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Don’t throw out the old school yet — Lessons from the Facebook and Instagram Outage

In our digital-centric era, social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram play an important role in connecting businesses with their audiences. But the recent (and as of this writing still ongoing) outage that rendered these two platforms inaccessible has reminded me of what I teach my clients and that’s the importance of integrating the old with the new. Traditional methods, such as having a dedicated website and utilizing email marketing are critical to maintain to cover your bases in marketing and communication strategies.

Gen-X business owners are sometimes scrutinized for not leveraging social media in the way millennials and GenZers do. There is some credence to that criticism BUT-we also are right in that putting all your marketing eggs in one basket is ridiculous. When that “basket” crashes, everything is broken and you are at the mercy of some quirk in the system with no viable, established way to reach your audience.

Relying solely on FB/IG social media for marketing and communication can and like today, has, proven to be risky. This outage of Facebook and Instagram has left many small businesses unable to engage with their audience and it underscores and reiterates the need for a more diversified approach. By keeping old-school methods in your mix, Businesses can mitigate the risks associated with platform outages and shift quickly to maintain communication with their audience.

1. Your Facebook page should not your website. PERIOD.

Having your own website offers several advantages. It provides a centralized hub for your brand, where customers can learn more about your products or services and make purchases. A website also gives you more control over your online presence, allowing you to tailor your messaging and brand image to better suit your target audience. AND you could still have a “meeting ground” to rally your audience or sell your products and services.

2. Instagram should not be the only place people can know how to buy from you.

Email marketing remains a powerful tool for businesses to connect with their audience. Unlike social media, which can be subject to algorithm changes and outages, email marketing allows you to directly reach your audience’s inbox. This direct line of communication can be invaluable for promoting new products or services, sharing updates, and building customer loyalty. Especially on a day like today — -when you can’t post a cute pic and announce a sale.

3. Today is “too late” to start building an email list or to create a website.

Had your email list already been in place, you could have sent a mass message out to your audience to tell them things like..

  • The regular Facebook meeting group has been moved to another date, or on your website, You tube, X, TikTok etc. The key is you would have a way to communicate to inform and redirect your audience.

  • Or our IG Live will be on You Tube tonight in the advent that the platforms have not been restored. Be sure to follow us there!

  • Your website could feature an update on your sale, or promotion letting people know that you are extending it and to stay tuned to the website and follow you on YouTube to stay connected.

Diversifying your marketing and communication strategies to include traditional methods like having a website and utilizing email marketing can help you reach a wider audience and build a more resilient brand. While social media remains an important tool, it should not and cannot be the sole focus of your marketing efforts. By integrating traditional, dare I say “GenX” level methods into your strategy, you can ensure that your business remains connected and engaged with your audience, even in the face of platform outages.

For more on small business marketing — check out this article .

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