16 Ways to Promote Your Business Without Using Social Media
Do you want to promote your business without using social media?
I get it, it can be exhausting to show up daily on a platform that truthfully, you don’t want to be on. For many of us, we're looking to spend less time on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok, and more time doing things that light us the fuck up. (Unless you're someone who LOVES social media, then all the power to ya - I personally go through waves, so I find ways to give myself a break).
So what’s the solution?
Well, I believe it's all about finding a strategy that you love that feels like a creative expression of your soul.
For some people, social media works really well. They love having their own personal reality TV show or creating a group community.
For others, it can feel like you have to be someone you're not. It creates this inner disconnect where your soul is telling you to get off, and your head is telling you that you "should" be there because it's what you "should" do to market your business.
If this is you, read on, I've decided to brainstorm 16 other ways that you can promote your business without using social media!
1. Have a Website
One reason why social media is so effective to market your business is that it acts like an interactive business card. When someone stumbles upon your profile, they can creep you and see what you're all about, and get a sense if you can help.
I like to look at it like online dating. Your social media account is your "online dating profile", but instead of looking for a romantic partner, you and your ideal client/customer are looking for a professional relationship.
When they engage with your free content, it's like going on a date with you before committing more time, energy, and money into a longer-term relationship.
So in this case, free content hosted on social media is amazing! However, what's not so amazing, is that you don't own the space that it's hosted on. They could take it away at any moment, or the algorithm could change and stop showing your content to your audience.
Sounds sucky right?
On the other hand, you do have control over your website. You can host your free content, offers, and all the information your ideal client needs to know about your brand and business on a space that you own, that you know isn't going anywhere. Sounds like a much better long-term strategy if you ask me.
Once you have your website set up as your main home base, then all of the other marketing efforts you use can drive "traffic" back to one spot. Essentially simplifying your business and anchoring it to something steady.
Now, I hear you if you're not a "techy person" and don't think you could create or manage your own website. I used to think of myself that way. Wordpress.org used to drive me crazy it was so complicated, but since switching to Kajabi last year, the tech side of my business has gotten WAY easier.
Kajabi includes hosting, a drag and drop builder, blog, digital products and courses, affiliate marketing, podcast hosting, and email marketing all in one.
I'm obsessed and can't shut up about it.
If you want to give it a try, I have a special affiliate link that gives your a FREE 30-day trial instead of the usual 14 days.
Click HERE to start your extended 30-day FREE trial.
2. Blog SEO
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the art of getting your content to rank higher in Google so that more people will discover your message organically while searching the internet.
It uses "keywords", and there's a way to optimize your web pages, and blog posts so they get discovered and rank higher on google.
I'm not going to go into "how to SEO" your website and blog in this article because that's a HUGE topic that I only know the basics of. But I do encourage you to google "SEO" and you'll see the top articles recommended on it. Not only that, but you'll see the power of SEO in action when you do that! 😘
Here's an example of how SEO has helped get my work in front of more people. I got this DM from an Intuitive Copywriter who wanted to cite and link to my post that she found on Google:
3. Email Marketing
Email marketing is not to be confused with spam. Email marketing is a form of direct relationship building; it’s where you build trust and credibility by delivering your content directly into the inboxes of your soulmate audience who have given you permission to engage with them.
In order to grow your email list, it's helpful to offer something of value in exchange like a PDF guide, checklist, cheatsheet, mini-series, mini-course, or free consult, etc. This is called an "opt-in", "freebie" or "lead magnet" in online marketing jargon.
The purpose of this freebie is to 1) Genuinely help your people solve a specific problem they are having. And 2) show people who you truly are so that they're either repelled or magnetized by your energy.
It's my opinion that you should lead with being your weird-ass self so that the people who stick around know that they're getting themselves into, and know how it is you can help.
4. Word of Mouth & Referrals
Word of mouth is the original form of marketing. If people trust you, like you, and got value from your work, then it's natural for them to share it with the people they care about.
For example, I found my osteopath through word of mouth and he was such a bodyworkin' wizard 🧙♂️💆♀️ that helped me heal decades of back pain from a childhood injury that I immediately told everyone I knew about him! Before I knew it, at least seven people I knew were seeing him! Not only that but RAVING about his services to everyone they knew too.
That is the power of word of mouth, the only catch is that you actually have to be good at your work.
(But if you found your way here, I have no doubt that you actually care about your people and are exceptional at what you do, or else you're on your way to mastering your craft and being the best that you can be!)
Word of mouth is actually how many of my clients find me too. It's not uncommon for past clients to refer their biz besties to me. Or share my freebies with their friends if it helped them find more clarity and get unstuck.
For example, this woman sharing my free Find Your Niche Playsheet:
Word of mouth tip: Don't be afraid to directly ask people to share your work too! This can be directly in a conversation with friends, clients, family, or your audience. Or it can be in your copywriting through a call to action.
5. Paid Ads
Paid ads allow you to have a presence on social media, without you actually having to be on the platform yourself. However, it is a pay-to-play strategy, that might not be in alignment for your business right now. Tune in with yourself and feel it out.
