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20 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Use Social Media

Social media marketing for business is new and not for everyone. It is being implemented by the innovators and the early adopters that love to lead the pack. It is also a very different way of communicating your brands message and with that comes challenges, opportunities20 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Use Social Media and threats.

There is also the joy of learning new ways of marketing, with that there is often the accompanying pain of mistakes that comes along for the ride.

So maybe you should not use social media because it is not for you just yet!

Here are 20 reasons not to use social media

  1. You are a traditionalist and value the “good old days”
  2. You don’t want to be found
  3. You don’t want to be heard
  4. You have shares in the “Yellow Pages”
  5. You like spending thousands on media you can’t measure
  6. You highly value your perceived privacy
  7. You don’t want to hear what your customers are saying
  8. You don’t want any new customers as you are already too busy
  9. You’re afraid people might say nasty things about you
  10. You want to give your competition a head start
  11. It’s a waste of your valuable time
  12. Because its only a fad and it will go away
  13. I like to keep things simple and it’s all a bit complex with Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn and all that stuff
  14. I am a real person and I don’t believe in those fake online social networks
  15. Social media sites are largely populated with people who have nothing better to do with their time
  16. Social media is at an evolutionary stage I will wait until it is more mature
  17. I don’t want to be overexposed
  18. If I subscribe or join I will be spammed
  19. There is something better around the corner, I can afford to wait
  20. Social media will reduce real face to face opportunities because I would waste my time online

Are there any other reasons you shouldn’t use social media?

Image by Cathy G

Jeffbullas's Blog


  • Ha! What a great twist. Social Marketing does take a certain kind of mind-set and it takes blogs such as this one,to help people see the contrast between the “old” ways of marketing and how the new ways of marketing compliments a business marketing strategy.

    The other part to this is, do you want to be left in the dust? Get on board now!

  • Great article, and very clever! I hear these same reasons why people don’t want to get into social media all the time. If you don’t get in you will be totally “left in the dust”, like Ana said. Social media is definitely here to stay!

  • Like the take on the way that you have put this together…

    I want to be found
    I want to be heard That is why I use Social media Thanks for the Post RICH :0)

  • As an internal auditor, i always look into risks (threats)associated to processes, procedures, strategies and ventures. We face risks for whatever we do or plan to do. However, we also need to be careful of the risks of not doing it.

  • I like it, too. Nice formulas you got there. I think this list can be put the other way round as well – it would work with the title “20 reasons why you should use social media” 😉

    take care and greetings from Germany,

  • This is what my ex-boss said… “Internet is bullshit”…

    But then I saw him on Facebook… I think u guys know now why he’s my EX-boss

    Chetz Yusof

  • Jeff, do you seriously mean that absolutely everyone, with no exception should use social media? Or that those who don’t are just plain stupid?

    I don’t buy it. For some companies it doesn’t make sense at all, yet they still have a growing business. It’s too bad you didn’t actually treat this as something serious, since it’s a good question.

    And then there’s Apple who, as a company, isn’t using social media at all. What would happen if you retitled that list “Here are 20 reasons Apple doesn’t use social media.”

  • We all need social media, without it. Plus it is the easiest and inexpensive way to spread the word about your own business. Internet is the best source right now. I don’t believe there any bad reasons not to use it.

  • Love it! Gonna tweet it up!

  • This is great! I would also like to add: “You add the word ‘the’ when referring to internet tools. As in, ‘The Facebook’, ‘The Twitter’, ‘The Email’.”
    Thanks for the chuckle!

  • lisathefreesoul

    21.once you use social media like Facebook, it’s very difficult to close the account, not only because your information will still be kept, also your friends will look for you there and wonder what happened, why should you cut off online connection with them.

  • Heard this exact quote from a client: “I don’t believe any of our customers use social media.”

    I would put this at #1, since all the other reasons assume that social media a) exists and b) people use it. This reason may begrudgingly accept its existence, but certainly questions its relevance.

    FYI – I am in the process of proving him wrong since to date, I have found 45 blogs that cover his niche industry…

  • Jeff,

    Excellent use or ironic humor to drive home the reality, Jeff. These are all profound reasons to look seriously at social media as part of the marketing pie, or cake as Gary Vaynerchuk has suggested. That said, it isn’t for every company, but it is for most B2C and B2B companies that I can think of. Also, for the doubter above, I would cite the following article which details HOW Apple is using social media: http://www.mndaily.com/2010/09/08/ping-apple-dives-social-media


  • You gotta love reverse psychology! Great post Jeff.

  • Great post! Thank you!

    I’ve heard all of those excuses before. The trick, at least for someone in my position as both an internet marketing strategist and project manager, is to be able to discern the client who is FOREVER a social media no-go and the one who might just flip…with a little care and effort.

    It’s up to me to try a few things to help the resistor understand that:

    a. Potential customers ARE taking part in the conversation, thus show him concrete examples of said clientele and their representation on platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, etc

    b. Show him that time management IS possible, if handled intelligently and from as early in their social media adoption process as possible. We work together to find an app or two (Tweetdeck, Hootsuite, Google Alerts etc) that fit his personality and personal/business goals the best and provide clear training in their use. This at the very least, or recommend more robust brand monitoring tools such as Trackur to provide the most in-depth info in the most centralized location.

    c. Show him concrete examples of similar companies working social media to their disctinct advantage, particularly if they’ve been at it for more than 2 years.

    d. (This one is fun!) Show him conversations about HIS brand name, product, real name, etc and watch him freak when he sees all of the unmonitored chatter, positive or negative. That one usually gets clients pretty fired up. When they see they no longer have hold of the reins, the turnaround is usually immediate.

    e. Walk them carefully through the myriad ways they really can protect their privacy and help them see that no matter how ‘private’ they are, the chatter remains (similar to d). There are ways to have a conversation in social media without giving away the farm.

