Sorry, Your Audience Isn’t Available Now:

What the 2021 Facebook Outage Taught Us
About Our Over-dependence on Social Media

On October 4, 2021, what is known as the infamous “Facebook Blackout of 2021” occurred. Lives around the world were shaken as people tried to log on to Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and WhatsApp, only to discover that these vital communication platforms were down.

After their attempts to refresh, restart, logout and back in proved futile, they realized that they had to do what the other 3.5 billion active users of these platforms had to do: wait on someone else to connect them to their audience.

Although the outage lasted for only six to seven hours, it caused tremendous disruptions for not only personal users but for businesses small and large.

- Sellers were cut off from their customers
- Advertising came to a halt
- Ads went unclicked and shopping carts remained empty
- Some businesses were shut down, while others lost thousands in sales.

However, something good did come out of the platforms going dark: it prompted us to really consider how dependent we have become on social media platforms to connect to our audiences.

Whether you own your own business, have a personal brand, or rely on social media to connect with a target audience in any way, there is an important lesson to take away from the Facebook Outage of 2021: it is essential to have your own independent platform to communicate with your audience.

Building your own platform enables you to continue communicating with your audience regardless of what happens to social media platforms. This includes ensuring that you do the following:

- Have your own website with up-to-date information
- Offer sales through your own website (in addition to social media)
- Develop your own email database
- Develop your own texting database
- Communicate with your audience regularly outside of social media avenues

Technology glitches are inevitable. The best precaution we can take against them is to position ourselves to be able to communicate with and sell to our target audience independently of social media platforms. When we do, we take back the reins of dependence and empower ourselves for stability and success!

How to build your own platform is only one of the important topics that the Texas Black Expo will feature during our monthly Virtual Lunch & Learns, which will launch in 2022. To receive notifications or receive more information, contact [email protected].