If it is the next step for you, then you can promote through Google, display networks, Pinterest, YouTube, and Facebook/Instagram. Within these platforms, you have the ability to promote your blog content, build brand awareness, and even promote specific products, programs, or lead magnets.
I do suggest that you have your message and niche locked in before you start with ads though. But once you have a solid foundation set up in your business, and are ready to amplify your message, then ads are a great investment IMO!
When I started with ads, I started small with only $5/day and quadrupled my email list in less than three months.
I hired the help of my cousin Michael Alexander Hale.
6. Local Events, Meetups, and Groups
This strategy is about getting out there and meeting humans in the flesh! This is a lot easier now that the pandemic restrictions are easing up! (At least here in Vancouver, BC Canada, they are).
Some places you could meet rad people and potential customers/clients are local events, conferences, talks, meetups, and expos. Look what's going on in your city or town and find a community that resonates with what you're all about.
Or create your own! Hosting an in-person event can be a powerful way to promote your business without using social media.
The beauty of meeting people face-to-face is that conversations are full of warmth, love, and vulnerability because we have the ability to see each other's energy right away.
I actually found my first coach this way! Kelsey Grant, from Radical Self-Love, used to host a free monthly Sacred Sisterhood Circle circa 2015-2016 in Vancouver that I found out about through word of mouth. I felt so connected to the community and got so much value from it that I signed up for her 30-day radical self-love program, then did her 3-month self-love program shortly after! It was the starting point for my own healing and personal development journey.
I also was a part of Rising Woman's in-person weekly sisterhood for almost 2 years. Many of the ladies in the circle became my first practicum clients during my coaching certification program, then went on to refer paid clients to me through word of mouth later on!
So this "strategy" definitely works. And the beauty is you don't have to try to be someone you're not. Just genuinely find events or groups to be a part of that brings you joy, and be yourself to connect with like-minded people!
You never know where those relationships will go. The key here is not to push your business on to others, just bring it up naturally if people ask you about what you do for work. And be unattached from needing to "get something" from others, and focus on giving back.
7. Guest Posts
Guest posting is when you post on a blog or website that isn't yours but still aligns with your niche and ideal soulmate client. It can be a great way to promote your business without using social media.
It expands your reach by getting your work in front of someone else's audience.
The way it works is that you write an article for them, and in exchange, they backlink to your site. Which can be helpful for driving traffic and SEO depending on how popular their site is.
To this day I still have people find me through a guest post I did back in 2016! It was for a popular blog called The Ladies Coach and the post was called "5 Ways to Release Blocked Feminine Energy". It also ranked well on Google for SEO and comes up on the first page when you type in the keyword "feminine energy".
8. Pinterest SEO
Pinterest sometimes gets lumped in as "social media" but it's actually a search engine just like Google!
By using an SEO keyword strategy, your content has the potential to be shown to thousands, if not millions of people. And it's a great long-term traffic strategy that can help you eventually promote your business without using social media.
This strategy takes time though. So be intentional about it, and don't expect overnight miracles.
However, I just started consistently using this strategy for the last month, and I'm happy to say I'm seeing results on my Pinterest account!
I know these are baby numbers compared to what's possible, but I'm happy with where this is trending, and intend to keep growing!
And while it's cool to see impressions and engagements, the ultimate goal is to get "outbound clicks" on the pins that link back to your landing pages, freebies, and blog. So you can grow your email list, and nurture those relationships long-term.
The other cool thing about Pinterest is that the content can be shown to people the longer it's been up! Sometimes even gaining more views over months and years. In comparison, Instagram content lasts about 24hrs, and Facebook for only 5hrs.
9. Youtube SEO
Youtube is just like Pinterest and blogging, in that you can use keywords in video titles and descriptions to rank well on search engines.
Create consistent videos related to your niche, offer free value, then promote a landing page for an opt-in landing page, or paid offer. If your content is truly valuable, people will click through to check out your work!
Encourage comments on the video and promote subscriber growth through a custom link in the description.
There's a lot more that goes into optimizing your account to get your videos found. If you're curious to dive into the rabbit hole, I suggest checking out Sunny Lendarduzzi's work.
10. Other people's Facebook Groups
Okay, so I know technically Facebook groups are still social media, but this strategy could work if you don't want to be posting a ton of content on your social media page, but don't mind being on the app to genuinely connect with people.
Here's how it works, find groups where you LOVE the vibe where your soulmate clients and customers might also be hanging out, and be an active participant in discussions! Share your stories, offer your own perspective and engage with other people.
Set the intention to show up as a leader with the energy of being of service, without trying to "get something" in return.
What can happen is that you'll be seen more in the group, and people will naturally creep your profile. Then just make sure that your personal profile is optimized with all your business info and links. Including who you are, who you help, what you do, and where to go to learn more!
⭐Let go of attachment to trying to make sales or promote your work. And just genuinely be an active member helping people out. (I'm gonna ⭐star⭐ this because people can FEEL your energy and intention, so tune into "where" your comments are coming from before actively engaging with others. This "strategy" shouldn't be used only as a means of exposure, you should genuinely love being a part of the community and contributing to it. To the point where you'd be there regardless of if you had a biz or not because you love the space and the participants!).
