The filtering scandal, if you think it is one, is a reminder that digital marketers and brands have almost no control when it comes to making a social network your only digital home. Think about it like walking into an airport. You have to do it to travel - but once you’re in there, you pretty much lose all your free will. Delayed? Too bad. Want to go back out and recheck a bag so you don’t lose your liquids? Tough luck. A bottled water costs as much as some budget flights.
Having to use Facebook and other social networks is sort of the same way. Whether it’s Facebook fiddling with an algorithm or Instagram changing how followers will see your posts, marketers are sort of at the mercy of Mark Zuckerberg. Of course, there’s lots of good that comes from social networks. They’re the best way to interact with your audience and, if you have the budget and the will, to get your message out to new consumers.
All roads should lead back home
But the filtering scandal is a good reminder that every post, on any social network, needs to redirect traffic back to your own website. In your own house, you control the message and the way it’s presented. If you’re relying on your social profiles to reach all of your people, your website (and didn’t you spend so much time and money creating one?) becomes almost unnecessary. Then, the next time a network changes even the tiniest thing, you risk being set back and having to hustle to keep up.
Of course, love and embrace your preferred social networks. But remember that it’s always better to be in charge than at the whim of tech trends.
IMAGE CREDIT: T_AND_CAKE