How to Keep Marketing Your Business During a Facebook Outage (Or Other Social Media Downtime) - Black Enterprise
Black Enterprise magazine Fall 2019 issue

It was recently reported that a staggering 68% of Americans use Facebook. Another interesting statistic is that 66% of monthly Facebook users use the social media platform daily. With an increasing number of small business owners searching for an alternative and cost-effective solution to promote their businesses, it’s no wonder why the social media giant continues to dominate the social media landscape. But what happens when there’s a Facebook outage (or other social media downtime) that prevents valuable users from accessing the platform, ultimately hindering them from stumbling upon your sponsored business posts?

Let’s dive into the numbers. It was reported that the product placement market expanded 13.7% to $8.78 billion in 2017 and is swelling toward a ninth consecutive year of double-digit growth. There are online TV streaming services, live streaming solutions (outside of Facebook Live), and old-fashioned traditional television programs viewed (and streamed) by millions on a daily basis. In the US, there are an estimated 119.9 million TV households in the TV season 2018-19. In 2017 alone, an average U.S. consumer spent nearly 4 hours daily watching TV. Simply put, there is a still massive dynamism with marketing through TV placements as opposed to essentially marketing through social media platforms and channels.

Using TV Media Placements To Expand Your Brand’s Digital Footprint

After launching my company’s Vets 22 mobile application, I secured features on the NFL Network and Forbes Sports Money. To look at the NFL Network in particular, the powerful name behind the Good Morning Football marquee coupled with the dedicated viewership of the NFL Network’s signature morning broadcast increased downloads, partnership opportunities, and expanded my company’s digital footprint. Notice that I didn’t mention that the video was then shared on social media and went viral. As you can imagine there was no need for social media exposure. With a daily viewership of 109,344, the exposure of the live broadcast (and re-syndication) helped our Vets 22 mobile application not only reached the masses, but it also led to future brand and media opportunities. Furthermore, it’s nothing like using the social proof of being featured on a major network television broadcast to properly position our app as an authority in the industry.

Local Placements Are a Viable (and Cost-Effective) Solution

Facebook outage

Think of your local morning news broadcast. They have tens of thousands of daily viewers eager to hear the news of the day. Have you ever noticed the interviews that are featured with business owners, promoting their products or services on TV during interviews? The business owner featured may have possibly paid for placement, however, in most cases, the business owner pitched the TV show through a producer who is involved in the scheduling of business interviews on the daily broadcast. Another way to earn placement is to tie your business to a trending news story. Television producers are always searching for experts who can provide critical commentary on trending stories. For instance, if I were looking to promote my digital marketing company, I would pitch a producer with this story (the one your reading) and a few tips for business owners, struggling to gain traction with their target market during the widespread Facebook outage. Or I would simply turn this article into a long-form ebook and offer it for free on the live Television broadcast (providing value to the station and capturing emails for my business). I could also interview local entrepreneurs who lost business through the outage and pitch the feature as a local economic issue to the television producer. I could then utilize the stories of other local business owners to impact the story narrative and to add authority to the subject.

In Conclusion…

I can give other examples of how to strategically use TV placements to grow your brand during social media outages, but you get the point. Simply put, leverage TV media placements to get your business in front of your local target market, it’s a win-win for your business and the local news organization. Television producers publicly list their contact information on their company websites. They also have active LinkedIn profiles that are easily accessible. It may be time to discover an alternative (and cost-effective) way to reach your target market.