Many entrepreneurs know that they need a social media presence if they want to grow their businesses.
They know this in theory, but yet they still hesitate.
Something keeps them from going all in.
They make excuses – and often, these are very dumb excuses.
The real reasons why entrepreneurs go silent on social media usually run deep.
It’s often than not, it will be one of these 7 common excuses…
1. No time for social media
- A significant 88% of all marketers indicated that their social media efforts have generated more exposure for their businesses. Increasing traffic was the second major benefit, with 78% reporting positive results.
- A significant 64% of marketers are using social media for 6 hours or more and 41% for 11 hours or more weekly.
- It’s interesting to note that nearly 20% of marketers spend more than 20 hours each week on social media.
So basically, the report points out that spending just 6-11 hours a week can reap major positive results for a business. Also, companies that have been engaging on social media longer tended to invest more time on social media because they were happy with the return on their investment.
Conclusion: spending time on social media is a worthwhile investment when marketing your business.
If you’re saying you don’t have time to build your company’s social media presence, what you’re really saying is that it’s not a priority.
But, really – can you afford to NOT invest time into your business growth?
Of course not.
But, let’s get real – what entrepreneur has 6-11 hours to spare in any given week?
A typical social media marketing campaign for any given business can be pretty involved. It can require writing and curating content, shooting and editing videos and photos, graphic design, networking, project management, and keeping up with new media trends.
2. You don’t know what to say on social media
Great content starts with knowing your audience.
Who is your audience? Who do you want to reach and engage? Who are these people who you’d eventually like to convert into paying clients or customers?
Once you know who your target audience is, you need to identify what problem(s) you solve for your audience.
The best content fixes your audience’s problems.
Next, you need to figure out what is unique about what you provide.
If you’re not the only person to deliver a particular product or service to a certain group, you’d better be doing it in a way that stands out.
And finally, knowing what to communicate with your audience is just as important as knowing how to communicate with them, and where.
Don’t be afraid to try new things and stay a couple of steps ahead of your audience!
3. You don’t know where to start on social media
Overwhelm is real.
There are so many different social media platforms, and new ones are popping up all the time.
You do NOT have to be on every social media platform in existence. In fact, it’s better if you’re not, because if you go this route you’ll dilute your resources.
Your time, your money, your focus are all limited resources. It is much more effective to be present on a handful of social media platforms and do them well, rather than to spread yourself too thin.
So, which platforms do you want to focus on?
A great place to start is to look at what’s commonly known as the Social Media Big 5.
Depending on who you ask, the majority will agree the Big 5 are: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Instagram.
The Big 5 are social media’s current heavy-hitters because they have proven track records as powerful marketing tools for business owners.
These social media platforms aren’t disappearing any time soon, and pretty much everyone and anyone you are trying to engage is on at least one of the Big 5.
You don’t have to be on all five of the Big 5. Be on the ones that serve you best, and the ones that you enjoy being on.
4. You don’t have a social media strategy
In business (and in life, for that matter), when he hesitate to act, it’s often because we don’t have a clear strategy of where we are going.
When it comes to social media, you need to have an overall strategy.
You need to know how your Facebook works with your YouTube, how it fits in with what you’re doing on Instagram and LinkedIn, and so on. AND, you need to know your social media works with your other online efforts – that is, your website and email campaigns.
All of these pieces work together, like cogs in a machine, and if you don’t recognize this early on, you will waste your time and resources spinning your wheels.
It is of utmost importance that you take a step back and decide what the big picture of your social media strategy looks like.
Then, you can zoom in and work on the smaller details.
If you’re interested in putting together a social media strategy for your business, sign up now for “8 Steps to a Winning Social Media Strategy”. This online course will give you an immediately actionable game plan, so you can stop wasting time and money, and start growing your business on social media.
5. You’re stuck in your old school ways
I see this one a lot with older businesses.
They’ve been doing things the same way for generations. Maybe about 10–15 years ago they shook things up and built a website and since then, not much else has happened in the marketing department.
These business owners have an especially difficult time understanding why they should shake things up and try social media, because things have been working so well for so long.
Why rock the boat?
Because, things change drastically and quickly these days.
Nowadays, if a client or prospect has a question or issue with your product or service, they won’t pick up the phone or send you an email. They’ll call you out on social media, instead.
They do this because it’s public and they know you’ll have to respond – and respond quickly. And if you don’t, or if you don’t have a social media page for them to interact with, they’re going to lose trust in you and tell everyone about their negative experience dealing with you (also on social media).
You don’t just need to keep up, you need to keep ahead. You need to be cutting edge, or you’ll lose track of your target audience.
Not having a social media presence today is like not having a website 10 years ago – it’s ridiculous if you expect to stay in business.
Do not allow your business to get complacent and stuck in old ways just because something’s been working for you for so long.
6. You are a perfectionist
This one is close to my heart.
Perfectionism is an admirable trait in a business owner. It means you have high standards.
But sometimes perfectionism can be debilitating.
Many perfectionist entrepreneurs fall into the trap of wanting to get their message – their branding – 100% perfect before they start posting on social media.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s a very good idea to get a strong handle on your brand first.
But, it’s never going to be perfect.
You need to realize that.
And, for some of you, this is going to be scary.
Just get your branding as close to 100% as you can and then launch your business on social media.
Whatever you do, DO NOT allow your perfectionism to stop you from launching. You won’t always know what works on social media and what doesn’t until you try it out.
At some point, you will have to bite the bullet and trust that you know all that you can at this stage of the game.
Then, at some point, you will have to revisit your branding.
Accept that your branding will change, based on feedback you get on social media. Pay close attention to what’s working and what’s not working on social media. Engage with your following and observe what comes up in conversations and comments.
Even bad feedback is helpful – just think of it as an opportunity to hone your brand.
7. You are afraid someone is going to steal your content
I get a lot of clients who just flat-out don’t want to post anything business-related on social media because they’re afraid someone’s going to steal all their great ideas.
And, that’s valid.
(Yes, it’s even happened to me.)
Having someone steal your content is frustrating for a variety of reasons.
When earning likes, shares, and comments are imperative to your ranking, you can actually be looking at a dent in your online visibility when someone takes your articles, images, or videos and re-purposes them as their own.
In other words, it’s not just about bragging rights – those Facebook likes can translate into book sales, seminar engagements, product sales, interviews, and all kinds of related financial compensation. In business, stolen content is stolen dollars.
Besides, having your hard work ripped off is just demoralizing.
Know that there are things you can do to protect yourself from plagiarism.
Don’t publish anything you want to keep proprietary, know that you can contact the plagiarizer and reason with them, and if things get out of hand, you can always threaten legal action.
But, you cannot use the threat of plagiarism as an excuse to not create content.
Get in the game, because that’s where you belong. Don’t be afraid to fight for what is yours.
When a business owner says they don’t have time to engage in social media as a means to grow their business, there are usually greater underlying issues than lack of time. These excuses include not knowing where to start or what to say, not having a strategy, being stuck in an old school marketing routine, or being debilitated by perfectionism or a fear of being plagiarized. None of these excuses are valid enough to excuse an entrepreneur from benefiting from a social media campaign. If you are a business owner, you need a social media presence if you want to grow your business – don’t let anything stop you.