There. We said it. We’ve been wanting to get this off our chest for a while now, but we didn’t want to sound childish.
Disclaimer: we don’t mean you have to pay someone like us to do your social media marketing. You can do all your marketing yourself, but that doesn’t mean that social media is or, (more to the point) should be free.
Now, while we’re going to mostly mention Facebook in this article, we want to make it clear that this blog applies to all social media platforms, and in fact all marketing platforms.
We’re not going to make any friends with this statement but: Social media marketing isn’t free marketing, and in fact, there are very few marketing opportunities that are free.
It’s easy to see where this idea came from, however – and it’s completely understandable too. Facebook is technically a free platform for its users, and even businesses can set up their own pages for free. Posting content is free. Inviting friends to like your page is free. Sharing your posts are free. So yeah, in a sense it kind of is a free marketing platform.
However, as soon as Facebook announces that its algorithm will change to improve the user experience, business owners feel personally stung, because it will affect their marketing strategy. It is unfortunate, and we sympathise, but at the same time it shows that there needs to be a change in the way business owners approach their Facebook marketing.
Because let’s not forget, the point of marketing is to make sales. Ergo, the point of your business Facebook is to make sales.
Long gone are the honeymoon days where a business could post a blurry picture on Facebook with a caption that, in so many words, says “buy our stuff”, and people would flock to buy it. Those were glory days, we’re sure, but those were years and years ago – in fact we’re not even sure those days existed. So why should the strategy be the same now?
When we say Facebook marketing should cost money, many people assume we’re saying “pay for ads” or “pay us to do ads” – that’s not the point at all.
What we’re saying is:
- Invest in your images and videos. Don’t just take a blurry, unlit phone picture. Buy a better camera or pay someone to take amazing photos for you.
- Pay to be a spotlight member in Facebook groups of your demographic.
- Pay for memberships for apps and software that improve your marketing, such as Canva, Hootsuite, and more.
- Pay influencers to promote your page and product to their audiences.
- Pay another page with more followers to promote your product or page – or a specific post – to their audience.
These are not expensive options, and not all of them are necessary, but it’s our way of highlighting that your social media strategy should not be all about how much you can get for free, but how strong your strategy is, and what the end goal is. A huge marketing budget is great for some, but smart spending and a strong strategy is even better.
We’ll be making a blog post breaking down these 5 options soon, so keep your eyes peeled!