Hey there, my fabulous listener, welcome to episode 95 of the Small Business Made Simple Podcast.
Thank you for lending me your ears today – I know you have lots of choices, so I sincerely appreciate me being one of them!
If you’re a first time listener, super super welcome, I am so pleased to have you here. I am your host Jenn Donovan, and it’s my job, via this podcast, social media and everywhere else actually, to make your business life simpler.
I’m a thought leader when it comes to marketing here in Australia and I’m a marketing strategist for small business.
Why? Because business can be lonely and hard and complicated and it’s hardly ever easy, but it should be simple or at least simpler, so that’s my commitment you to on the Small Business Made Simple podcast!
This episode is sponsored by Spend With Us – www.spendwithus.com.au an online marketplace for rural and regional businesses. If you’re already thinking about your Christmas shopping, and want to support rural Australian businesses who have suffered through the prolonged drought, last summer’s bushfires and now Covid – head to www.spendwithus.com.au Even if you’re looking for gift vouchers, you can buy site wide gift vouchers and support the 500+ small businesses on the platform. For corporates or bulk order, the gift cards can even be personalised for free!
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Today, it’s slightly off topic as well as being on topic of social media and marketing.
Have you watched the social dilemma on Netflix?
The social dilemma is a documentary about how technology has been made for us but to make money for them. Interestingly, it’s the techs behind the businesses of Facebook, Instagram, Google etc that are doing to talking and explaining.
It’s like they are saying, sorry we invented it but now can’t stop it. Like putting the cart before the horse and then having no control over the horse!
It talks about why we are addicted to our phones and how that’s no accident.
Now, I do think that you should watch it. If you have children, I think you should watch it a second time with them (give yourself the space to watch it by yourself first), but I’m not recommending you watch it for you to then freak out!
For most of us, who have been on social media a while, have listened, watched, learnt about social media, they really aren’t telling us anything we didn’t already know or suspect.
But it’s nonetheless interesting.
It’s interesting because we are the saleable product – yep you and me. Humans, or our time and how habits and our thoughts, are the saleable item.
There’s never been a time when this is true before. Trafficking in humans is illegal – clearly – but here, via technologies we use every day, we are for sale – not physically, clearly, but our time and attention – 100%.
So, the irony of all this is that you are probably listening to this on your smart phone, you might have learnt about this podcast on social media etc – there’s massive irony for sure.
But believe it or not, the social dilemma is not what I wanted to talk to you about, necessarily today. I think you should watch it and watch it from a business owners’ point of view, but today I really wanted to talk to you about building empires on other people’s real estate.
It’s something I find myself talking about more and more and more.
So, what does that mean – building an empire on other people’s real estate?
Basically, it means building your brand, your business, your “empire” on land that’s owned by Mark Zuk or Microsoft (as in LinkedIn) and so forth.
Land or space you seriously have no control over, and never will – hence watch the social dilemma!
My world isn’t very big. My social world is probably bigger than most peoples, with around a million impressions a month, not just mine, but overall, for my brands.
BUT my world is still quite small – clients, acquaintances, and friends/family.
However, I would hear, see, read, touch base with at least a large handful each month with people who have had their social accounts hacked or lost their social accounts because of other reasons, e.g./ competitors playing hardball, or have someone pretending to be them, and potentially ruining your brand.
I’ve had a personal experience with a “hate” page being made against one of my brands – so not not not fun and frankly didn’t end the way I wanted it to.
In fact, now I just ignore it – it no longer concerns me and rarely think about it – other than for good reasons like an example on my podcast!
Despite my best efforts, and calling in all my big guns, connections, and friends, there was nothing I could do – nothing that Facebook hierarchy was prepared to do to help.
Ce La Vie!
So, this podcast ep is around warning you, alerting you and pleading with you to do some of these things, that I’ll get to in a sec, to make yourself and your “empire” safe on platforms you don’t own or control.
