I am like every other blogger (minus the 1k+ likes and 50 comments) who clutched my imaginary pearls when I realized that Instagram was down. While Instagram was down for a majority of the day and twitter was working well, it made me realize how much we rely on these social media platforms to push our product (ourselves) and if Instagram permanently shut down how would we continue making our presence in this blogging community known/making money? I realized something about myself, I have relied so heavily on a platform that makes me fucking mad. Every week the algorithm changes and from consistently getting 100+ likes last year to now barely scraping by with 50 its kind of a downer but also makes me get reflective as I try and figure out what my logical next step is. Do I stop relying so heavily on Instagram driving traffic? Do I find different avenues to get people to my brick and mortar (blog) and if that’s the case what does my marketing plan look like in the next few months?
- twitter is a completely different platform and the way we utilize twitter is completely different than Instagram – I mean, ONE viral tweet can change things for you and the people you connect with are different – there are some weirdos but everyone else is kinda awesome. I find that twitter is more fun and off the cuff for me. I get to engage with my friends while also promoting myself. Its a mix of political, humor and realizing how much we all have in common – I mean all of us shouldn’t have had the same damn childhood but I am super thankful for black twitter for existing.
- Facebook is the land of family connections aka my mom likes all my posts and consistently tells me when something is good, meh or needs to be thought out better. I also find that by setting up a business page has helped my blog numbers tremendously. Having people ‘like’ my business page allows them to engage with me and see my blog posts, questions that need answers and everything in between. There are a few issues I need to work on and iron out but mostly I am enjoying learning how to optimize Facebook.
- During this #instagramblackout I realized that I need to do better at promoting myself and stop acting afraid – who is going to go hard for me if I can’t do it myself? It’s amazing what throwing yourself completely into your side hustle can do for your impressions, engagement and numbers. I finally get it, blogging is a numbers game and promotions and marketing yourself is the best way to achieve your goals.
- Newsletter, newsletter, newsletter!
- This one is important. You need to build a newsletter now so that when and if social media somehow collapses you have a connection to the readers who frequent your blogs. You don’t have to send a daily newsletter, it could be a monthly newsletter but build one and keep in contact with the people who enjoy the breath of fresh air you provide. I have one that will be going live at the end of the month – click here to join my mailing list!
All in all, the blackout taught me some valuable lessons about what social media platforms do for me and what I take away from them. We don’t own our social media profiles – yes, we can get money from them but when social media platforms begin to take (if they do) its in our best interest to have something solid to fall back on. My blog is my brick and mortar, it is what I drive people to when I want them to know a little bit about myself. I own it and no one can take that away from me. So, do yourself a favor – build something solid – whether it is a blog, an online store or a newsletter build it and then promote the hell out of it.