Dear Small Biz Owner, Your Facebook Friends May Be Hiding You. Here’s Why

Facebook for small biz owners

You’re passionate about your new biz and you want to tell the world about it. I get that. There’s a right way to share your biz with your Facebook friends so you engage with customers and find new ones. After all, Facebook is called social media, not advertising media. If your small biz facebook posts sound more salesy than social, chances are your friends are hiding you.

Here’s 3 reasons why friends may be hiding you, and what you can do to be more “liked.” 

Reason 1: Your posts sound preachy or you’re slamming political figures, hating on opposing sports teams, and/or sharing intimate details about your recent illness. Do all of the above and you may go from being hidden to being blocked, which is a life sentence in Facebook jail. It’s ok to post about those things if you’re not a business owner and don’t care who reads your posts.  It’s not ok if you don’t want to offend (and possibly lose) customers who might not have the same world view as you. If you want to get more likes share posts that inspire, before you expire.What you can do about it: For unknown reasons (that probably include a definition in a psychology textbook) people post things on Facebook they would never say in a social situation. If you wouldn’t say it to someone you just met at a party, don’t put it on Facebook.

Reason 2: You’re clogging up the news feed with daily posts that scream “buy my stuff, join my team”, or one of my favorites, “you’re crazy if you don’t use my (fill in the blank).”  Social bullying is probably not a good marketing strategy. What you can do about it: Take the Facebook test.  If you’re not getting any likes or comments on your posts, chances are your friends would click an unlike button if that was an option.  Stop spamming and start engaging and connecting with your friends and followers by sharing social posts about your biz, in a fun way.  Take pictures of clients using your product or service, ask a question, share videos and pics of you having fun at biz events or better yet, ask your customers to post pics or a testimonial about your product and tag you.  Social media generates new customers when friends share what they love about brands. Let your customers do the posting for you.

Reason 3: You’re posting “buy my stuff/join my team” on Facebook networking groups in related industries. If it’s an open group, your posts show up in the news feed. Whoomp, there it is. Again. In this case, you are preaching to the choir, asking other people who sell stuff to buy your stuff, before you’ve even been on a first date. The group becomes a feeding frenzy of spam, which is ironically also a meat product (so they say). Notifications from group members can become a big distraction from focusing on your ROI, also known as activities that make you money.What you can do about it: Provide valuable content, like a blog, that offers support and advice to other business owners.  If you’re not a blogger, become a curator of valuable content and share other blogs. Look for small business topics that include marketing, social media, networking and branding. When you help others, you build trust. That’s when people will want to do business with you.Facebook is a valuable tool for building relationships with current customers and finding new ones. Use it to keep up with birthdays, comment on pictures, reconnect with high school friends and say congrats when Susie goes off to college. Your friends (who may also be customers) want to see a picture of your cat hiding in a lamp shade, your family on vacation or an inspiring quote, not an advertisement about your latest offer. Keep the social in social media.

Lynn Bardowski is an award-winning entrepreneur, radio host and best selling author of Success Secrets of a Million Dollar Party Girl.  She speaks to global audiences about entrepreneurship, vision and branding and is a resource for press, media and bloggers.  Like her on Facebook  and follow her on Twitter.

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