I’m going to give you 3 tips to save yourself the heartache of losing what you’ve worked so hard for, either temporarily or forever.
- Start an email list TODAY. No excuses, no arguments, no “I don’t know how or why or what to do with it” – just DO IT.
I cannot tell you how so so so important an email list is going to be in your business if you have a fall out with social media, get hacked or loose the ability to control your empire online.
Ask yourself, and I know I’ve mentioned it on many podcast eps before, “if social media disappeared tomorrow, would you still have a business?”.
If the answer is no, you have a problem. A serious problem.
Would you build a house on a piece of land you don’t own? Of course, not – well this isn’t much different.
My most recent experience with an acquaintance who lost control of their social media led to 10,000’s of dollars lost in revenue, each day through 100% no fault of their own (except they didn’t have a contingency plan – aka email list).
After 3 weeks of heartache they got in touch with me and I worked on getting it back for at least 7 hours. I called in favours, I reached out to my network, I sat on online help lines patiently taking to robots to get to a human, I made calls, I did everything I knew to try and help.
After 1 week (or 4 weeks in total and 100s of 1000’s of lost revenue later) he’s all sweet again.
There’s no phone number for the help desk of Facebook – it’s just relentlessly trying to get someone to emphasis enough with you to escalate your problem in order to get it solved.
All this heartache, when, if they had an email list, could’ve been a lot less stressful with a series of emails out to their loyal fans, past customers, future customers, that said, hey guys, we’re offline – still here though – lets go back to the old fashioned phone – call me if you need me – here’s my direct number.
As much as I felt for the business owner I was working with, I was also a little frustrated that it had to be so stressful, when being more strategic with your marketing and how you communicate with your customers, could’ve made life a little easier and perhaps more profitable during the “no social down time”.
I have so many examples of this, I could talk forever, but please hear the pleading in my voice, start an email list TODAY.
I am always looking for signs in my life and my business and I think this, in the past week, has been a huge one for me. 2021 I think will see me diving more into teaching email marketing – so watch this space!
My next two tips for being safer aren’t quite as long and there’s no lecture accompanying them – or not much!
Tip 2 – on Facebook – for your Facebook Business Page – have two admins – always. If it’s a precious resource to your business, put some security around it by having another admin. Not a person who’s an editor etc – another admin.
Of course, someone you trust!
It just means if someone tries to hack you – they need to hack two people to get control – in theory anyway.
Tip 3 – on Instagram – set up your double authentication. Go to your bio, settings, security – two factor authentication. Again, it’s safety in numbers when it comes to hackers.
Pinkie promise me you will do all 3 of these things (the last two RIGHT NOW) in the next 72 hours.
Not sure how to start an email list – well listen to the podcast eps – 9 and 10 or just start to organise email addresses in a spreadsheet. Name (first and last – separate columns), email, mobile number if you can.
If you’re emailing your clients regarding work, quotes, bills etc – you have email addresses – sort them!
I feel like I’ve been shouty on this podcast – so I do apologise – but I am doing it for you – yep you!
I truly want the best for you and your business – so think of me as your business fairy godmother – just looking after your bits!
I do recommend you watch the Social Dilemma – I am always about information being power – the more informed we are the more informed our decisions are.
Have a fabulous week. I’ll be back next Thursday with another great episode to help you simplify your business in 2020. I have some amazing guests coming up – can’t wait to share them with you! If you ever find sales icky – tune in next week as my guest shows you they really aren’t!
If you’re enjoying this podcast, which if you have listened to here – you hopefully are, don’t forget to subscribe, share this episode with another superstar business owner who’s doing the daily grind and would appreciate someone making their business simpler, and leave a rating or review to show how much you are loving this free weekly content.
See you next week on the podcast for episode 95. But in the meantime, let’s hang out on social and get social on social – you’ll find me on Instagram, Facebook and my fav LinkedIn.
But whatever you do,
……..remember small business peeps, as my opening song says, there’s no point in dreaming small!