Every business should undergo the “do or die” syndrome more than once. It forces you to reassess your priorities, your core values, and your uniqueness. Why do folks do business with you? Why do you do business with them? These are questions that I have the privilege of asking on a regular basis since I have invested in myself and my company by working with a business coach. However, in this economy, more and more businesses are asking these questions out of an urgent nature. Will I be in business next month? Next year?
Fast forward to a luncheon I attended today. I had the pleasure to hear an acquaintance speak about what drove her into business. Notice that I said “into,” not “out of.” One of the points she made was that she didn’t have a Plan B. There was no other option. In sharing that with someone shortly after she launched her business, she was told, “Good. Folks with a Plan B almost never succeed with Plan A.”
Enter social media. Businesses, with or without a Plan B or a business coach are facing tough times. Polka Dot Impressions has lost 2 clients over this last month who indicated that they’re having to make tough financial decisions during a crisis time in their business. Social media seems a luxury to them right now, and so working with a social media management company seems extravagant. Good decision? Not for us, but we understand. But it’s not about us. The bigger question is, “Is it a good decision to omit social media for your business?”
I read many, many articles on social media every day – thank God for speed reading! Today, I came across a favorite site and an article titled, “New Research Shows That Small Business and Social Media Are Coming to Terms,” written by John Janstch. Here are a couple of key points from it. (“SMBs” is Small Businesses)
- Healthy share of marketing efforts: 77% of SMBs indicate social media accounts for 25% or more of their total marketing efforts.
- Spending set to rise: 84% of SMBs plan to increase their use of social media at least a little in the future.
- 22% of SMBs use consultants to aid with their efforts, though many SMBs have simply added social media to the list of existing duties of marketing employees.
There were lots of other very interesting numbers in this article, but two things jumped out from these numbers. First, time spent marketing with social media is on the rise, and secondly, money spent on social media is on the rise.
The question for small business owners is, “Where will you get more time or more money for social media?” Social media is not going away. There is no Plan B here. Your business may depend on how you incorporate social media into your marketing efforts as 77% of small business owners have already discovered. I encourage you to read the Duct Tape Marketing post, but more importantly than that, I encourage you to honestly assess how you plan to add strategic use of social media into your company’s unique online presence – before it’s too late!
 Jantsch, John. “New Research Shows That Small Business and Social Media Are Coming to Terms.” Duct Tape Marketing. 12 Sept 2012. Web.