19-year-old Alex Rankin, who sells handmade rings via her Instagram store said that on the day Facebook and Instagram were down for six hours, her earning was zero. On other days, she would earn a little over $150. “Without social media, I wouldn’t have a business. It’s how I advertise my rings and how I take my orders for the rings, and how I get my page out there,” she was quoted saying.
Social media is undoubtedly a powerful marketing tool for businesses to reach out to a large group of audiences. In fact, it is the only means through which small businesses can compete with larger brands. However, incidents like a mere six-hour outage can change the narrative in a moment’s notice.
The recent disruption of the services of Facebook, Whatsapp and Instagram once again reminded businesses of the unpredictability of the social media channels. Remember the time when platforms like Yahoo and Hi5 dominated the web world?
Thus, while brands become too preoccupied trying to increase their impression and engagement on those mainstream social media channels, chances are, the customer journey is not as linear as they think it is. It is imperative that meanwhile, they explore other marketing tactics as well.
Building a strong online presence through SEO’s and digital advertisements is what many marketing experts suggest doing. Display advertising is yet another digital marketing technique which is said to be effective in driving brand awareness at a relatively low cost. Along the same lines are digital radio channels like Spotify and iHeart which are also accessible for marketers.
“It’s important to reach consumers through a variety of channels to reinforce brand recognition and drive conversions. Each channel supports the others and compounds, almost exponentially, the results for your brand,” said Molly Phillips, director of client strategy, Roar Media.
Most importantly, even though leads, sales and conversions are what brands thrive on, don’t ethos and values come above all? With this said, the complaints filed by Facebook’s whistle-blower, Frances Haugen really make us sit back and ponder over the reliability of the platform and our own values and beliefs as businesses.