How I quit social media for my business (and what happened next)

In October 2021 I decided to take a break from social media in my business. I’d done so before, and was planning be off Instagram for maybe a month or two. That break became indefinite, and I’ve been off social media ever since. While quitting altogether was more spontaneous than I’d expected, I had been preparing my business for it for a while. In this post, I share how I quit social media for my business, how I prepared my business for leaving and what happened next. 

Join the newsletter club for more like this

Sign up with your email address to receive strategies, experiments and tips to create a slow, gentle and profitable business.

What can I make work harder?

A couple of months before I left for good, I decided to start deprioritizing social media in my business. I was just so done with feeling like I had to be ‘on’ all the time. But I also didn’t necessarily want to add a whole bunch of other things to my marketing. What I wanted most was to feel better about marketing my business. I no longer wanted it to feel like a whole other job next to my business.

The first thing I did was ask myself what I could make work harder in my business. Which marketing channel was I already using (and enjoying!) and could I do more with? I quickly landed on my newsletter. I’ve always loved writing my newsletter and enjoy the community I am creating through it. I’m also simply a very wordy person 😅.

The 4 things I did to make my newsletter work harder:

  1. More sign-up forms: not in an obnoxious way, but in an ease-of-use way. Adding a newsletter sign-up form to your homepage (not just to the footer) works much better than only have “newsletter” as a menu-item. Add a newsletter sign-up form to your footer as well if you don’t have one yet and to any pages where it makes sense, including your about-page.
  2. Blog banners. I created very basic but inviting banners that I added to my blog posts (like the one you see in this post). I used to have a button referring to my newsletter only at the bottom of the post, but let’s face it, not everyone gets there. An inviting and clean banner near the top of my blog posts works like a charm.
  3. Email signature. Add a sentence or phrase prompting people to sign up to your newsletter in your email signature. This is such an easy way to remind people of your newsletter and one that we often forget.
  4. Writing more. While going from 1 to 2 newsletters a month meant that I had to work harder too, it’s rarely felt this way. I’d much rather write an additional newsletter than create any number of social media posts. Upping the frequency of my newsletter nurtures the people that are on my list and turns them into true fans of my work.

What do you want to add?

When I was planning to quit social media for business I had no interest in adding something else that I didn’t enjoy. The kind of marketing that I want to invest my time, energy and money in, is the kind of marketing that is not ephemeral, not fleeting, hurried or rushed. The kind that doesn’t require me to be ‘on’ all the time—or even requires me to be ‘on’ at set times.

A few months before I left social media I got into Pinterest as a way of marketing that felt much more aligned. Pinterest doesn’t reward your presence and attention, pins have a long lifetime and pins direct people directly to my website. This final part was something that had been bugging me in particular about using Instagram—how hard it was to get people to where I really wanted them to go, to my website to check out my offers and blog posts (this became much easier shortly after I left Instagram, ironically).

Market your business without social media

I write the occasional new content for my blog (like the post you’re reading right now), but mostly have been uploading old free newsletters to my blog, which are then pinned to Pinterest by Laura who supports me with Pinterest.

Of course you don’t have to add anything new when you quit social media or decrease how much time you spend on it. Once I set up Pinterest, using it in my business became a relatively easy and efficient way to market my business (even more so, of course, now that I have support with it). The main reason why Pinterest fits so well into my marketing is because it fits in really well with my marketing ecosystem: other than the pins themselves, not a scrap of new content is created for it, which feels great.

Point people to my business hub

When I was on social media, my aim was not just to sell. It was also to joyfully connect with people, to share with them, to have conversations and support them in small ways, to keep up with people I enjoyed hearing from.

Yet at the end of the day I run a business and I’d love a portion of the people that engage with my content anywhere to sign up for my newsletter and eventually to go on to buying a course, signing up for a programme or working with me through 1:1 mentoring. Especially once I got clear on where I wanted people to go—my website—I tried harder to use my posts and stories to stimulate followers to sign up for my newsletter or check out my offers.

If you’re planning to decrease your time on social media, or leave altogether, get into the habit of pointing people to your business hub, to where you want them, as much as possible. This doesn’t have to be annoying and you can do this quite naturally by, for instance, adding a link to your website at the bottom of every post; making sure that you link to your website (not a linktree) high up in your social media bio; use the link sticker whenever you’re using Stories to share about your business.

Another idea is to regularly share the different places people can find you in a post, preferably one that uses text in the images rather than just in the post description. A lot of the time it’s not so much the case that people don’t want to check out your newsletter or offer—they simply don’t think about it because they’re not reminded of it.

Asking people to come find me elsewhere

When I quite social media, I quit fairly abruptly. Although I might have said something in a post about taking a break, due to a massive dip in my mental health that break extended longer than planned. By the time I was ready to really start thinking about Instagram again, six months had passed and I had no desire to return to social media. So I checked into my account again and uploaded a carrousel post asking people to come find me off social media:

Now, if you try to find me on Instagram, you won’t. I archived my account about a year ago out of a desire to really cut ties. Archiving it means that, should I want to, I can still go back to it, but I don’t think I will.

How I quit social media for business, then, was by deliberately focusing my time and energy elsewhere. But it also meant following my joy and leaning into my strengths, as I describe in this post on the advice I most frequently give small business owners ready to quit social media for business.

Two years on, marketing my business feels aligned, organic and no longer like a whole different job next to my business. I’m especially enjoying the feeling of not having to be ‘on’ all the time. And my business is fine—thriving indeed—showing that you can run an online small business without social media.

Marketing your business can feel joyful, easeful and aligned, I promise. Discover more about how to achieve this by joining my gentle and effective 4-month group programme Marketing without social media.

If my newsletters and free resources resonate with you, I might just be the right mentor for you. I don’t believe in 10-step-plans, or get rich quick schemes. I do believe that it is possible to create and run a business that fits you and your life: your values and rhythms, your strengths and passions. I strongly believe that you don’t need to do all the things, or be on all the channels to make your business work. 

I’m here to help you feel more supported in your business. I’m here to give you the confidence to run your business from that place of deep inner knowing inside of you, offering my signature blend of mindset shifts and practical steps.

Read more inspiring posts

Join the newsletter club for more like this

Sign up with your email address to receive strategies, experiments and tips to create a slow, gentle and profitable business.

Share this pin on Pinterest 📌