10 Things You Should Never Post on Facebook

Facebook is a beautiful tool for the direct seller.  An online portal based entirely on building relationships with people?  Sounds like a direct seller’s dream, doesn’t it?  Since the foundation of what we do as direct sellers is build relationships with others, Facebook offers us opportunities to build stronger relationships which can result in more business.

That said, it’s important to understand what works on Facebook when you’re using it for business, and what you should avoid.  While using it well can bring great benefits for your business, using Facebook poorly can cause people to run in the other direction.  So here are 10 things you should never post on Facebook, when using it for business.

  1. Status updates that spam your friends. Just say no to “join my team” and “buy my stuff” updates sent out to the general universe.  While these are fine in opt-in areas like Groups and Pages, using these as general status updates is bad form.
  2. Events that aren’t really events. Events are great for meeting and party reminders.  But when you use them to invite people to things that don’t apply to them, or for “vote for me” pitches, they become really annoying.  More here: The Use – and Mis-use – of Facebook Events.
  3. Cat Fights. If someone bashes your company publicly online, get over it.  Engaging with someone in an argument online ALWAYS makes you look bad, even if you’re right.  You can always check with your company on whether or not they want you to respond (every response raises the visibility of the negative post), but if you must respond, focus on facts and check emotions at the door.
  4. Pokes.  Facebook has done away with a lot of really useful features.  Isn’t it about time to lose the Poke?  It’s nothing more than a waste of time.  Avoid this like the plague.
  5. Bad Photos. If anyone could remotely take offense to a photo, don’t post it.  Even if you think it’s funny.  As a businessperson, annoying people is never a good idea.  And remember, everything you post reflects on everyone in your company.  Does that photo represent your company well?
  6. Your Birth Year. This one falls more under the heading of safety.  But posting your birth year opens you up to identity theft.  Yes, you need to tell Facebook your birth year to open an account, but you don’t need to display it for all the world to see.   You’re  better off avoiding listing birth date info at all on your profile.  My info box only shows my website links. Learn more about how to adjust this here: Is Your Business Easy to Find On Your Facebook Profile?
  7. Your Logo As Your Profile Picture. I say this all the time…people do business with people.  If you’re leading with your logo, people will not feel a connection to YOU.  The big box stores lead with a logo.  The value you bring is the relationship with a person.  Make sure your picture is front and center, so people can look you in the eye and feel a connection to you.
  8. Strong Political or Religious Opinions. I’m not saying you can’t have them.  Just don’t post them on Facebook if you’re using it for business.  Remember, everything you post can go a lot further than you think, and reflect on every single person in your company. Someone might decide not to do business with a colleague if they disagree with you.  Why do that to someone?  Share your opinions with your real friends, and keep it offline.  Your colleagues and your company will thank you.
  9. Curse Words. Even if your friends don’t care, for others a swear word is cause for immediate un-friending.  Not a good move when using your social networks for business.
  10. Too Much Information. There is nothing worse that people describing their last medical appointment, in detail, on Facebook.  Or any other excruciating experience.  Save this conversation for that phone call with your spouse or best friend.  Spare your online contacts the gory details.

So that’s my list of 10.  What would you add?  Would love to read your thoughts in the comments below!

Image Credit: jaycameron

24 Responses to 10 Things You Should Never Post on Facebook
  1. Suzanne
    March 8, 2013 | 7:35 pm

    Excellent advice!! Whether you are posting to a personal page or a business page, one should always take heed that what they put out there is there forever and represents you.

  2. Sabine Haller
    February 22, 2011 | 7:35 pm

    Hello

    I would like to say that your personal FB page should just be that – personal. Somewhere to connect with your friends (real ones, not Farmville Neighbours) and where you can be you. Then you can post and share what you like without having to worry. If you have a business, make a business page for that, for your games, create a gaming profile. That way you don’t spam your friends/business contacts with game requests and you keep your business life separate from your professional life. You may end up having to post content to several of your profiles/pages, but for the convenience of a private life, I think that’s worth it.
    Now that pages have changed to look and behave like personal profiles, there isn’t even the need to create a new account for your business any more (I think FB has cottoned on to that one), if you play a lot of FB games, it is still worthwhile to open an account for that purpose only and fill it with fake info. You never know what information these games share and with who…and your “real” friends will appreciate it as well, they really don’t need to know that you need one more egg to complete a chicken shed…

  3. Chris
    October 13, 2010 | 7:17 am

    Who cares about offending people with something innocuous? I don’t tailor-make my posts to avoid offending the most delicate of the people on my “friends” list. Doing so seems ridiculous to me. Honestly, if I had a friend on facebook who would be bothered or offended that I was imbibing alcohol or gambling, that’s not someone I need in my life.

    • Ingrid
      May 8, 2014 | 9:30 am

      Of course you can post whatever you like. The point in this article, is that if you post anything you like on your business page, you risk losing clients. My personal page contains the occasional curse word here and there, but I’m much more selective about what I post in my closed groups.

  4. Rhea
    October 7, 2010 | 8:04 am

    Thanks for all the hints, I have built me a group page, http://groups.to/thedreambigteam/ I have focused it around Team National, what are your suggestions for a group page? You have had so much useful info, but I haven’t found anything here on this….

