- Jenny Stallard
Do I really have to be on social media if I'm self-employed?
Updated: Nov 28, 2022
Social Media is kind of avoidable these days. And for small business owners, it feels like we need to be on ALL the social media, ALL the time.
It's easy to get lost in the noise and chaos of social media, of the hurricane of other people's posts, information and videos. A lot of clients and people who come to me for chats about coaching mention social media, and the feeling they 'should' be on it. Or that they are on it and not sure whether to do more. It's very personal and I would never tell anyone they HAD to be on social media. But if it's niggling away at you that you could be reaching more clients, it's worth thinking about.
The question is, do you really need to be on social media if you're self-employed?
Well, personally, I have found that it's brought me new clients, it has helped me secure press coverage for myself as a coach and expert in my niche, I've made new friends, and I've learned new skills.
Social media helps me connect with people as a human, through video, and that for me is invaluable as part of what I 'sell' is working with me as a coach. It's also a fun outlet for the silly side of me, making reels or cheesy captions.
I also feel that being on social media gives you a level of credibility - it can showcase your skills and work, as well as that you care about your business because you're curating its online presence.
If you're hovering over the post button, wondering whether to tweet or navigating whether to dance in a reel, here are five things to consider before you go for it:
1: Quality over quantity. This applies to platforms and posting. Think about where your clients are, and which platform you enjoy using and see if there is a cross-over.
2: Make a content plan. It might change with the news agenda or things that come to mind, but generally, you want to have an idea of what you're planning to post. That will help you stay true to the ideas you have, that are right for your business and niche.
3: Look at what others are doing. The balance with the scroll on everyone else's profiles is that they will also potentially inspire you. You can use social media to be entertained and informed, and you might start to find your niche and USP by watching what other people do.
4: Research and test things out before posting. Let's take Reels on Instagram as an example. Many people say they feel they should make them, but don't. Try them out - you don't need to leave them on your profile! You could download an app to try editing video, like InShot, before heading to reels straight away. Take short videos when you're out and about to get used to taking video (eg the table with your coffee, you walking along).
This can also include training - there are lots of great courses and groups to join with social media experts out there.
5: Check your insights. If you are going to use social media, remember to see how it's working for you. If you load that Reel, see how it performs, who saves it and so on. That's the amazing thing about social media platforms - you can see each and every person who sees or reads your content.