Posterous, a blogging platform, has announced that it will be shutting down its website on April 30, 2013. The site was founded in 2008 and was bought by Twitter just last year. The same creators and minds behind Posterous have launched a new site, called Posthaven, which is intended to replace Posterous. Users have a few options for exporting their information and posts before Posterous is shut down forever.
Posterous’ closure is a good reminder of why it is vitally important that businesses own their own web properties. What does it mean to own a web property? It means having your own website or blog and not relying solely on sites like Facebook or Blogger that could close or change the way they work, having a potentially negative impact on your digital marketing strategy.
The Dangers of Relying on Secondary Properties
When brands rely too heavily on secondary web properties like social media accounts, directory entries and forum posts to carry their online presence, they run the risk of losing a large portion, if not all, of their content and online visibility when a site closes its doors.
Relying on secondary properties also means you have less control over your content. There are only so many ways you can redesign your Facebook page and you can’t count on how long Instagram will be one of the most popular photo sharing sites. When you have your own property you have substantially more control over how long your content stays online and how your brand appears to readers.
What to do Instead
Things like social media and forums are extremely valuable marketing tools and shouldn’t be completely avoided. In fact, they should be used to their fullest potential. However, brands should not focus exclusively on these tools, abandoning their own properties.
A more strategic way to build your online presence may be to base your plan on your own property, using outside platforms as supporting tools. For example, you would never dream of posting entire blog posts to your Facebook page, never posting them to your own blog. Instead, you would post the content to your blog and then promote the post through Facebook. This same method of basing your strategy on your own property and using other sites to bolster your own can be carried over to other parts of your marketing plan.
Thinking of your own site as the foundation of your online marketing efforts will help guide your strategy to be more self-reliant. The more self-reliant your plan is, the less likely it will be to fall victim to a site that is closing down or a social network that has lost its popularity.Secondary web properties can act as support for the properties your business owns.
The Moral of the Story
While Posterous may not be as widely used by businesses as many other content platforms, the moral of the story remains: don’t rely on secondary properties to publish your content and drive your digital marketing strategy. By developing your own web properties, your business’ digital marketing strategy will become more self-reliant, and by the same token, stronger and more successful.