Using Facebook to Sell Your Stuff

I’ve heard the complaints. “Facebook is horrible for marketing! I can’t sell anything on Facebook anymore!” “All Facebook wants is my money!”

Actually, none of that is true. Yes, Facebook wants your money, but, that’s not all they want.

Yes, you should consider using some of your money. How much would you have to pay radio or TV  to support the huge network of customers Facebook can become for you?

After all, you don’t want to lose that network, do you?

Over the next three days, I’m going to help you get started setting up your Facebook account to sell your stuff. It’s easy to do. And, this is a simple to follow set of instructions. In about 30 days, you’ll find you’ll be able to reach more people with your offers and make more sales.

Understanding How Facebook Works

First you need to understand this fact. Facebook is no different from Google or other sites that “rank” content. They do this for the convenience of their users. Search engines and social platforms must weigh, and  rank things their users experience.

Both Google and Facebook use what we call an “algorithm.” That’s a mathematical formula to calculate the importance of posts. This is what determines what you see  on the first page of a search engine or on the top of your timeline.

Facebook calls this the product of this formula “EdgeRank”. The EdgeRank  determines the value of each post you create. It compares your post to the likes and interests of  all the other people on Facebook.

Those people who like you, follow you or have shown an interest in what you have posted may see your post. Or they may not. It depends on that formula.

Over the next three days, you’re going to learn how to “hack” the Facebook algorithm. You’ll come up with a plan to share your posts with the most people possible on Facebook.

The Facebook EdgeRank Formula

In this algorithm, there are three basic parts of the formula which you can control:

  • Quality of Posts
  • Popularity
  • Interest (Value)

When you finish this series, you’ll understand how to rehabilitate your Facebook page. You’ll also know if you should start anew, to reach more people with your sales message.

QUALITY OF POSTS

Over the years, I’ve destroyed one of my Facebook profiles. I posted all sorts of political diatribes, arguments and discussions. As a result,  the profile really struggled to get any views by my friends.

I shared links to sites that offended some. I made posts that offended others. And, occasionally, I posted some “good content” that was never seen by those I hoped would see it.

The quality of my posts, in the eyes of my friends, were reduced to a mere rubble.

So, forsome days (about 25 or so), I stopped posting to that profile. I still commented on posts and wished friends happy birthday. Except for automatic posts  to my Facebook page (via IFTTT), there were no posts on my profile.

Then, I started posting more high-quality posts. These are posts relevant to the people I wanted to reach. People I wanted to capture as my customers.

I started sharing articles from other websites that were relevant to those people.

I started finding memes that would capture the interests of those people I wanted to reach.

And, I had captured a series of images that would inspire and encourage those people I wanted to serve.

And, for the next 25 days, I targeted my posts to reach them.

I also increased the quality of my “personalized” posts. That was difficult for me. I had posted many great personalized posts in the past. Posts bragging on my wife and our relationship, or on my job (as the pastor of a small church). But, I had to “step it up.”

I got creative.

I posted a daily image that included a Scripture, with a short explanation.

I posted one image from a collection containing inspirational quotes each day.

Since I’m proud of the state and area where I live, I posted links, images or posts bragging about my home once a day.

I want to help Alabama (my home state) businesses make more money. My focus is to help them through social media marketing.  I started posting articles from this blog (and others) to help them. I shared in self-education and encouragement. I showed them how to get things done (or hire me to consult them in the process).

I also compiled a list of articles by other leaders in this industry. These articles will  help local businesses with mnarketing. My followers will   get the jump on their competition on social media platforms.

My goal in this rehab was to do the following:

  1. Increase interest in my posts so they would be seen by more of my followers and friends.
  2. Increase value of my posts for local business owners I wanted to sell products and services to.
  3. Increase the quality of my posts in the eyes of Facebook so that all my posts were much more visible in the future.

POPULARITY

I mentioned that my old Facebook profile has nearly 3,000 friends. Some of them are family members. Some are old classmates. Some are more business related contacts.

That number is important. The more friends you have on Facebook, the higher Facebook ranks your popularity. But, that number isn’t as important as the engagement you collect from your posts.

Engagement is a huge factor in the Facebook EdgeRank algorithm.

Engagement can be a simple “reaction”. That’s a click on those icons underneath the post to tell others how you feel about the post.

Engagement is also when a follower or friend comments or shares your posts. The more likes, shares and comments you get, the more Facebook will share it with others.

CAUTION: Facebook will NOT like if if you ASK for likes, shares or comments! They pay attention to that! Be very careful!

You want to increase the number of responses to your posts. But, you don’t want to  “beg” for them.

INTEREST (VALUE)

That brings us to the third part of Facebook’s EdgeRank formula you can control. The value of your posts to the people you want to reach.

Let’s say  you’re trying to reach tomato growers. Don’t waste your time and share a lot of content that has nothing to do with tomatoes, or gardening.

Share stuff they want to see, read, watch or understand!

And, like I said above, include some “personal” stuff that appeals to them!

Maybe you tweaked a tomato salad recipe and it was a hit. Share that with your tomato gardeners!

Let them see what you did. Show them how it looked. Include photos of the people you served. Describe where you served it… give them all the details. (And give it to them on Facebook!)

YOUR TASK (SHOULD YOU DECIDED TO ACCEPT IT)

In the next seven days, compile several lists to help you in this process:

  1. A full description of the people you want to buy what you’re selling
  2. A full description of the likes, interests and desires of those people
  3. A list of 30-60 internet links that appeal to those likes, interests and desires
  4. A list of 30 things you can write about that appeal to those likes, interests and desires
  5. A list of images (memes, quote images, etc) that appeal to these people
  6. Five different things you can sell to this audience that will be ready to sell in 30 – 60 days.

Tomorrow, I’ll help you plan and schedule how to use these posts to help you reach more customers in your business’ niche.