Have you ever wondered whether it's possible to run your business without being on social media 24/7 - or at all?
In this episode I'm taking a look into whether this is an impossible dream or more realistic than you think - and whether it's something you SHOULD consider for your business.
Download my FREE guide on How to Manage Your Social Media Without The Stress here!
This is Leonie Dawson's fab course as mentioned in today's episode Marketing Without Social Media*
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One thing which really comes up time and time again for me is social media. I have such a love/hate relationship with it, and I know that for many many business owners it’s this Catch 22 situation.
You feel like you have to constantly be on there to build your business but you find it exhausting coming up with regular content, it takes up huge amounts of time and you get sucked in to constantly checking your notifications - which of course feeds that emotional rollercoaster of feeling great when you’re seeing lots of likes and feeling like crap when there’s nothing!
If I had a pound for every time someone’s said to me ‘I wish I didn’t have to be on here’ I would be SO rich by now.
So can you - and SHOULD you run your business without social media?
Well, those are two very different questions.
The answer to the first one is yes, it’s absolutely possible to run a business without it, and there are plenty of businesses that do.
I recently did a course by the amazing Leonie Dawson on Marketing Without Social Media* - I’m not going to go into great detail about how to do it today but feel free to click on the link in the shownotes and sign up for Leonie’s fab course if that’s something you do want to learn more about.
Personally I did Leonie’s course because I wanted to be fully informed for myself and my clients and I wanted to just remind myself that there are other possibilities out there - you know, we all get sucked into this herd mentality of doing what everyone else is doing without questioning it and I think it’s really good to stop and make ourselves reflect on the possibilities sometimes.
And Leonie has built an $11million business so I think she knows what she’s talking about when it comes to marketing and strategy!
And yes, if I’m honest I would LOVE to reduce social media use in my business, so that’s exactly what I’m planning to do. But I’m not getting rid of it entirely - although who knows, in future, I might just do that!
The truth is that right now it’s still a really valuable part of the picture for me and I think I would be foolish to give it up completely.
The thing is, when we’re feeling exhausted by something and disillusioned with it, it’s very easy to be 2-dimensional in our thinking. It’s either/or, it’s black or white - we don’t see the shades of grey.
We convince ourselves we can’t possibly cut down what we’re doing and exhaust ourselves with it more and more until finally we can’t take any more and we burn out. We just stop posting, we feel completely overwhelmed and sabotage everything we’ve worked so hard for.
One of the key things about marketing is consistency - we have to be showing up regularly to get noticed. But our mind takes that to the extreme and we find ourselves barely disconnecting from our phones at all, we feel like we’ve got to be superglued to them.
And that’s the real problem.
It’s not that social media is bad, per se, it’s that it’s addictive and we allow the way we use it to be unhealthy. It becomes all-consuming.
And we end up spending FAR much more time on there than we need to, far much more than is healthy - and far much more than is actually needed for our business. Download my FREE guide on How to Manage Your Social Media Without The Stress
Just taking some of Leonie’s stats, she looked at traffic to her website and realised that only 20% of her overall traffic was coming from social media. Yet she was spending 80% of her time and energy on there to generate that little bit of traffic.
Now early on in your business, you might feel like you’ll do anything to get ANY visitors to your website and any sales! But Leonie’s spent years and years blogging and building a really solid, loyal audience. She’s got a great foundation outside of social media and she’s been able to make that call that the 20% return she’s getting just isn’t worth it.
And I think there’s a real lesson in there about how to really build solid foundations for your business.
If you’re putting ALL your efforts into social media marketing and doing nothing else, you’re always going to HAVE to rely on social media - it’s so short-term that you’ve got to keep feeding the machine. Putting some of your effort elsewhere is not only going to bring traffic into your business by other means, it’s going to give you flexibility and security so should anything happen to those social media accounts, you’ve still got leads and clients. And it can happen - I’ve seen people lose their accounts and all their followers overnight.
So what you have to do is weigh up for your business, how important it is, how much you enjoy it, and what other strategies you might want to consider to build stronger foundations for the future.
The other thing to think about is that social media is a fantastic source of connection - not just for marketing purposes, but for support. I’ve made so many wonderful friends just through interacting online and that’s been amazing for me through having kids and surviving covid, but also even when you’re not selling your stuff, just building those relationships can help you find new opportunities for your business and can lead to some fantastic things.
So if you are in that place where you’re just sick and tired of it and you’re wishing there were a way out, maybe spend a moment listing all the pros and cons to help you work out whether it makes sense for your business to opt out entirely. Look at your stats, look at what else you could potentially do - and remember it is ALWAYS possible to do things differently, if you really want to.
Having done this for myself, I’ve realised that right now isn’t the time for me to quit, but I do really want to cut down my reliance on it. So it’s about working smarter and using my time more effectively.
I’m concentrating on building my audience and in particular my email list, through this podcast and the associated blogs (so please do share if you’re enjoying what you’re hearing, that would be amazing!). And I’m using mindset and practical strategies to help me make the most productive use of my time on there rather than being constantly attached to my phone for very little gain.
I took the Facebook app off my phone when I went on holiday at the beginning of August and I haven’t reinstalled it yet, and do you know it’s been wonderful! I’m getting so much more done in my personal life, relaxing so much more and really feeling present. I’m just checking in to my groups and the memberships I’m in intentionally when I need to and it’s working well.
I’m on LinkedIn as well as Facebook and I’m actually really enjoying the community and interaction on there at the moment, so that one’s staying too!
So I know it can be hard to break free of that compulsion to keep checking and that I think is the biggest struggle for most people.
I’m actually thinking of producing a mini-course to teach you the mindset and practical things you need to consider, to allow you to use social media effectively for your business without it taking over your life.
If you would like to hear more about that when it launches then you can get on my email list by downloading my free guide Manage Your Social Media Without The Stress and I’ll keep you posted!
And if you’d like to check it out, here’s Leonie’s course Marketing Without Social Media*. (P.S. Links with an * are affiliate links, for which I will receive a small commission. Just so you know!).