After having spent 10+ years in several jobs, and having an IT background, starting a business that would help others with the technological needs of their businesses was a no-brainer for me. I never had to worry much about ‘getting’ how technology worked; somehow it has always been easy for me to connect the dots of technology. Therefore, when the time came that I felt I wanted to do something new in my life, I immediately knew the direction it would take and how to start the endeavour.
My learning curve with Websites & Co. has been a smooth one. But I did have the sense that my lack of knowledge about promotion and online marketing could be a bit of a roadblock for me.
Demanding a Like on Facebook
I am a person who attentively watches what is going on in society, and I do understand that the use of technology to some degree depicts societal trends. Even though I have no fear of contact with computer technology, I wouldn’t call myself a digital native. I didn’t grow up with computers around, let alone social networks. When Facebook became popular I watched it with scepticism, and the way it developed didn’t raise much faith in me.
I am the one who promotes conscious business, and often times it made me feel really awkward the way people or businesses demanded a ‘like’ on Facebook. I mean, how sincere is it to ‘demand a like’?
Taking a Stand for Values
With the gradual decline in regard for peoples’ privacy concerns, Facebook became more and more unpopular with me, so much so that I finally decided not to use it for my business. That was a certain decision, but at the same time it made things more complicated for my business and caused struggles.
With the decision having been made, it became clear that I would neither be able to promote my business on this well-known and widely accepted social network channel, nor would I be able to join private groups to find peers or maybe even clients in this way. The latter one I feel sorry for, but taking a stand for values does come with a price sometimes.
Networking is a Dynamic Area
Making this decision also meant that I had to research and learn a lot about alternative ways of promoting what I have to offer. I read (and still do) countless blogs, advice and reviews about content promotion, and it did make me question sometimes whether it was really a good idea to skip Facebook.
I knew it was an experiment – whether an online business could be run at all under such circumstances; and certainly it was a bit of a risk. But deep down inside me, I just knew I did not want to get involved with Facebook. I felt too much resistance inside.
I did and still do invest a lot of time in learning about the different ways content promotion can be done. As a web introvert, I often struggled and felt overwhelmed by the sheer amount of networking options available, but I also understood that I don’t have to follow every path. Some things work for some people, for others they don’t.
There isn’t a cookie-cutter way, because networking is quite a dynamic area. I found it informative to watch how some networking channels have developed over time, and how what they do differently helps them to either evolve or become meaningless. I have gotten the impression that Facebook is now being seen as the senior of the networking channels. It has set a trend, even a standard for some time, but it’s certainly not the most innovative channel; and is definitely not the only option nowadays.
Besides that, there are also voices now that speak out why they don’t use Social Media anymore. Here’s Alexandra Franzen’s take on whether it is possible to run a business without social media.