You don’t own your Facebook followers, but you do own your email list.
Oh, did you hear? Facebook made good on its threats and pulled news and media pages from its platform in Australia.
And, let me tell you, for many news and media organisations, there was denial, anger, bargaining, and short bursts of depression, but I didn’t see much acceptance.
After a week of teeth grinding and hand wrenching, many were left wondering, who would blink first? And then, just like that; It was over. The news was restored on Facebook in Australia.
There was no need to accept the catastrophe. With a big collective sigh of relief, and before we had time to blink twice, Facebook agreed to the new terms set down by the Australian government and the perceived disaster was averted. For now.
The big wakeup call.
During that week of what some might describe as; blissful silence, the news outlets scrambled.
Oh, hey, yoohoo, over there, cried the editors and their entire marketing department.
Did you know we have an App? Yep, we sure do, and you can also subscribe to our daily newsletter, and we’ll email you with all the news of the day. Nothing petty, you understand—just the cold hard facts.
We’ll keep it real. We believe in the integrity of journalism. Yep. We’re here for you, so please can you be here for us, they softly whimpered.
Okay, I know a little tongue in cheek, and I could go on…
But the point is, no business owns their Facebook or Instagram followers. Here today, gone tomorrow. That’s a big chunk of potential revenue in anyone’s language.
A prescient warning?
But what does this timely message from Facebook mean for you?
Well, here’s the thing, Facebook and Instagram and all the other social media platforms are great. I’d go so far as to say they’re brilliant. It’s been transformative.
Small and large business have found a new way to speak directly to their customer and put a face to their business. And, if you’re a savvy small business owner with the time to invest? Well, you can create a social following virtually for free. Not bad. Right?
In so many ways, social media is a powerful platform. It’s changed the way we do business, but so has the rest of the internet at large.
But, again. You don’t own your list of social media followers and if Facebook decided to pull the plug on your business page? I know, it’s a chilling thought.
Perhaps, instead of looking at your social media as a core part of your business, it’s time to view it as the icing on the cake and start building your email list and engage your audience in multiple ways and not be fully reliant on social media.
Direct engagement creates a personal connection with your customers, and unless they unsubscribe, you’ve got a data list that you own.
It’s a dedicated community to build upon, engage with, and reach out to when you’ve got something to share with them.
Facebook would never do that to you?
Okay, sure, Facebook would never do that to you? Of course, you’re right, they probably wouldn’t.
Except they’ve proved that they can and would if circumstances were not in their favour.
Wouldn’t it be a comfort knowing the extra energy you’ve put into your business and the community of adoring and raving fans you’ve nurtured is yours for keeps? Putting all your eggs in one social media basket? Maybe not such a great idea.
I have a few ideas for you.
If you don’t already, set up a signup form on your website and then promote it. Create an onboarding email sequence and then continue to nurture your list with what your business has to offer.
And, your website? How’s it looking? Just a placeholder or an active part of your business? Sure, blogging is time consuming, but it’s also a way to engage and attract new customers to your business.
Is your website and the content contained within and afterthought or the doorway to your business?
Keeping your online image up-to-date and fresh is just as important as every other aspect of your business.
Need help with your blogging, emailing and website content? Great! Get in touch here.