    Thanks
    Rhea

  5. Justin Cofield
    September 28, 2010 | 7:46 pm

    I second what Jay said. I try to be mindful of the things that I ‘like’ and actually went through today and ‘unliked’ several items before I read this post. Sometimes when we get carried away and forget about the consistent brand we want to project of ourselves and our business, it can waste time later… read: 20 minutes wasted today ‘unliking’ certain things I got emotional about initially.

    Thanks Jen!

  6. Phyllis
    September 20, 2010 | 12:37 pm

    Also, for safety measures, don’t post when you are going out of town such as a vacation that will leave your house vacant. Maybe a trip related to your business is ok, if there will be someone at home and its obvious that your house will not be vacant.

  7. Charlene Ragsdale
    September 20, 2010 | 12:32 pm

    I would do away with the Like Option. That is not interaction. If someone cannot type a few words to interact a comment – then what’s the point?

    I hide ALL games, app’s etc and only allow updates from Friends. I am not interested in seeing anyone’s Farmville need.

  8. Marilyn Fisher
    September 16, 2010 | 2:13 pm

    Thank you, Jen!

    I might also add using your friends fb message box for recruiting or sending spam mail is not wise, as I for one start unfriending if they persist.

  9. Rhea
    September 16, 2010 | 8:25 am

    Hi Jennifer,
    As always, another good post! I love reading your emails, lots of great info….we I could afford your program, soon as I get rolling it is one of the first things on my list… You provide so much usable info! I seen some where on your readings how you can use your company’s facebook page to your advantage, but know I can’t find it, can you point me in the right direction? or maybe do an email letter on it. My company has a lot of good info. but I am not sure how to use it to my advantage also….

    Thanks again!
    Rhea

  10. Barb Sibbing
    September 15, 2010 | 3:19 pm

    Thanks Jen for sharing….when I first started with Facebook I did display my birth year but after having people share with me the possible dangers of displaying it I did take it off.

    I also don’t like people bashing with their business deals, business opportunities and I don’t even know these people. If I get this too often from these people I usually “unfriend” them.

    Thanks so much for sharing this valuable information. I’m going to share this!

    CELEBRATE Success!

    Barb Sibbing

  11. Jackie Ulmer
    September 15, 2010 | 2:15 pm

    Jennifer,

    Thanks for pointing out some key things we need to be reminded of over and over. This is critical for branding yourself and creating value and integrity!

    EXPECT Success!

    Jackie Ulmer

  12. Jill Shea
    September 15, 2010 | 12:48 pm

    GREAT article Jen! I just shared on Facebook. I have to stress the importance of using a head shot photo of yourself for your facebook profile. I am surprised when I see someone using a company logo for their personal profile. That’s probably the biggie for me. I like to see who I am talking with online. It really makes a difference when building relationships.

    Love & Success,
    Jill Shea

  13. Shanna Hatfield
    September 15, 2010 | 12:18 pm

    Thanks for another great post that provides simple but essential guidelines for us to follow. I so appreciate it!

  14. Julie Anne Jones
    September 15, 2010 | 12:13 pm

    Great article, Jen. I’m sharing this one, for sure.

    I would also add that I think carefully about what I share regarding my lifestyle choices as well. Anything that could be the least bit offensive to anyone (even if it wouldn’t be to me or most people I know), I leave out. (Like “went out for drinks with my girlfriends” or “just lost a bunch of money at the Blackjack table.”) My goal is to be hyper careful so that there’s no possibility I’ll offend anyone.

  15. Ryan Biddulph
    September 15, 2010 | 12:06 pm

    Hi Jen,

    You hit all the key things which I’d advise not to post, especially the pitching.

    Endless pitching looks desperate. Offering – ie forcing – your opportunity on someone else’s profile is even worse. It’s amateurish; why would I want to buy from an amateur?

    Thanks for sharing your insight.

    Ryan Biddulph

  16. Jay Cusimano
    September 15, 2010 | 11:20 am

    I try to be careful about what I “like” because I have already unfriended one in my MLM business that “likes” an organization very unfriendly to others individual choice in our MLM and in my “Brick N Mortar” business. It is best we keep the HATE off of here for all concerned.

    As for #9, I also remove others comments that contain curse words below my posts. Some people posting are also not very clear on who is the one being cursed in these posts.

  17. Jennifer
    September 15, 2010 | 11:00 am

    I would like to add to #7 in that using your company’s logo is most likely a trademark infringement.

  18. Derek Lee
    September 15, 2010 | 10:29 am

    I’d like to add also posting very opinionated status updates about your favorite sports team can alienate some of your business prospects.

    Example: “OMG, ‘Bama is going to CRUSH everyone this year – eat your heart out you dumb GATORS!! – CHOMP CHOMP”

    If your clients graduated from University of Florida, they may have just defriended you.

    If you want to comment on sports, keep them somewhat tamer and only talk about the positive of your team instead of talking trash about your competitors. (Hey, isn’t the same guideline we should all use for talking about our business?!)

    • Jennifer Fong
      September 15, 2010 | 10:44 am

      Very good point Derek!

      • Robin
        October 2, 2010 | 11:26 am

        I would say also, no jokes! Some people post very offensive jokes and that is always a turn off!

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