You tap on your smart phone screen to open Instagram or Facebook, for the 18th time today.
Greeted once again with the familiar array of marketing efforts, organized in the all-to-familiar grid, or newsfeed format.
Each tile holds yet another vain hope that you, and as many others as possible, will ‘like’ this one, or even better, follow their profile.
For a split-second your heart flutters in momentary hope, that the notification indicator will be generous this time. Will the world award your latest personally selected photo, graphic, or video sacrificial offering with an amount of likes, shares, and follows to appease your necessity for momentary attention?
Whether for business or pleasure, you are led to believe that increased amounts of likes and follows is a good thing for you… …but IS it?
Does it even matter at all?
Likes Don’t Make You Money
Thousands of online ‘social media gurus’ claim to know ways to make millions of dollars using social media.
It’s the gold rush of the new digital era. It should also come as no surprise that these people make money from you paying them to find out how to get more likes on your photos and social media posts. They even ‘recommend’ apps to you that they actually own
We’re constantly led to believe in the value of a like, or a share of your latest post, as if it’s gold dust
This is the mythical legend that surrounds social media, leading us down the yellow brick road, further into a dream land.
You know the one. Like the legend of Benjamin.
The Legend of Benjamin
Benjamin was a lonely nerd, and a goat herder who had absolutely no friends at all. Ben was so broke, he only had a piece of chewing gum and a broken spark plug to his name.
He watched an online guru’s ‘3 step social media marketing course’ for 5 minutes. Shortly after he started an instagram account on his smart phone, for nothing other than fun. Ben got more and more likes and shares on his latest posts, and built a MONSTROUS following.
Finally, after 20 minutes of absolutely no-work-at-all, he made himself an overnight squillionaire.
Now he’s driving around in his new Ferrari, watching the Wells Fargo app as his bank balance goes up to infinity and beyond.
He’s also now found a lot more friends, and is actually dating Caitlyn Jenner.
What a magical success story.
In reality, however, this golden nugget looks more like a giant chunk of horse crap.
Do Likes, Shares and Follows even Matter at all?
The truth is, you could actually have 200,000 likes, and 900 shares on your latest post. You can even get 1,000 clicks to your web site, and not sell one single thing.
This would make you a total of ZERO million dollars.
You can also have the opposite, and have almost no likes, shares, or follows, but be selling a lot, and making money
One of the businesses I’ve run had almost no likes on any of the pictures or articles we posted on facebook. We also hardly ever had very many shares either.
The reason was when people saw the link, they left facebook by following it to the website, and stayed there.
It’s not as if people are going to go back to facebook and remember to like my pictures, after leaving facebook.com and enjoying their time at my site. That business was highly successful, and went from zero to $300,00 per year in just 20 months.
It was a lot of fun. You can read about it in this article.
To break it down, likes, follows, shares, and clicks, are important and useful. They’ll show you which posts are more popular than others (as will google analytics results, or your WordPress App). But they don’t themselves, actually make you a dime.
Genuine followers, subscribers, and most importantly, CUSTOMERS (which people only become once they actually BUY from you) make you money.
Therefore, wasting your time entertaining thousands of people (which is all you might be doing by posting hundreds of pictures a week) for no money, is a complete waste of your time.
Sales Make Money
It should be obvious, shouldn’t it? What makes money? Sales make money. Sales are the only thing that make money. This is true on any platform at all, and will never change.
You can have 60,000 followers on any platform you wish, if none of them are buying, you’re STILL BROKE. If that’s you, it’s time to change your strategy, get some actual sales, and make money from your audience
So how do you get those sales? This is a great question, and VERY EASY to answer.
This is one that I have TONS of advice on, because I absolutely love the subject
Let’s start with why people buy something in the first place, and what leads them to making a purchase
It’s all about how you make them smell the bacon