When the giant murmurs everyone is affected
One of the things I often hear people wanting to do is scrap their domain and web site and hitch their wagon to one of the giant social media platforms like Facebook, Google+ or Twitter. When pressed or asked to explain their reasoning, I get answers like: "Having a website is a hassle" or "Facebook makes it so easy to add and update my information".
Letting go of your website, or not having one is a big mistake. You don't own these social sites, you are only a participant and are therefore at the mercy of what ever they do. If they implement a policy change, you just have to toe the line. If Google thinks a new feature should be added that best serves them, they do it. Equally the converse applies. If you are using a feature that Twitter deems irrelevant to their strategy, they will take it away. Where does that leave you?
[pullquote align="left" cite="" link="" color="#00CCFF" class="" size=""]"If you really want to do something, you'll find a way. If you don't, you'll find an excuse."
It's obviously a rhetorical question. You need to control and promote your brand not theirs. Social media is great. Owning your own website is greater. It gives you complete control of everything from the branding through to the content. You are not limited to just a few pics and a logo and you can pretty much post and discuss whatever you want.
Facebook has recently been accused of having a news bias. Is it true? Perhaps. Perhaps not. But they will probably be making a few tweaks to sort things out. These tweaks may affect you. Equally they may not affect you. But why leave it to chance? An incredible amount of time and effort is invested by you into your your business. Make sure you get the return you deserve. Having control of your main on-line presence affords you the opportunity to run whatever promotional and news oriented campaigns you might need or want to.
Experience points us in the optimal direction
It's better to establish and cultivate relationships on social media, and then lure them to your website. These are your customers, neither Facebook's, nor Google's or Twitter's. When last did you download your customer list from Facebook?
Your web site affords you greater control over how you engage with your customers.
Don't give away the keys to the Kingdom. Yes, it's super easy to create content and then engage and interact with your customers on Facebook, Twitter and other social platforms, but at what cost? Social media is one of the best ways to interact with your customers - absolutely! But once once the interaction is done, you need to take them home. And where is home? Your web site. So while social media has a place, don't lose sight of what is needed to protect the integrity of your brand, the relationships created, and the best return from your on-line investment - owning your own domain and web site.