Why No One Cares That Your Business Uses Social Media

I recently had the privilege of speaking with the social media manager for Zumba Fitness.

Zumba does an awesome job with social media, and it all starts with the way they showcase each platform on their website. Take a look:

 
 

It used to be that a business could build an audience on social media by simply placing icons on its website with the call-to-action: “Follow us!” In fact, when we started working with our client Brent’s Deli three years ago, they had amassed 4,000 Facebook page “likes” by sticking the Facebook logo at the bottom of their website.

In 2012, that was totally acceptable because, back then, consumers were intrigued by the idea of businesses using social media. They thought it was cool, forward-thinking and different that businesses and consumers could interact outside of the traditional business-consumer marketplace. And by and large, it was.

Today, most every business is using social media, and as such, consumers no longer view it as cool, forward-thinking or different. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Today’s consumers don’t really care if your business is using social media because — like most every business — you’re probably using it to sell, not to socialize. And no one wants a sales pitch on social media.

If you’re asking people to connect with your business on social media, today’s consumers want to know: What’s in it for me? What value am I getting from liking your Facebook page or following you on Instagram? How will it benefit me one way or another? (The answer is not discounts or coupons — that was so 2012.)

Which brings us back to Zumba: They don’t rely on their reputation as a recognizable brand, presuming that people will follow them on social media just because it’s Zumba. They tell you exactly what you’re going to get from each of their social media accounts, and then they deliver on that promise. That’s precisely why they’ve built a massive social media following — by focusing on content that serves their audience, not themselves.

Now put your business in Zumba’s place. What are you doing to grow and serve your social media audiences? Are you genuinely socializing, or are you really just selling? Why should people care that your business is on social media? What’s in it for them?

Remember: It’s not what your customers can do for you, it’s what you can do for your customers.


Josh Hoffman (better known as Social Media Josh) is an international social media consultant, instructor and speaker, as well as the creator of The Social Media Freelancer. Connect with Josh on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn, and sign up to receive his weekly column.