Welcome to Social Slowdown, the podcast for entrepreneurs and micro-businesses looking for sustainable marketing strategies without relying on social media. I’m Meg Casebolt, your host, and founder of Love At First Search. Before we dive into the episodes, I wanted to give you an idea of what to expect from this podcast.

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You’re listening to Social Slowdown, a podcast for entrepreneurs and micro-businesses looking for sustainable marketing strategies without being dependent on social media. Social media is a double-edged sword. It’s a wonderful way to stay connected. But it also can feel like an addictive obligation. And it’s even more complex for businesses, your audience might be right there, but you’ve got to fight with algorithms to maybe be seen by them. So whether you want to abandon social media altogether, or you just want to take a month off, it’s possible to have a thriving business without being dependent on social media. This podcast is all about finding creative, sustainable ways to engage with your audience without needing to lip-sync, send cold DMS, run ads or be available 24/7. Let’s get started. Hello, everyone, welcome to the Social Slowdown podcast and I am your host, Meg Casebolt. I want to take a few minutes before we kick off the podcast to explain the intention of this show and give you an idea of what you can expect. So in case we haven’t met, I am Meg Casebolt. I am the founder of the SEO agency Love At First Search. I have been working in marketing since 2006, and I started my online business in 2013. So I’ve had a front-row seat in how digital marketing has changed over the past couple decades. Oh man, that makes me sound old. I’ve seen the rise of Instagram and all of its iterations from simple photo-sharing into stories and lives and IGTV and Reels. And I’ve seen the expansion of Facebook as business pages decrease in views while groups and ads rise. And I’ve seen the total annihilation of platforms like Vine, MySpace, Periscope, and Blab. And the cool/terrifying part of being in this industry is that I’ve actually seen these platforms shift from fun places to share cat pictures to spaces that foster political conflict, body dysmorphia, and disinformation campaigns. Many of my non-business-owning friends have left social media channels for good and I applaud them and I even envy them a little bit because I feel tethered to these tools as a part of the infrastructure of running an online business. I use social media to post about what my agency offers. I connect with potential students and clients and I keep in touch with referral sources. I’m also regularly tagged in posts where people are asking a question, and my network knows me as a subject matter expert who can solve a problem. So even though sometimes I wish I could escape social media, it’s really important for my business to maintain our network and stay top of mind with our prospects. It can also be really freaking exhausting. Thankfully, social media isn’t my agency’s only marketing strategy. I will talk more about what we do in another episode. But I’m here because I also talked to a lot of solopreneurs, and entrepreneurs and freelancers and micro-businesses, and small business owners who feel trapped on social media, and they resent it, but they don’t know how to break their reliance on these platforms. Often they come to me because they’re thinking about expanding their digital marketing to include SEO. Quick definition: for those of you who don’t know, all the marketing acronyms, SEO stands for search engine optimization, which is just a fancy way of saying, “making your website attractive to Google so your business will show up in the listings when people search for you.” The idea of these people coming to me is that if they have people finding them on Google and hiring them from their website, they don’t need to spend as much time on social media. I do end up working with many of these entrepreneurs, but SEO isn’t a good fit for every type of business, every business model, and every marketing strategy. SEO is a long-term plan that requires a clear outcome. It requires people to know that they want what you have, and it can take a lot of time or resources invested upfront. And so when I talk to people who are looking to diversify off of social media but aren’t a good fit for my services, I hate that feeling of just saying “nope, sorry we’re closed.” So I often spend those discovery calls brainstorming with these entrepreneurs about alternative ways to market without social media. I’ll ask them, “Have you tried email marketing, or summits or joint venture webinars or being a guest on podcasts or partnering with other service providers or public relations, or just asking people to hire you?” Based on that conversation, I often send that person a list of my friends who offer or teach that marketing strategy. As you can imagine, these conversations are valuable, but also very time and energy-intensive. And while I love sending business to my colleagues, I don’t profit from those leads. So I wanted to create a space where I can introduce you, my dear listener, to these amazing marketers who teach and practice marketing without social media or not entirely dependent on social media, and also give you real insights into how their businesses actually run. There will be no rags to riches, “get rich quick” options here. I’ll do my best to share a transparent look at how long these different marketing strategies take, what investments they require in time and money and energy. We’ll talk about how big your audience has to be successful. And most of your conversion rate expectations. This podcast is not antisocial. You may use these strategies to fully remove yourself from social media. And if that’s your goal, awesome, I’m proud of you. But for most of us, we may not want or need to fully leave social media, we just want to be less dependent on it. We want it to be a fun place to engage – not a pressure cooker where we feel like we need to get our next sale. So on this podcast, we’ll talk about how to set up your marketing in a way that works for you, your time limitations, your budget, your personality, and the way your brain works. If you love to be goofy on Instagram Reels, by all means, go on with it. But if you’re an introvert who doesn’t want to show up on video, then we can help you find an alternative. There is no one size fits all business or marketing strategy. And as Wesley in The Princess Bride says, “Anyone who tells you otherwise is trying to sell you something.” So let’s use this podcast to explore online business marketing together with a spirit of exploration and curiosity. Thank you so much for listening to the Social Slowdown podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe or come on over to socialslowdown.com and sign up for our email list so you never miss an episode. We’d also love if you could write a review to help other small business owners find the show. You can head over to socialslowdown.com/review or grab that link in our show notes for easy access. We’ll be back soon with more tips to help you market your business without being beholden to social media. Talk to you then!

Please forgive any typos or errors, as this transcript was automatically recorded by otter.ai