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Why Facebook Groups are Like Networking Events

facebook social media Aug 07, 2016

Facebook Groups.  Ah, yes.  Those wonderful hubs of activity where you can go to sell your stuff.  Wait a minute!  Backup. Sell? How’s that working for you?

So, let’s explore this a little.  How exactly are Facebook Groups like networking events?

The Networking Event

You spend hours getting together your sales materials.  You order new business cards.  You are confident you have the best thing around and people will drop everything to buy what you have.  You don’t bother practicing your 30-second commercial because you know once they see what you have, it will sell itself.  It is just that good.

You arrive at the event fashionably late.  You grab your sales materials and business cards and bound into the meeting excited to be there  When you arrive people are in groups already talking.  You are not sure which groups to join, but then you really don’t have time for the small talk and have one goal in mind – to sell something and make money.

You finally decide to just go group to group and introduce yourself.  After all, you don’t really know anyone here, but you are sure they will love what you have to sell them because it is the best thing since sliced bread.

You interrupt the first group to loudly introduce yourself shoving sales materials at everyone in the group.  You finish and they are left speechless.  You are sure it is because they just heard the best thing ever come out of your mouth.  You know you just blew them away, so you decide to move onto the next group.

You make your rounds and introductions.  Along the way, you pick up people’s business cards so you can contact them when you get home.  Yes, this was a success.  You head for the door because who has time to socialize, you are way too busy to hang around.  You get to the car, look proudly at the stack of business cards you have and head home.

The next day you follow up with everyone.  You just know there will be some sales.  Everyone was amazed by what you were saying last night.  You start dialing those numbers, talking to folks and leaving messages.  Two weeks later, you still have no sales.  You start to get angry because they said they were interested when you were at the event and now no one seems to be interested.  Why did they lie to you?  Next time, you will press them right there for the sale.  That way you will leave with money in your pocket instead of relying on the phone.

The Facebook Groups

You requested to join a Facebook Group, and they just approved you! You check out the group and see it is a very active group.  Since you are new, you decide to introduce yourself to the group with a post telling everyone about your wonderful product or service.  You include your links – all of them – because you know everyone will want to connect with you.

Hmm.  A few days later only 2 new page likes.  What is wrong with them? There are thousands of people in that group?  Didn’t they see your post? You go back to the group and post again. This time, you state you are posting because you don’t think people saw your post and you want to connect with people.  This time, you go into more detail and how much you can help people.  Maybe if they see that they will come on over to your page.

A few days later you see the results are still dismal.  You decide you need to get people’s attention because you KNOW you can help them!  You go back to the group to see what is going on.  You find there are conversations happening and people are active.  But it seems no one saw your post!

You decide to see if there are posts you can put your link in so people see how much you know and how much you can help them.  You find some, so you post your links there.  You know they will contact you now because it is clear you can help them and now they can’t miss your post. You see there are a few people who you think would want your product or service, so you decide to inbox them.  You know they will not mind. After all, you have the best thing since sliced bread!  Your results are negative.  Why? You think.  You KNOW they need what you have!

The Comparison

I certainly hope you got a little laugh reading the above scenarios. You are sure to have seen them if you have every networked or joined Facebook Groups.  Both scenarios sound ridiculous written down, yet people do these things every day and wonder why social media is not working for them!

In both cases, there is a “me” mentality.  The only goal as the sale.  The assumption is that others will flock to a great product or service for what it is because it is so wonderful it stands on its own.

In both cases, there was no effort to socialize and get to know anything about anyone else.  It was an “all about me” attitude.

The Lesson

I sure hope you are not the person in either of the above scenarios.  If you are, read on.

The first lesson here is that Facebook Groups are very much like networking events.  You will make a much better impression on others when you take the time to get to know people both at events and in groups.  You will soon find that certain people will gravitate to you because they like you!  You should approach each with a serving attitude and see how you can help people.  The more problems you solve for others in the group, the more people will know they can trust you!  Now they know who to buy from when the time is right!

"As you have probably heard, people buy from those they know, like, and trust."
This approach allows them to do that.  Selling to them and pushing your products and services does not.  The know, like and trust factor is vital to making a sale.  If you try skipping this part, you only set yourself up for failure, and I know you don’t want to fail. 

One last point here: people only buy when you can fill a need and they are ready to buy.  Don’t be too pushy because you will push them away.  Have genuine conversations with them to discover where they are in their business and what challenges they face.  Before you know these things, you cannot create the perfect solution for them to buy!