Social Media is one of, if not the, most revolutionary innovations of the last generation. In its early days, no-one would have dreamed that it would be big business in addition to a way for people to connect. But despite the revenue the big social platforms generate, businesses that rely solely on them for their marketing are missing big opportunities; according to some studies, using social as their only marketing channel may be turning away up to 30% of potential business. Here are some reasons why businesses need to branch out.

Social Media Doesn’t Build Your Audience

Let’s start simple. If someone is following you on social media, they probably are already aware of you and have done business with you. While it’s great to keep loyal customers in the loop about new products and promotions, this won’t do much to grow your client base. Marketers still need to invest in traditional media to build awareness.

Social Media Isn’t Designed to Conduct Business

While social media interfaces are always updating and improving, they’re not built to handle e-commerce securely and conveniently. Think about it, almost any post with a call to action that you see on social redirects to another site for customers to make their purchase. If you’re asking your audience to call, stop by, or direct message you to place an order, you’re creating a harmful barrier to sales.

Social Media Doesn’t Drive SEO

One of the biggest opportunities you miss with a social-only marketing strategy is search engine optimization (SEO). When a potential customer plugs a keyword relevant to your industry into one of the major search sites, the biggest driver of rankings is a well-maintained website with fresh content and properly tagged sub-pages. Social media pages generally don’t help drive these rankings, meaning you’re handing lots of clients over to competitors.

Social Media Owns the Content You Post

This may not impact your business greatly, but every social media platform has extensive terms of use. Photos and videos that you post may become the platform’s property in some circumstances. And they all reserve the right to suspend or close your account if terms are broken, or if reports of inappropriate activity are made. This is a huge risk if it’s your only form of advertising!

A business card with a Facebook page instead of a proper URL just looks amateurish. Invest some time and money on a website and traditional media and use social as an extension of your marketing. Not as its home base.