Contrary to popular belief, social media is not the silver bullet to cure all ills. It is not guaranteed to bring you customers, nor does it necessarily make your business look more credible online. Different seasons call for different solutions, and I have never been a believer in selling one-size-fits-all marketing solutions. In fact, I often talk people out of implementing social media.
You aren’t following up with the prospects you already have.
If you have been in business any length of time, you most likely have a gold mine of prospects sitting right in front of you. This includes your past customers, current customers who could be spending more, your professional network, and the people who once expressed interest and didn’t move forward. If you have not implemented a follow-up system to nurture these leads, social media is not likely to move the needle in your business—nor is any other marketing tool. Any lead generation vehicle is only as good as your ability to follow through.
You’re priced out of the market.
Sadly, small business owners often fail to do even basic market research before launching new ventures. If the value that you deliver can easily be obtained elsewhere for a lot less, you’ll likely just spin your wheels on social media and generate a lot of web traffic or initial interest that doesn’t translate into closed business.
You don’t have the capacity to handle more customers.
This is a bigger problem than many small businesses think it is. If your phone rings more than 6 times before someone answers it (or if prospects are directed to a voicemail box)—or if you’re telling prospects that you can’t meet with them until next month, you have a capacity issue. Your overhead or labor cost may be too high, or your prices may be too low. Your delivery system may be inefficient. But if you’re putting in 12-hour days just to keep up with the workflow, social media is not going to fix that problem.
You have an unclear marketing message.
If it takes you an hour to explain what business you’re in, social media will do you more harm than good. Putting out an inconsistent or incoherent message makes your business look sloppy, unprofessional and even unstable. If you cannot articulate what you deliver in one to three concise sentences, don’t talk about your business on social media until you can.
In order for social media to generate sales leads that convert into paying customers, your business needs to have a solid foundation in place. If any of the above sounded familiar and you’d like to do something about it, give me a call.