Social media has a lot going for it. It's free. And everyone (including you and your clients/customers) gets a hit of dopamine when pinged by a notification. Your people love watching your stories and you love getting comments and DM's. Win-Win!
With all the time people spend on IG, Facebook, TikTok... it makes you wonder: "Since my social accounts inspire so much engagement... What difference could an email list really make in my business?"
Yes, your people need to see you and get to know you on social platforms. And it is possible to generate revenue on social. But your email list is your real money-maker.
2 Major Problems With Relying Solely on Social Media
1. Giving up your power
At one point, reels were all the rage. Now, word on the street is that carousels are making a comeback. And that's just looking at one company's algorithm.
It's nigh impossible to keep up with what's trending on the various platforms. That might be fun for teenagers and consumers who are there to connect and be entertained. But when your livelihood is at stake? No thank you!
And don't forget about the Great Blackout of 2021! Remember... when IG, Facebook, and several other sites went down for SEVEN HOURS?
You can't control the feed. Which means you can't show up for your people when they need you most.
2. Losing productivity in your relationship
What does a "productive" relationship look like between you and your people?
Unless you're creating powerful solutions (for them) and revenue (for you), you're missing out on opportunities.
Using social platforms, you can gather data like...
👍 How many people enjoy what you're putting out there
⏩ What content your people will most readily share with friends/family
💬 What it takes to stir the pot, smooth feathers, or reassure your people
That's all amazing! Yay!
Now, what are you doing with that valuable data? If you're not converting those fans into customers, you're not in a productive relationship. Think about it. You're not serving them through your business offering. And they're not contributing through their purchases.
The Art of Profitability Beyond Social Media
As we've seen so far, your social accounts are valuable tools in your business. Use them to attract people to your brand. Gather a following. Show off your empathy and expertise.
But now consider how your followers can engage in your business. Think about whether and how often they take advantage of the solution you're offering.
You'll only get a return on the investment of your time if you lead your people away from social platforms. Your website and email list can take things to the next level.
A simple, 3-step process to connect
Now that you've built up your know-like-and-trust factor through social channels, your audience is ready to be wooed.
Sometimes, the next step is simply to make an ask: BUY THIS THING! (Phrased as an invitation, of course!)
More often, however, you'll want to develop a more nuanced approach. Here are three strategies you might want to try on:
A lead generator —
a gift that demonstrates how you help solve a specific problem
In his book, Influence, Robert B. Cialdini describes invisible rules that govern our social interactions. One of those rules tells us why a freebie is a compelling and often-used marketing strategy. He says,
The rule [of reciprocation] says that we should try to repay what another person has provided us (p. 23).
Reciprocation is about indebtedness and "future obligation (p. 25)." So if your lead gen is valuable, you'll inspire a sense of gratitude. Which is a great place to start!
And it leads me to the second idea to consider.
A nurture sequence —
emails sent — automatically — to deepen your relationship and heighten your audience's awareness of your superpowers
According to Cialdini, the reciprocity rule's power fades with time. The takeaway for your business: Strike while the iron is hot!
Once your pre-customer receives your gift, bring them along the path toward purchasing. Give them ample opportunity to identify as your ideal customer by telling them about the problems you can help them solve.
Before long, they'll be more than ready for step three.
A sales sequence —
automated emails that turn intrigued bystanders into *actual* customers — like magic
Your people know you, like you, and trust you because you...
let them get to know you on social media
and reassured them that you understand them through your lead gen and nurture sequence
Now you can give them the details about your solution to their problem. What makes your business so unique and wonderful? What dream outcome could they expect? How can they get started ASAP?
A Profitable Social Media Strategy Includes a Website & Email List
It's challenging to make sales on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, LinkedIn, and whatever platform comes next.
Well, let me rephrase: it's challenging to make sales using ONLY social platforms.
After accounting for the limitations of social media and then seeing how much weight a well-oiled email list can haul... it's no wonder posts has a less-than-stellar return on investment!
And that's okay! Now you have some new strategies in your back pocket to complement what you're doing on social. And you even know why some of them work as well as they do! All you have to do is implement these ideas to get to the next level.
So what are you going to try next? How will you set yourself up to help your future clients and customers? Let me know in the comments!