by Jessica Freeman | Featured Contributor
How many social media accounts do you have for your business? You’re most likely on Facebook, maybe on Twitter, and thinking about some others? Maybe you’re like me and have a profile on most social networks! (#addicted)
Being on social media as much as I am, I see so many questions about how to get more likes/reach, complaints about how Pinterest now has promoted pins for businesses, people questioning the point of even having fans, on and on.
I’m thankful for the access to a free Facebook page. But, I agree, I wish that all 500-some of my Facebook fans actually SAW my posts. But, this reminds me of two things:
- We’ve been using social media for FREE. The owners/creators of the various social media networks saw an opportunity for more income, so they went for it. (Much like how you went for it when you created your business!)
- I’m thankful for a website that is MINE, and an email list that is MINE. My emails don’t have to fight to be in the Facebook and Twitter feed. They land in my subscribers inbox with a click of a button. I may not have as many subscribers as I do Facebook fans, but there are more people that open my emails than those who see my posts.
Don’t get me wrong, I know there are some strategies and tactics out there for each social network that will help you get more reach, more fans, more clicks. I don’t doubt their inability to help drive traffic!
But, Facebook cannot be your website. I see a lot of new businesses just start with a Facebook page, invite all their friends and try to make a go of it. There are three problems with this scenario:
- It’s unlikely that all of your friends are your target market (unless you sell Girl Scout cookies).
- Your Facebook page does not rank very high in Google search results.
- If Facebook shuts down, you = gone.
I still put time and effort into my social media strategy, but I don’t throw a fit when only 10% of my fans see my posts. Personally, I focus on the design and content of my website and email list. These tools are an asset to my business, and to many of my clients. I can’t control (very much, unless I pay) who sees my posts. What I can TRY to influence is how long someone stays on my website, or if they open my emails.
So, what makes a good website and email?
- A clear message. You have about six seconds to convince someone to stay on your website. Is it immediately obvious what you do or sell? Do you have a clear call to action for your audience?
- Being responsive. So many people look at websites and emails on their smartphones or tablets! It’s crucial that yours is easy to read and navigate, no matter what device someone is using.
- Great design. You’re a professional, and your website needs to reflect that. Use high-quality images, easy-to-read fonts, and appropriate colors. Organize your content in a way that makes it easy to navigate.
- Easy to contact. Whether you have a contact form, or a link straight to your email – make it easy for people to contact you. Be sure your audience can also connect with you on social media!
- Keep it up-to-date. I don’t know about you, but I hate finding a good blog to follow… and then realize that they hardly ever update it. I also hate subscribing to an email list, and not hearing from them for months. Be consistent!
Most importantly, stop expecting on and relying on “the big guys” to give you completely free advertising space. Choose to pay for the Facebook ads or not, you’ll have better results when you invest in a website and email list. If you don’t have a website, get one. Whether it’s DIY or hiring someone (I recommend the latter), just get a website and make it look GOOD.
Jessica Freeman, professional graphic designer and owner of Jess Creatives, works with entrepreneurs, businesses and non-profits to create stunning graphics, websites and videos that help them stand out among competition so they can focus on doing what they do best.
After working in the corporate world for a few years and doing freelance on the side, Jess decided to take the leap to self-employment in 2014. Jess Creatives has had the privilege of working with some incredible organizations such as Georgia Tech University, Chick-fil-A Race Series, and Unique Venues.
After hours, Jess enjoys spending time with her husband, Aaron, and #FranktheChair. They currently live in Atlanta, GA, where they enjoy working out, volunteering, and working on side projects for Jess Creatives.