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While perusing Facebook groups online, I often see someone post some variation of this question: “Instead of followers, how do I get more leads?” While it is easy to give an answer to this question” (Hint…answer = build relationships). The WHY and the HOW of building relationships online can be tough for female business owners, especially because many of us work from home. We don’t have the opportunity to meet people in person and “charm” them with our amazing personalities. We have to look for ways to interact and connect with others on the interwebs.
There are two general ways you can attempt to get leads with social media marketing:
- Drop your link all over the place in the hopes that what you’re offering is something someone needs.
- Use attraction marketing techniques; show what value you offer through authentic interactions with those who can benefit from the solution you provide.
It is one of my business goals to help teach other female entrepreneurs that the second approach above is the only productive way to gain new leads online. If you are trying the first approach, let me know how that’s going for you. Haha! Often, link dropping comes off as spammy and gives the opposite impression most people are hoping to make. I give everyone the benefit of the doubt. Sometimes, if a person is brand new to sharing their business, they haven’t yet learned the most advantageous way to promote themselves.
I often see scenarios in Facebook groups where someone posts a question and you see both approaches I discussed above. People either immediately drop their link and say “That’s my business! I can help you.” Or someone actually takes the time to compose a thoughtful answer and provide value to the answer-seeker without expecting anything in return.
Facebook groups can be a GREAT place for crowdsourcing and getting answers to business questions. It’s a rockstar place to converse and “meet” women who are also working hard to create something of their own.
But. You know what is NOT great??….Seeing all the links that are simply dropped in response to someone’s question. Just because your business may help them answer a question, or you have the resources they may be looking for, doesn’t invite you to just throw your link out there.
Perhaps there’s a better way….
May I offer a better approach? How about answering their question without directly expecting a ‘follow’ or ‘like’ in return? How about providing some value in the group? Maybe it’s a better strategy to answer without any expectation and you will appear more “attractive” to the person asking the question. Maybe they’ll click on your name and see your FB profile. Maybe they’ll be interested in what you do and click on the ‘About’ section of your page.
There are so many ways to bring VALUE to a group and start a genuine, organic relationship with other business owners out there. If I post a question in a FB group, and someone drops a link without taking the time to get to know me first, I will scroll right on by the link and look for the person who is providing value without expecting anything in return right from the get-go.
Even if their intentions well meaning, and not to just get a sale, it still looks like they are just trying to hawk your wares. Now, it’s completely different if the person asking the question is outright asking for or seeking the services of someone who can help them with their specific “problem”. But if they are merely asking a question or seeking advice/help, they are not asking to be bombarded by links.
Effectively use networking on social media:
- to build relationships with other female business owners
- to help bring value and share your expertise
- to seek out potential new customers for your business
Use the idea of attraction marketing and offering value for free to build the “know, like, and trust” factor within your social media interactions. This technique will naturally bring people your way and your business will organically grow as a result.
Interested in hearing more about creating an attraction-based strategy for networking online?
You’re in luck! I have so many thoughts on this topic that I could not fit them all into one blog post. I put them all down in an Ebook! Click this link and take a look at You Can Sit With Us! A Female Entrepreneur’s Guide to Online Networking to learn the why and how of online networking.
PS. See what I did there? I provided you with information about why link-dropping is not the best practice. And gave you ideas for what you can do instead. And THEN, at the end I gave you a link to more information. 🙂