Founder of The Model Masterclass, branding specialist and model coach Kate Heussler is an expert on equipping her clients to reach their personal and business goals with digital media. There are advantages and disadvantages to focusing your efforts on a website vs your social media.
Here Kate, explores these pros and cons to help you make a more informed decision for your business.
“Your website is your digital storefront, while social media is just the window display.”
Advantages of Focusing on your Social Media Channels:
Wide Reach: Social media platforms have a large and diverse user base, which allows businesses to reach a wider audience than a website.
Low Cost: Setting up a business page on social media is often free or low cost, which makes it an affordable option for start-ups and small businesses. PSA: A new cost to add to your business budget is for social media verification. Twitter is now asking all users for US $8/month for a blue tick, while Meta Verified are now asking for US $15/month to give your personal Instagram and Facebook the blue tick (if you’re not already eligible as a person of notability, status or authenticity).
Quick & Easy: It’s relatively easy and quick to set up and start using social media platforms. You can create posts, share content, and engage with your audience in real-time.
Strong Customer Engagement: Social media provides an opportunity for businesses to engage with their customers in real-time, providing a more personalised experience and building brand loyalty.
User-Generated Content: Social media platforms allow users to generate content for your business, such as reviews, testimonials, and user-generated photos, which can help build trust and credibility.
Disadvantages of Focusing on Social Media Channels:
Lack of Control: Social media platforms have control over your content and can change their algorithms, which can negatively impact your business’s reach and engagement at any given time. Content that you have pre-planned for the week/month may soon fall by the wayside when these algorithms change (they inevitably do).
Limited Customisation: Social media platforms have limitations on design and layout, which can limit a business’s ability to create a unique and memorable brand experience.
Dependence on Third-Party Platforms: Relying solely on social media means you’re dependent on the platform’s availability, reliability, and terms of service. These may not always meet your needs or personal values.
Limited Data Collection: Social media platforms limit the amount of data businesses can collect from their users, which can limit the effectiveness of targeted marketing and personalised experiences.
Competition: Social media is a crowded space, which means businesses may struggle to stand out and gain traction without a significant investment in paid advertising.
“Focusing all your time, energy, effort and money on your social media is like building a house on land that you don’t own.”
Advantages of Focusing on a Website:
Full Control: With a website, businesses have complete control over their content, design, and user experience. Even if you change your business plan, industry or niche, you can easily adjust your own content to suit your new direction.
Customisable Branding: Websites allow businesses to create a unique and memorable brand experience that reflects their personality and values.
Better Data Collection: Websites provide businesses with more comprehensive customer data, which can be used to personalise experiences and improve targeted marketing.
Greater Flexibility: Websites offer more flexibility and room for growth, allowing businesses to add features and functionalities as their needs change. As you need more online space to host your website, you can easily upgrade to cater for the growth of your content needs. Ie. The more video content you have on your website, the most you’ll upgrade and pay for website hosting.
Improved Search Engine Visibility: A website can improve a business’s search engine visibility and drive organic traffic to their site. SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is the ultimate wingman for your website, bringing in more traffic and boosting your business’s online swagger without paying for advertising.
Disadvantages of Focusing on a Website:
Higher Cost: Creating and maintaining a website can be costly, especially for small businesses and start-ups. There is an abundance of DIY website builders and hosting platforms out there, though if you don’t know where to start you often either don’t do anything, or you spend a significant amount of time trying to teach yourself digital marketing when it can often be easier to pay someone else to do it for you.
Slower to Build Momentum: It can take longer to build a following and drive traffic to a website compared to growth and reach on your social media.
Limited Engagement: Websites offer less real-time engagement with customers compared to social media, which can impact customer loyalty. This is also age-specific as many consumers now want ‘real time’ replies, and they don’t want to wait for an email 1-2 days later.
Dependence on Search Engines: A business’s website may be heavily dependent on search engine visibility, which can be impacted by search engine algorithms and changes. Is Google your bff?
Difficulty in Generating User-Generated Content: Generating user-generated content on a website can be more challenging compared to social media, as users are less likely to engage and share content.
Ultimately, your business’s success online depends on your ability to strike a balance between your website and social media presence. So, take the time to understand your customers’ needs and habits, and build a strategy that works best for you.
What have you found has brought more business your way,
your Website or your Social Media or Both? Leave a comment below….
About The Author
Kate Heussler is a businesswoman, Model and Coach. She founded The Model Masterclass to educate and train the next generation of Models entering the fashion industry, equipping them with the business and social skills they need to have a thriving career.
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