On Facebook we all live and die by the algorithm. If your hip to what's happening the algorithm has been heavily weighted against solopreneurs. Business pages are not having the reach that they once did. If your not running ads you're sinking before you have a chance to swim. Or at least that was the case.
Facebook's latest initiative of building smaller communities is reviving hope.
Groups are popping up everywhere for every topic under the sun. And the Facebook group crawl for clients has expanded beyond the world of Network Marketing into "reputable" businesses like yours and mine. Even still with 2.5 billion people on Facebook how you do compete with all the noise to earn a place in your ideal clients timeline? Better yet, how do you pop up as important in their notifications?
These are serious questions. Everyone knows it takes tons of impressions to turn a new lead into a paying client. So how do you get the face time without hours of one-to-one attention on each new person you add as friend?
If you haven't guessed already, this post is about using your personal profile for business. Gasp!!! All without the need to spam your friends and family. Or get booted off Facebook forever. But I am not going into detail about how to find quality leads to add as friends. That is fodder for another day.
What I will focus on here are the 7 secrets I have found to get you showing up in your friends notifications and timeline. So you can build better relationships and close more sales while letting the algorithm do the work for you.
1. Leave thoughtful comments
I know this one seems like a no brainer. Here me out. When it comes to timeline preference (aka who's getting face time in your potential clients timeline), Facebook doesn't care that you left them a comment. Facebook cares about the amount of interaction they have with you.
Let me restate that you can leave all the comments and hearts you want but if they don't respond to your comment... you have wasted your time. You are not going to be in anyone's timeline. Harsh right?
The Facebook algorithm is like the bouncer only letting in VIPs. So leave comments that are thoughtful and engaging. Comments that provoke a response. And you will gain VIP status.
Some of the best comments are questions. Why? Because if you ask someone where they got their shoes or about the type of makeup they use it's bound to spark a conversation. Everyone loves to show off what they know.
Want to really dive deep here? Search for lesser celebrated or mourned topics using the Facebook search tool. Find friends who recently had an anniversary or graduation and congratulate them. You can even search for a bad day or funeral and send condolences.
9 times out of 10 these topics will have less over all engagement from their other friends. So they are more likely to see your comment and respond. But a note of CAUTION: don't get slimy or sleazy with the last tip its about building relationships and grief is often the best time to show how you really care, NOT close a sale.
2. Ask great questions
On your personal profile. No, I am not expounding upon tip 1.
Here's how this works. Get to know your ideal client. Get inside their head. What questions are they asking themselves? These questions must be relevant to your client but don't necessarily need to be related to what you are selling.
For example... my ideal client is a female entrepreneur who sells or desires to sell high end packages. Thus one of my most successful post was: "Ladies: What is your signature scent? I need one." It received tons of comments.
Comments are Facebook gold.
The more you get the more you will continue to get in the future.
3. Tag them in a post
Get outside of your profile and theirs. Tag them in a post that is relevant to them in a group on a page (the business kind). Tag them in a cat video. It doesn't matter.
The point is to engage with them and get them to engage back somewhere outside of your space and their space. Why? Who else tags people in funny cat videos other than good friends. And Facebook wants good friends to show up in each others timelines.
Y'all everything doesn't need to be complicated.
4. Put them In a list
Are you familiar with segmenting your email list? You have the same capability in Facebook. I'm not going to go into technical details here. (Check this for tech help.) Just like your email list this allows you to send targeted messages to targeted groups of individuals.
You can setup a list for new leads, warm leads, new clients, and repeat clients. How many lists is completely up to you and doesn't impact the important stuff.
The important stuff... Facebook likes lists. Facebook will give you timeline preference for anyone you have on your list. Yes. You show up in their timeline more because they are on your list. It's like crazy math.
The best part is they will never know that they are on your list. Unlike email you don't need permission to send them targeted messages.
5. Message them
Please stop with the "it is so great to meet a new friend" message. If I get another one of those insert scream. No no no!!! I think I have said this before but it needs repeating, we want to engage them in conversation. Not try to pull teeth.
If you lead with this you are going to hit a dead end, fast.
Start by reading over there profile and asking them a relevant question.
"Hey Jane, I saw you recently to a vacation to Mexico City. I am in the process of planning a trip there for next year. Do you have any recommendations or tips on how you kept your kids from getting bored during your week long trip? I would greatly appreciate the help."
This is not a networking event. People will ignore small talk. Even when they know, that you know, that they checked their message. They still won't answer. Do your homework and get creative.
There are so many ways to use messenger to stay connected. You can play soccer or send a voice memo or send funny gifs. Use them. Have fun!!!
6. Be the expert
It is against Facebook's policy to sell your businesses services via your personal profile. You don't have to sell on your personal profile to use these steps successfully. What you must do is establish yourself as an expert.
That means post about things that are relevant to your industry. Share tips and tricks. Tell about your solutions and your opinions. Use every feature Facebook has available to be the go to person for whatever solution you are selling.
No one wants to refer a hobbyist. In the age of information overload people are looking for an expert to tell them what to do. Give them what they want.
7. Build a friendship
Get to know them. People do business with people they know like and trust. So learn about their hobbies, their kids, their job, etc. This is Facebook remember, they are on this platform to make friends, go do it.
In the process of building a friendship take the time to learn their pain points and provide solutions to their problems... even if that solution is not you.
Especially if that solution is not you. If they take action on your advice you know you have a good potential client and they won't have the tarnish of feeling like you are just there to sell them something.
Then when you are the solution to their problem get them off Facebook, out of Messenger and on the phone. Even if that means using Facebook's calling or video chat feature. Phone calls are so, so, so important to closing a sale especially a high ticket one.
That's it... I hope you see that all it takes is a little creativity to turn the algorithm into a success tool and advocate for your business. Now on to you...