Do you enjoy an emotional lift when the little red notifications icons are glowing for you? Facebook pages have real people behind them, who feel a similar gratitude and appreciation when their notifications glow for the fans who follow and post on their pages.
We can use Facebook to deepen existing trust and relationships with clients and referral partners – businesses within the same locality / niche who serve similar clients. As a web developer, mine are graphic designers, photographers, SEO experts, social media strategists, computer support techs etc. Respecting the boundaries of the offline relationships, I ‘Like’ their Facebook pages and ‘Friend’ them as seems appropriate.
Facebook page owners put a lot of time and effort into attracting new fans. Some of those random fans are never going to be clients or referral sources. We might get a better return by investing some of that energy back into people and businesses that we already know.
I built a Facebook List of these clients and referral partners. With nothing else on the list, there are no distractions. I can go through their recent posts. If one of them is building a business page and I take the time to post or share, do you think they are going to appreciate and think well of me? If I am nice about their photos will they like me more for it?
I wouldn’t rely on Facebook networking without a business page as my ONLY online networking tactic, but it will certainly help. This does not involve ‘like swaps’ or using your personal profile to push your own business. Instead, you are using your personal or business profile to build up other peoples businesses – the ones who help your business the most. Most of them will notice and be grateful to you for that, and the karma will be wonderful when it comes back to you.
Personally, I like to take 10 – 20 minutes each day to check this list and see what I can do to help the people who help my business the most. Please let me know if you think this can work for you.