Which social media platforms do you currently use to market your business?
If I guessed Facebook, the odds are pretty good I’d be right. It’s the site most widely used by most social media marketers I know these days.
Of course, you do have other options. Google +, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, to name a few. Many online marketers have had great success with some of these options.
But focusing for the moment solely on Facebook, are you sure it’s the best option for your business? Or are you just using it because everyone else is?
While social media, and specifically Facebook, has opened vast opportunities for marketing that didn’t exist all that long ago, it’s also presented brand new challenges.
I know. I’ve struggled with all of them.
After months, even years, fighting with Facebook marketing, with frustrating results, I’ve recently turned my attention to a different site that seems a more appropriate place to do business.
At least for me.
What About LinkedIn?
Have you spent much time on LinkedIn lately? It might be time to take a closer look. There’ve been lots of changes, and in my opinion, most of them for the better.
Like many marketers, Facebook has been my primary online marketing focus for my fitness coaching business.
Recently, though, my fitness business has taken a back seat to my recently launched freelance writing business, and Facebook just doesn’t seem like such a good business fit anymore.
If it ever was.
Keeping up with the ever-changing Facebook rules, formats, and various opinions about what works and what doesn’t is a big reason.
Additionally, Facebook now seems more like a playground to me, rather than a serious business space, which is another factor fueling my decision to switch my efforts to LinkedIn.
Sure, you probably have a presence on Facebook. After all, who doesn’t, these days?
In fact, Facebook, once considered predominantly teen and young adult-oriented, now has users of all ages.
Demographic studies show that while the largest age group using Facebook remains between 18 and 34, the number of older adults, including baby boomers, using Facebook continues to grow.
And as the most popular social media site, it’s easy to see why businesses put so much marketing energy into Facebook.
But there’s no denying it can be an exceedingly frustrating experience.
Facebook For Fun, Yes. Business? Maybe Not So Much
What’s great about Facebook is it makes it so easy to connect with family and friends. Planning parties and sharing events on Facebook is a breeze.
I love that I can keep up with what’s going on with my family and friends, see their pictures, read their updates, with such ease, via Facebook.
Sure, I can do without some of the dirty laundry and angry rants I see every day on Facebook, but that’s a story for another day.
But when it comes to Facebook marketing, even with the use of business pages and ads, I’m no longer so sure it’s the best business marketing platform.
At least not for me.
And with so many new online businesses using Facebook for marketing, and doing it badly, it’s only getting worse.
Too many network marketers, for example, simply don’t know how to market professionally on Facebook. Not that it stops them from trying.
They spam people, often unintentionally. They flood the newsfeed with calls to buy their stuff.
But for me, the biggest problem with Facebook is it’s casual, non-professional atmosphere.
For some business models, that’s a negative.
My Decision to Move To LinkedIn
When I first opened my Facebook account, it was strictly for fun.
When I started a fitness coaching business, it just made sense to use Facebook as a way to get the word out.
And yes, I did it badly. I admit it.
My apologies to all those repeatedly slammed with what I thought were interesting posts on health and fitness, but, in fact, were often thinly veiled attempts to reach people for my business.
Over time, I grew up a bit and learned how better to market on Facebook. It was very much a learning, and humbling, experience.
Eventually, I moved my business to a Facebook fitness page and began to post fitness- and health-related topics to that page.
I still have my fitness page, but these days, it sits a bit dormant. That’s only partly because of my change in business focus.
Another reason it sits dormant is that it just plain became a pain the rear end.
It’s true I’ve also opened a page for my freelance writing business, but alas, it too sits mostly quiet.
I’ve just gradually been reaching the decision that I don’t want to do business on Facebook. And here’s why:
- I have zero desire always to have to be on, to be cute and smart, on Facebook, no matter what, which seems to be a necessity.
- I resent feeling like I have to post something every few hours, to stay continuously in front of people.
- I don’t like being tied to social media, and highly doubt it’s necessary to run a successful business despite being repeatedly told that it is.
People Are Not Meant To Be Tethered
I once heard a social media marketing expert say, on more than one occasion, that you should never take a vacation or put yourself in a situation where you’re unable to connect to the internet.
I remember thinking how stupid that sounded. But who was I to doubt the validity of that statement?
This person was the supposed expert. Maybe that is what today’s market requires.
Now I’m back to thinking it’s stupid. And unnecessary.
If being chained to technology and social media is a business success necessity, then give me the life of a beach bum any day of the week.
It just flies in the face of human nature.
It’s, well, stupid.
LinkedIn Vs. Facebook
With all this in mind, LinkedIn now seems like a better business fit for me.
LinkedIn is where business people go to do business, to be serious, to connect with others on a much more professional level.
I can join professional groups, network with like-minded professionals. Build relationships with people who might be interested in my services.
I can learn new skills and gain knowledge through the shared experiences of others.
And most importantly, I don’t feel the need to be there 24/7, being cute and clever and in your face, like I felt on Facebook.
How to Choose The Right Social Media Site For Your Business
So how do you know where best to market your online business?
Well, the short answer is, experiment. Try out different platforms. See which ones seem to fit well and work best for your business.
Which sites do you enjoy using?
If you don’t like a platform, or find it cumbersome and clumsy to use, you probably won’t do as well there as you might on a different site.
Give it time, to be sure you’ve tested it thoroughly. Try different approaches and angles.
Read up on how best to use whatever site you choose.
Get some training, if possible, on how to market well no matter where you are, but also specifically for your chosen platform.
Businesses that have a more fun side may do better on Facebook than those that seem more serious.
Fitness coaches, artists, jewelry and makeup businesses, all may find Facebook a good fit.
Writing, accounting, strategists, and the like, may feel more at home on LinkedIn.
No matter where you chose to market your business, the most important thing is to know your audience.
That’s the best way to deliver value to them.
I haven’t decided yet whether to close my business pages on Facebook. For now, they’re still open, but that may change in the near future.
I’m going to put more focus on LinkedIn, for now, and see where it leads.
I’ll keep you posted. As I learn, I’m happy to share my experiences with you. Maybe they’ll help you with your online marketing efforts.
And if you’re already actively using LinkedIn, look me up. Send me a message. Let’s connect there.
And if you’re on Facebook, well, I’m still there.
You’re just more likely to find me sharing funny posts, talking with friends and posting pictures of my family, furry and four-legged or otherwise. 🙂
I’d love to connect with you there as well.
And hey, maybe we’ll even talk business — every now and then.
If you have a small business that you’re struggling to market, and one of the areas you could use some help with is writing, I can help. Just click here to find out how I can help you create content to grow your business.