    There’s so much more we can do to help them along! But still…many do keep their hooves firmly planted and continue to bray on and on about the ‘evils’ of social media. At least I know I tried 🙂

  • You also shouldn’t use social media if you’re hung up on needing specific ROI metrics and don’t understand extending the lifetime value of your customers or the value of theri word of mouth marketing for your company.

  • Jonathan

    Great observations Jeff – so true and yet so sad!

  • Jonathan

    Great observations Jeff – so true and yet so sad!

  • Social media is a powerful tool for educators and I’d argue some very similar compelling reasons that you outlined for educators to not use social media:D (“I don’t enjoy learning about new resources… I couldn’t possibly learn anything else from other colleagues I’ve never met, I don’t have time to learn new things, etc. I wouldn’t want to try innovative ways to help students excel and excite them about learning.” Thanks for the great humor… I enjoyed this post and would love to adapt it for educators. 

  • Everyone can have a platform and a voice, yet so many don’t see the advantages to that.  They don’t see the posibilities and the good they can do. 

    You threw me off with the title.. I was thinking.. huh? He’s not really tweeting about social media being bad.. on twitter ?!  Pleasant surprise with a great post!! 🙂

  • Twirlea

    don’t give a damn

  • Gladmag

    We early adapters are so used to the perils of pioneering its all old hat by now…its promote or die, I say, and thanks to our spending hard earned USD on young digital search engine optimizing whippersnappers in 2007, we are surviving this economic holocaust.. Mistakes made from experimenting are preferable to freezing in place from fear.

    The problem always is WHICH digital marketing whippersnapper/social media whiz/ to work with? We made lots of expensive mistakes in th early days of web marketing and today is no exception. How about providing Business Social Media for for Beginners?

    • I am just finishing an ebook on blogging and social media. The next book “will be” on Social Media marketing for business.

  • Anon

    http://www.tnsdigitallife.com/view/social-brands Look at the Red bits in Europe then tell me you want to spend cash chasing that small a percentage

  • You already know everyone you need to know, you already know everything you need to know, you already do everything you need to do.

  • Andrew Healey

    Hi Jeff, here’s one: “I’m not interested in sharing useful information with my folllower. I just want to sell to them!”

    • Thanks Andrew, I think we can make it “21 Reasons” 🙂

    • Thanks Andrew, I think we can make it “21 Reasons” 🙂

  • Andrew Healey

    Hi Jeff, here’s one: “I’m not interested in sharing useful information with my folllower. I just want to sell to them!”

  • For some people there are many reasons not to use it, and for some others many reasons to use it. No issue with that as long as everyone is well informed about the role social media may have in their lives.

  • thetecnica

    Cool post, first of all.

    all the points above sound as taunts addressed to people reluctant to social media for no reason.

    Being a social media blog, we believe in social media and the potential it holds.

    PS. this point “You have shares in the “Yellow Pages” Hilarious 😀

  • Great list, #4 is my favorite. That would be like a David Letterman TOP 10 List…

  • What’s funny about this is that 2 years after this was written, these are still problems that continue in this field. There is something that I’d like to add here and that is, expecting the ROI to be exactly the same as it is with traditional media (or what it’s perceived to be). I find that people don’t necessarily invest the time or resources in building online communities simply because they have to be patient in building them. Not everything is immediate, but when the responses/ interactions come, they come in full.

  • David Lawyer

    #21 should be – If you don’t want top give your business a chance at being successful.

  • SellerActive

    Love the Reverse Psychology!

  • These are good and I got a great chuckle in the bargain! Toughest part can be convincing those who hire you to instigate change to let you instigate the change they hired you to instigate!

  • Holly McIlwain

    Big Smile, Y’all! Wondering if you and your followers would help me and based on experience, rank, in order of relevance, each of the social media outlets based on effectiveness for business.

  • Very well written article, had to smile at some of the reasons, but in the end some made good sense, but most of them are just another way of why you should really use social media correctly!.

  • David Parada

    I have to confess number nine would be true for those who have thin skin. If an individual is afraid of “spam” there’s always the delete button. It works.

    A couple of other notes: number 12 seems to be the excuse a lot of baby boomers seem to use when they don’t know how to do something online.

    An idea for a twenty-first excuse: there’s a lot of fraud on these social media sites.

  • Skaled

    ha… way to pull me in with that headline. Say whaaaat??? I’ll add… Do not use social media if you are intimidated by the infinite reach that is possible through engaging content and customer connections.

  • What we call social media today is business media disguised as social. There was a very short window where the premises of modern marketing where challenged but that now is so 1999

    Cluetrain Manifesto

    No sooner as the Cluetrain Manifesto, Tom Peters chimed in with his Brand You and all the stuff we ever wanted to change about marketing became the new marketing – social media as marketing.

    I still rather be an unpackaged moron than a well-packaged marketer, and it is as if the only thing today is about what you can sell, how you can do that more socially and how that equates with your reputation.

    There are plenty of people who don’t accept that notion of making a living, because marketing requires them for marketing to make a living. There are more of us who are being marketed to, than there are of “them” who market from the Bible of Social Media Marketing.

    “Them” have their space now on the Internet, but all us who are no name “individuals” still want is our little space, one that either works for us or where we learn from our own mistakes, because they are ours to mistake, not someone else’s to remedy or sell anew.

    20 reasons not to be online?
    I don’t need a reason to be online?
    I already am.

    My dear friend we are not alone. It is time to a blow a second wind into that once relevant manifesto, and beyond that enjoy being ourselves, so true, to thine own self be true.


  • Ken James

    What a cynical article. And a colossal waste of time.