Why do so many business owners fear social media?

After being in business for close to 6 months now, this is probably the most puzzling question we ask ourselves at SocialMe. Clearly, without this conundrum, we wouldn’t have a successful business. However, there are certain elements to social media that will forever make it a feared marketing item with a variety of businesses.

It’s natural to fear the unknown. It’s even more natural to resist change. But, social media has undeniably solidified itself as the most important communication channel, eCommerce marketplace, and news dissemination platform available today. There’s no ignoring Facebook anymore. With 80% of consumers answering they’re more inclined to shop at a store if they locate a credible, authentic Facebook page, it’s time to stop asking why people ignore it, and time to start asking why they fear it.

We have three theories on why so many people want, yet fear social media.

1. Lack of writing and grammar skills

If you think back to Middle School and High School, probably close to 40% of your class struggled with writing. It’s a common skill set many are unable to learn and develop throughout their lifetime. Spelling and grammar are scary to a lot of people. English is a complex language, and our spelling system doesn’t always make sense. 

About 1 in 10 Americans are dyslexic and shy away from social media.  An even greater amount fear they will be mocked, made fun of, or ruin their business’ legitimacy with misspellings and poor grammar. This is all incredibly true. Businesses need to look smart, professional, and on top of their game. The best way to come across as professional is by showcasing well-versed, succinct social media posts that demonstrate a mastery understanding of the English language.

2. Inability to identify a business brand

Social media forces businesses to identify their central brand and build around it. Businesses that fail to do so end up with 30 Facebook page likes and zero online community engagement. With all of the competition on social media today, businesses have to identify a brand, market the brand, and analyze the consumer reception to the brand. They then need to alter it as needed for drawing in more interested consumers.

This is very hard for many businesses. It forces them to really peel away the layers and pick a core platform for their services and products. Most businesses that have been around for a while 1) don’t want to do this and 2) don’t think they need to. They therefore shy away from social media, and continue with the “same ole” approach.

3. Too technologically challenged to understand social media

This may sound harsh, but it’s true, and we all know a handful of people, typically 50 years of age and older, who just can’t seem to grasp the Digital Era. Now, we are not blaming these business owners whatsoever. Imagine owning a restaurant for six decades and trying to understand Facebook? We probably couldn’t either!

But the truth of the matter is these people just don’t get the Internet, and they’re probably never going to. After six successful decades in business, why fix it if it’s not broken?

Sadly, these establishments will fade into the past if they don’t set aside their unwillingness to adapt. In the meantime, their technological challenges prevent them from even learning what “Tweeter” could do for them.

These are just our theories, and they could be completely wrong. They could, however, be correct, and posit a great start for including the small businesses of our country in the Inbound Marketing age. Here at SocialMe, we want to help them.