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Friday, June 11, 2010

How to use Facebook and other Social Networking Sites to get Referrals or Leads

Social networking is quickly becoming the new thing that people “can’t” live without. With sites like Myspace, Facebook and twitter (among others), it has relatively easy to connect with family, friends and meet new people.
Part of the reason why these sites are so addictive is because they allow real people to connect with each other in a way that was never possible before these sites came on the scene. One of the things I love about these sites is the ability to connect with people I haven’t seen in ages.
Facebook is one of the social networking sites that’s at the forefront of the social networking scene and is one of my favorites. It currently has over 250 million members and that number is increasing significantly on a daily basis. According to Alexa, Facebook is the second most visit website in the world, second only to Google (of course).

Using Facebook to promote your business

Connecting with the Masses
Because of the viral nature of sites like Facebook, business are using Facebook to get their messages to the masses and promote their products and services.
The best way to get exposure is to go where the people are, and obviously people are all over Facebook.
There are also many internet marketers that have caught on to the potential of social media, who are starting to focus intensely on promoting whatever they are into using these social media sites.

Facebook for the Freebie Trader

One of the things that Freebie Traders are ALWAYS into is finding ways to get more referrals. Facebook (as well as other social networking sites) are prime candidates for places to get referrals. I was browsing around Facebook the other day and came across a status update that excited me. It was a perfect example of someone using Facebook in an effective way to potentially get referrals for their freebie sites. I immediately took a screenshot, and am posting it here (with her permission of course).
The Perfect Example
The Perfect Example
As you can see, all she did was mention how much she got paid using Freebie Sites (IFWs) and that got her friends interested. That is extremely effective marketing. If you are a Facebook user and you have friends on there, they connected with you in order to get your status updates (an also for other reasons). If you got paid from a Freebie Site, why not let them know?
Chances are, if they are in a situation similar to you (i.e. needing/wanting to make a little cash), they will be interested in finding out how you (a friend) did it successfully. At that point, you can easily bring them to a place like CaliStyle101, where there is a system in place to facilitate them trading with you. It’s a win-win situation.

Many Marketers get this wrong

I’ve recently started focusing more on using social networking sites to connect with others with the goal of getting exposure to more people and what I’ve noticed is that many internet marketers get it wrong. They hear that twitter and facebook are great for doing business so they jump on there and start tweeting away about there business on twitter or updating there status on facebook to heavily promote themselves.
The Creepy Salesman
The Creepy Salesman
The problem with this is that people do NOT come to facebook to be sold to. Quite frankly, I believe that people are tired of all the salespeople trying to get them to buy this and buy that. I know that this is true because I’m one of these persons. My wife and I went to the Alltel store yesterday to buy a cell phone and the lady was trying to get us to buy every accessory in the world and I was getting so tired of hearing her speak that I wanted to leave the store.
People come to these sites to CONNECT with other REAL people and that’s what your goal should be, even if you are hoping to get exposure for your business. Be a real person on there. Tweet about your day, what’s going on in your life or some cool things you found online. Every so often, update your status about a positive aspect of your business (like making $900 online). People will sense that you are genuine and want to know more.

Call To Action

Ok, I’m sure you see the value in using Facebook and how it can help your online business. So what’s next? Well, you I would recommend taking the following steps:
  1. Register at Facebook if you haven’t done this already.
  2. Add Friends using the tools provided on your Friends Page. It’s very possible that you have already done this and have a ton of friends. If so, you are already ahead of the game.
  3. Connect with people and have ongoing conversations. Remember, it’s not about the hard sell. Your goal is really to establish connections and relationships that go beyond your online business.
  4. Talk about your successes in your business, but not too much. It’s a part of your life, and the people that are interested enough to connect with you are probably interested to know what’s working for you. There’s no set rule here, but I personally like to do something like 10 non promotional messages for every 1 promotional message.
  5. Watch your business grow. If you do the above 4 steps well, you should expect to see an increase in business. Keep doing them over and over and you will see the power of social networking.

Suggestions for comments

As usual, I would love to hear your comments. Here are some suggestions as to what you can say below:
  • What you thought about this article
  • How using social networking sites have impacted your business
  • Questions you may have about using social networking sites
  • Strategies you’ve implemented that have had a positive effect on your business

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