Why We Need To Stop Relying On Social Media For Our Businesses

Well yesterday was a striking reminder for me as to why we need to avoid relying on social media as business owners. 

Out of the blue my Pinterest account, which is my main source of traffic to my blog, eBook and sign ups for my email list, was suspended. 

6 million monthly unique views, over 6,000 followers, and thousands of pins all gone in seconds, without any warning. 

Three neutral coloured woollen jumpers piled on top of each other.

Thankfully I managed to email Pinterest and when they looked into it, my account had been accidentally been picked up as spam.

They instantly reinstated it and thankfully all my pins were still there.

Short of a slight drop in my engagement stats since I hadn’t been active for 4 days, plus what I’m assuming to be a clear-out of fake/bot followers, everything seemed to be fine.

However, this whole experience has really brought home to me the message I see so many freelancers saying over and over again:

Don’t rely on social media as a core part of your business strategy. 

It doesn’t matter if it is Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter or even Facebook, the simple fact is we don’t own those social media platforms and our accounts can be suspended or deleted at any time. 

All the content you’ve created for it, all the followers you’ve gained and all the time you’ve put into it would be gone, and there’s absolutely nothing you can do about it. 

[Related: My Plans For Jade Marie Moving Into 2020]

I had been working on increasing my DA, SEO and email list subscribers over the past few months anyway, but this has really made me consider the strategies I use and my plan for growing my business in the future. 

Pinterest might be a fantastic way to promote new posts or products, it’s done wonders for my traffic and growing my email list and I’ve even written an eBook on it, but at the end of the day, it’s still not a channel I own.

A white cup of coffee, resting on a bed covered in white and grey bedding.

Obviously, I’m not going to stop using social media altogether. Pinterest accounts for 90% of my traffic and that isn’t traffic I can currently afford to lose.

Even so, I’m going to try and avoid relying on it quite as much as I did before. 

Instead, I’m going to focus on the channels that I do control such as growing my email list, building a community and restarting my newsletter again. 

What are your thoughts on using social media as a core part of your business strategy? Is it worth the risk, or is it always better to work on the channels you own? 

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  • I’m so sorry that this happened to you, and I really hope you will be able to get your Pinterest account back! Thank you for sharing your story with us, because it’s a real wake-up call and reminder that these kinds of things can happen. I’ve been building up my Pinterest (although it’s nowhere near your numbers of views and followers) and it’s currently my number 1 source of traffic too. I now know to put more focus into gaining traffic in other ways without relying on social media too much!

  • Jade Marie says:

    Thank you so much, I really hope so too! That’s one of the reasons I wanted to share what happened, it’s slightly embarrassing but I always thought “it could never happen to me” and relied on it way too much! Well done for building up your own Pinterest though, it’s a great thats it’s become your number one source of traffic ☺️ but yes, definitely don’t solely rely on it!

  • I’m so sorry this has happened to you, hopefully it’ll all be sorted out quickly. It’s true what you say though that we shouldn’t solely rely on social media as we don’t own those platforms. I always think I should try and build up an email list, but the thought of it terrifies me…But this has really made me think that maybe I should just bite the bullet and try and set up a newletter which is something I’ve been thinking about for some time.

  • Jade Marie says:

    Thank you lovely! I’d definitely recommend setting one up, even if you don’t use it straight away ☺️ you could make some kind of free product which you could offer as an opt-in to get people to sign up, and then work on the newsletter idea while your list grows and you build up your confidence ☺️ you could even start off just sending one once a month at the beginning if you wanted to ☺️

  • Emma says:

    Oh my gosh, that sounds so stressful. I’d be heartbroken if I lost my Instagram account. I know I should do more with my newsletter.

  • That’s so bad that that happened to you! I totally get what you mean because once you loose it, it can cause a big effect for your business. I definitely need to stop seeing social media as being the be all and end all. X

  • This is very scary but also encouraging. It must’ve been so shocking to see something you’ve been working on for so long to just disappear in a second. I knew about the risk of only promoting my blog through social media and how important it is to grow the following through newsletter but I kind of just went the easier way. I’m guilty on relying too much on social media and not working enough on much safer ways to grow my blog. Thank you for sharing this as it really put some things into perspective.

  • Lucy says:

    I’m so sorry to hear what happened to your Pinterest Jade, I’d be so upset if that happened to me too. You’re absolutely right though, we shouldn’t keep relying on our social media to help promote our business, when things like what has happened to you happen, it’s a clear example as to why we shouldn’t count on social media all of the time x

    Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk

  • Emily Ann says:

    I am so sorry this happened to you! I’ve heard of Pinterest doing this to other bloggers and I have no idea why. All of your hard works and pins… I’m truly sorry! It is weird to rely on social media for most of our marketing, promotions, and business as bloggers and business people. It can help out a blogger/business so much, but it it all goes under, what do we do then?? It’s definitely a double-edged sword! I think having your own base (aka your blog/website) is great for holding down the fort, but social media is just an add on.

    Emily | https://www.thatweirdgirllife.com

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