BY MATT DE SARLE
Facebook and YouTube are laying the smack down on small businesses.
If there were a consistent trend revealed in two major updates this week, it would be that the digital giants are building a glass ceiling above the growth potential of cash-strapped small business owners who are looking for a marketing edge.
Or, at least, that is a popular thought.
First, there was another mysteriously cryptic update from Facebook (and its perpetual moving-target-algorithm). Mark Zuckerberg says that, “you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media,” as his platform pushes for more “meaningful” interactions between people and families.
Then, there was a major update from YouTube in which it took away the potential for small YouTubers to monetize their channels. Instead of earning a small residual, those video producers now are required to have 4,000 watch hours in the past year and 1,000 total subscribers.
Here are three reasons why I argue small business owners should chill out and actually welcome these changes
1. Aren’t you diversified?
Like a great investment strategy, a digital marketing plan should be well-balanced. A business owner might be concerned if a majority of her revenues come from one client. That one client may experience a change and stop doing business. In a similar respect, if your business marketing was reliant solely on YouTube or Facebook in the first place, you weren’t doing it right.
And it’s not just about a digital marketing plan. Use this time of major change to “re-balance your portfolio” with traditional methods of marketing. Don’t undervalue the benefits of going out and meeting prospective clients and business associates where they are. Business networks are a great example.
2. You’re the best in your area, right?
Whether its a geographic area or a niche that you serve remotely, the marketing content you have been producing on Facebook or YouTube should be addressing the problem that your business is solving and why it’s the best.
Therefore, if you are truly serving that niche, you should still be providing resources and fostering a community that is growing on Facebook or YouTube. Offer content that keeps them coming back.
Inbound marketing is an important piece of this equation. If you continue to create more relevant content for your target audience, watch times will continue to improve on your company website, for example.
Continue to refine how your product or service differs. Create a community around that narrative.
3. Bring the adults to the table.
This whole conversation feels like Facebook and YouTube are taking dessert away from us children, doesn’t it? If you believe in that analogy, then also realize that your company can be the adult in the room.
Yes, now you might need to actually learn how to (or hire an agency to) use Facebook Ads Manager and put careful thought, consideration, and produce content specific for one advertising campaign. Take advantage of this moment. Accept the challenge.
Instead of complaining about the “death blow for organic reach,” learn about how your brand can become the leader in its area by investing more time and resources into Facebook and YouTube. Let your competitors be the ones who complain and languish with inactivity on those platforms.
The truth is, we all know that the policies of these platforms are ever-changing. If you unplug now, or even this quarter, you will be one or two steps behind being able to take advantage during the next policy change.
Matty D. Media is a video production and social media marketing company based in Lawrence, Kansas.
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