Why Social Media is NOT Your Marketing Plan

There’s no doubt social media has revolutionized the marketing world—but that doesn’t mean it has to become our entire world. Sure, it’s a cost-effective, immediate way to directly engage with audiences. And while social media is an essential aspect of any marketing plan, its power should be used to complement other communication channels, not dominate them.

Diversify your marketing plan

When it comes to marketing, sometimes bigger is better. The media multiplier effect means that your ads become more effective the more channels you utilize. Just like with your stock portfolio, it’s important to diversify. Traditional media like TV, print, and billboards along with digital marketing like search and email are still central to effective marketing plans. Each platform has its own pros and cons, so utilize each of them to its full potential and keep your plan balanced for maximum value.

“It’s important to have a well-rounded marketing plan so that you can reach your potential customers through multiple touchpoints,” says marketer Alison Coye. “Why put all your eggs in one basket when you can cover social media, email marketing, content marketing, paid advertising, SEO and so much more?”

Protect yourself from the pitfalls of social media  

Every so often, social media platforms like Facebook (now Meta) and Instagram will experience a temporary outage. When that happens, it’s become clear just how fragile our social media landscape can be. All of your content, followers, and likes belong to the platform and are therefore subject to the unpredictability of technology. 

A diverse media plan ensures that your assets are not completely reliant on the success of a singular platform. Not to mention, updated algorithms make it increasingly difficult for brands to achieve organic reach in their audiences’ feeds. “Social media is a great tool, but it can’t be the only one in your toolbox,” says Coye. “If Facebook disappears tomorrow and it’s the only platform you invested in, then your hard work goes unnoticed.  Rely on the tools that you can control first, like your website, and then branch out to the more ‘trendy’ platforms.”

Start on social media, but don’t stay there. 

While social media may have some pitfalls, it is still a great way to connect with potential customers. However, it’s important to diversify your communication channels and tactics. For a small business with a shoestring budget, social media can organically increase the reach and awareness of your business. Once you’re able to connect with leads and customers on social media, don’t keep them there. Building an email list with leads and customers is the best way to make sure your marketing activities are not solely reliant on social media. This way, when outages do happen on social media, there’s no need to panic because you have another way to connect with your target audience.  

If you’re wondering how to get your leads on social media to give you their email address, it’s simple: incentivize them. Offering incentives like coupons or other free items is a great way to grow your email list

Social media is an important part of marketing in the digital age and be a real game-changer for small businesses. Social media, however, is not a replacement for a thorough and robust marketing plan. Diversifying your channels, strategies, and tactics is the best way to grow your business and get scalable success.