You can promote your business without using social media by printing flyers for an event or upcoming workshop.
This suggestion may seem a little old school, but if you're in a local community where people get together then try it out!
Just do a little brainstorming, where does your ideal client hang out? Yoga studios? Wellness clinics? Local hip cafes? A lot of places have a dedicated space for you to leave your business cards and/or flyers to help promote local small businesses.
It's easy peasy these days to design and print your own flyers using Canva.
If you have the gift of gab then promote your business with a podcast!
Getting to know other experts and leaders through interviews can make your work more widely known because most episodes are shared with the guest's audience. Then it works out that they are promoting your work for you!
Some podcast hosting platforms you can look into are iTunes, Blubrry, or Libsyn.
If you're going the more technical route, podcasting host software options are Spreaker, Acast, and Soundcloud.
If you're serious about this strategy you'll have to do your own research... it's not my forte at all as a self-identified mega introvert (but I do enjoy being interviewed if you ever feel called to reach out contact me HERE 😘)
13. Public Speaking & Online Summits
You can promote your business without using social media by offering to speak at a local event, or even holding your own!
If you're confident with public speaking, get in touch with event planners. You never know who may need someone to speak on a topic or personal story that will motivate and inspire people.
I know this can work because when I first got started I spoke at an event called Man Talks with Connor Beaton and Mark Groves which gave me quite a bit of local exposure and credibility. I was SO scared, but to this day (several years later) I still have people I meet in person for the first time say they saw my talk and loved it.
Online summits are another option, which is basically like public speaking but done virtually.
You can pitch yourself to Summit organizers, or you can create your own and invite others to speak at it.
Earlier this year I spoke on an online panel focused on feminine energy and intuition in business. There were 15 speakers on the panel and we all promoted the event to our audiences.
Plus we were allowed to share a free gift that invited viewers to join our mailing lists. So this can be a way to promote your business by using the power of collaboration!
14. Industry Peers
Over the years, I've been able to meet some of my best friends by attending entrepreneurial events, professional certification trainings, and group masterminds.
My friends and I want to support each other's success, so we've invited one another to offer workshops in our respective courses and programs. For example, I often teach branding workshops in Brooke's Passion to Action program and have spoken on trusting your soul to guide your Business in Samantha Skelly's Hungry For Happiness Coaching Certification program.
Whenever I have these opportunities, it always introduces me to the most amazing women, many of whom are now my clients or friends! So never underestimate the power again of co-creation and collaboration!
I will say this though, don't try and befriend people just to use their social influence. (Ew 🤮)
Instead, I invite you to be more YOU fully and attend groups and events where you are likely to connect with other amazing people that you have things in common with. Then just trust that the right connections will be made on a personal level, and mutually supportive relationships will grow and evolve over time.
15. Create an Affiliate or Referral Program
I LOVE affiliate marketing! It's when your customers share your products or courses for you and then get a commission.
In fact, for some of the links in this article, I make a small commission. All I have to do is share something I love that helped me! How cool is that?
And guess what, if you have a course or digital product, then you can create your own affiliate marketing program (it's super easy to do with Kajabi). Or if you sell 1:1 packages, then you can offer past clients a referral bonus for sending people your way.
Affiliate marketing is a great way to promote your business without social media because it shares the abundance with real people. I'd way rather pay someone I genuinely have a relationship with than give my marketing money to Facebook or Instagram ads. Ya, feel me?
16. Give Testimonials
What happens when you give a coach or program a testimonial with your name and title, is that they usually share your testimonial (or part of it) with their audience to create trust and social proof.
People who are interested in that coach or program, naturally creep on past students/clients (and sometimes even reach out!).
I'm thrilled to have been found by multiple clients through a video testimonial on one of my mentor's sales pages.
I also think this is a beautiful win-win situation. You get to support them in growing their business by sharing your genuine experience, and in turn, it promotes your business without social media.
So there you have it! 16 ways to promote your business without using social media.
But there's one more thing I want to touch on... you've got to release control over how people find you. Because the honest truth is, it is out of your control.
All you can do is keep consistently showing up in all the ways that feel aligned for YOU. Keep taking inspired actions. Keep following the ideas that light you up and feel exciting. And let go a little and enjoy the journey. Trust that your energy and vibration will activate the right people when they're ready.
And honestly, many of these "strategies" have worked for me, but at the time I wasn't even really trying to follow a "strategy". I was just doing what I loved with an intention of being of service, being myself, and enjoying the process.
From there, beautiful synchronicities and random chance encounters happened. So don't underestimate the power of everything unfolding in divine perfect timing.
I hope this blog was inspiring for you if social media marketing doesn't feel in alignment for you right now.
If you loved it, give it a share! Or save it on Pinterest to come back to it later.
To shining bright,
Amy "There Are So Many Other Ways" Meraki
PS. I also took a workshop with Leonie Dawson called "Marketing Without Social Media" and learned 150 alternative ways to market your biz that don't rely on Facebook or Instagram.
I got a lot of out of it! You can learn more about the Marketing Without Social Media workshop HERE.