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Social media is NOT the answer

Wed 5th Feb 2014
By Todd
Social Media

What? Did you just read that right? Yes, you did. Regular blog readers will know that I think social media is brilliant. It’s an incredible platform, it’s shaping the marketing world, it’s making or breaking celebrities who are brave enough to join it, and it’s the only reason – THE ONLY REASON – we have a business.

But social media is not going to solve all your problems and it certainly isn’t the only thing your competitors are doing either.

“If your business is crap, social media will just help people realise it quicker!”

That’s a quote right there. Social media won’t fix a failing business. Social media won’t get the world into your shop on the high street. Social media won’t get your business off the ground. It will just help people find out about you more quickly – whether it’s good or bad!

Social media is there to tell the story of your business as it grows, and it helps people to buy into you and it. The problem with social media is it’s so dammed popular and so dammed public that everyone focuses on the social output of their competitors and thinks they should just replicate that. Or worse, they think that social media is all they should be doing!


Social media is NOT the answer


Jo's Correctional Facility - social media marketing


The Next Web - The pitfalls of copycat marketing
The Next Web – The pitfalls of copycat marketing

Social media is merely how YOU see the activity people choose to share

I love social media and I love what it can do for a business. It’s absolutely the way forward for me, and our business is rapidly growing because of it. But (and it’s a big but) we do a lot more than tweet, +1, like, post, RT, share and update. We work very hard behind the scenes; we have a strategy driven by passion, energy, enthusiasm and above all – skills.

We meet many people in our exciting entrepreneurial world who see others making a real success of their business. Because they see it on social media they wrongly assume all they need to do is copy their output and the rest will come.

Social media is a communication tool, not a business model!

Social media is not a new thing. It’s really just a new(ish) way to communicate, educate and inform people about your business. Many see the successes from other businesses on social media and announce, “We must be on social media” before first asking themselves, “WHY should we be on social media?” Just because everyone else is doing it, it doesn’t mean you should!

If we look at some of the great successes of social media recently; the Superbowl tweets by J C Penney, the response by Orio Cookies to the blackout in the previous Superbowl, or the epic conversation on Twitter between Tesco mobile, Yorkshire Tea and many other large brands, we see a common theme – huge businesses with resources, structure and marketing prowess.



Now I’m not saying that you can’t do it. I’m just saying that these bluechip companies are USING social media… they’re not here because of it, and simply copying their social media won’t sell you 15,000,000 tonnes of carrots a week!

This is the same for your competitors. Their social media output is what they choose to share. Their updates are to entice people, to excite people and it should also make them sound busy and successful – well, you wouldn’t buy from a quiet, unsuccessful business, would you?!

My advice here is to concentrate on your own backyard and stop peering over the fence. You have it within yourself to be the best you can be. But remember you are the only person that can change your life and your business. Social media is cool, for sure, but it really isn’t the answer to the main problems in your business.

The answer to your problems is you – not your social media or anyone else’s. Get your structure right, set your marketing plan and start building your business. Then (and only then) share your story on social media so that people can be as excited (as you should be) about what you’re up to.

Start looking at yourself instead – because only you can drive your business forward.

Over to you…

Are you fixated on other people’s successes on social media?

Or are you busy cutting your own lawn and posting it on instagram to notice how green theirs is?

Please comment or share – I’d like to know what you think.

Tags associated with this article

Social Media

2 comments on this article

  • AndyDoesWords at 13:54pm on February 6th 2014

    Hi Todd.

    Well written and pragmatic.

    1. Graham Todd at 23:32pm on February 18th 2014

      Andy. Thank you 😉

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