“It’s Not You, It’s Me”

Small businesses should stop giving into social media

What would “Dear Abby” say to someone who spends lots of time and energy on a love interest who doesn’t notice or care? “See what else is out there. Play the field. There are plenty of fish in the sea.”

Small and medium businesses need similar “Dear Abby” guidance on their love for social media.

A new survey from research firm BIA/Kelsey found that nearly 75 percent of small businesses use social media for business advertising and promotions. They spend more on average on social media than any other media platform. But less than 26 percent think they see “extraordinary” or “excellent” returns on their investment.

Social media is attractive and exciting. All of your friends really like social media too. But if social media isn’t making you or your sales team happy, then you need to reevaluate how much love and attention you give it.

It’s OK to be wrong about social media. Email understands. And email can help you prompt triple the number of purchases.

Email works nearly 40 times better at getting customers for your business than Facebook and Twitter combined. Every day Americans engage with 11 brands through email, compared to 9 on Facebook and 8 on Twitter. The average return on email marketing is $44.25 for every $1 spent.

Maybe you were so focused on social media that you didn’t notice email waiting patiently on the side for your attention. Maybe you tried email once but it didn’t work out – you were both too new at the digital marketing game to understand each other.

You don’t have to cut social media out of your marketing plan. You can use it effectively in combination with email and other platforms. A simple marriage between the two platforms might have social media buttons appearing in an email newsletter mailed monthly to your customers.

You know your business and what your business needs. If social media isn’t satisfying those needs, then take a chance and try something new. Who knows, it might be The One.

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