effective.

Take email marketing, for example. Contacting your customers directly (a) gives you an entirely captive audience – no fighting for attention, and (b) it can cost very little to run an email campaign including a newsletter or similar strategy. According to Forbes (and others), email marketing has the highest return on investment (ROI) of all marketing channels.

If you have a retail space or any space where you interact with customers and clients, you once again have a captive audience. Getting the word out about your next promotion through a poster, handout, or digital display also gives you a captive audience – an audience of people who are already customers.

These are just a few ideas. But how do you know which ideas will work for you? We’re glad you asked…

What (or Whom) to Rely on if Relying on Social Media Marketing is a Huge Mistake…

Woman and marketing professional opening a basket of ideas.

There are many marketing strategies out there including social media marketing strategies. The ones that work best are the ones that are tailored to your small business. Sounds easy enough, but it’s deceptively complex. Not only do you need to know some marketing basics, you also have to have a good understanding of who your customers are and why they buy from you, and then find a way to connect with them. Getting it wrong can be costly and lead to disaster.

You can rely on Elite Marketing + Promotions to get it right. We have the marketing knowledge and skills to help your small business expand your customer base, increase sales, and even move into new markets. And, we’ll help you avoid costly mistakes – including relying solely upon social media marketing.

Contact Elite Marketing + Promotions today to find out how we can provide you with the marketing knowledge and expertise to find and reach your customers.