With the change to the Facebook Algorithm, and decreased visibility of Facebook Pages in the News Feed, direct sellers need to rethink their use of the popular social network. Sure, your friends and customers are still ON Facebook, but the ways that you can reach them are decidedly different.
So what should you do now? How can you use Facebook to maximize both your time and visibility? Here are some tips.
- Pay if you can. If you’ve got any kind of a budget for Facebook Ads, these are a good way to increase your exposure, and even expand beyond your existing fan base. Since it’s likely your budget is limited, save your spend for times when you have something important to promote, such as a recruiting promotion, contest, or something similar. Even $5-$10/day for a few days can do wonders for your overall reach and exposure.
- Private Groups on Facebook. Groups on Facebook (different from business Pages and personal Profiles) provide notifications of posts using Facebook’s notifications feature, helping you skip the News Feed entirely. There are a number of ways direct sellers can use these advantageously. First, teams of direct sellers can communicate privately in closed Facebook Groups, and these offer a great way to build community and support. Also, when used judiciously, Facebook Groups can be useful for supporting customers. Ask customers (always ask first!) if they would be interested in being part of a special group on Facebook where you post specials and savings (or projects, fashion ideas..whatever content you might offer related to what you sell.) Then, as long as you are friends with that customer, you can add them to your Facebook Group. BE VERY CAREFUL that you don’t post too often in this group, as the notifications can become overwhelming fast, and cause people to opt out of your group. But used judiciously, this can be a great way to stay in touch with customers that want to hear from you.
- Friend your Contacts on Facebook. These days, you’re a lot more likely to see posts from your friends than from Pages you’ve liked. So friend your customers on Facebook. Just keep in mind that you shouldn’t spam the News Feed with lots of business messages. This is against Facebook Terms of Service and it annoys people. Rather, share great ideas that relate to what you have to offer, and gush about how awesome your business is and the benefits you enjoy (without the ask…that’s when it turns into spam.) And be a real person too. Share news about your life. Comment on the photos and posts of your friends. Wish people Happy Birthday. The advantage to friend-ing your business contacts is that they will receive subtle reminders of you and your business whenever they see your posts. And you’re easy to contact in case they need something. But also keep in mind that once you invite business contacts in, you have to behave yourself! Everything you post is a reflection of you, your business, your company, and other consultants in the business.
When you use Facebook well, you can enjoy benefits despite the algorithm change. You may just simply need to learn to use additional features of the network.
How have you adjusted to the Facebook algorithm change? What are you doing differently? Please share your experiences in the comments!