Do you sell your time or services? Wondering how your Facebook personal profile could help you grow your business?
In this article, you'll find a step-by-step guide to how and why to use your Facebook profile to promote your services.
Why Promote From a Facebook Personal Profile Rather Than a Facebook Business Page?
Facebook page reach has been in steady decline for years. Consumers are more aware of data privacy than ever before and brand sentiment toward Facebook is down. Facebook is also struggling to retain young people on its platform.
However, there are other benefits to Facebook that shouldn't be overlooked. Facebook groups, for example, continue to be a hotbed for service providers and like-minded creators who want to network with one another. If you're just getting started or have a small audience, a faster monetization path is to connect with fellow entrepreneurs directly and build rapport.
Agency owners and entrepreneurs often want to connect directly with other decision-makers and founders. If you're looking to strike up a strategic partnership or want a fellow business owner to become your next client, being visible and credible on Facebook specifically from your personal profile can be a terrific way to get the ball rolling.
In most cases, the call to action (CTA) of choice is encouraging prospective customers to join you in the comments section or send you a direct message in Messenger.
Facebook has its fair share of tools for driving conversations to Messenger, such as bot automations and the Appointments feature, but these features are for pages. What if you're still dialing in your offer or want to test a new one?
You wouldn't want to build a bot automation for a value proposition that isn't yet validated and proven. Facebook personal profile marketing is a low-tech approach to get in front of your network of decision-makers directly and personably.
In this example, a post promoting a beta test of a new high-ticket offer resulted in eight sales calls and three conversions for a total of $28,000 in gross revenue.
By building a direct network of fellow entrepreneurs and decision-makers on your Facebook personal profile, you'll develop an audience you can lean on to test and explore different offers. Here are a few considerations to keep in mind as you develop this strategy.
#1: Set Up and Populate an “Avatar” Custom List on Your Facebook Profile
For many of us, our friend lists on Facebook are a hodgepodge of friends, family, and various contacts from throughout the years. I've personally had a Facebook account for 17 years now—whew! You might feel self-conscious about aggressively promoting your business or personal brand to your entire network, especially if you're just getting started.
Custom lists can be a great workaround. Think of custom lists as “Facebook friend segmentation.” By sorting your connections into different categories, you can create segments and have certain posts be seen only by certain friend groups.
The pro of custom lists is that you can get out of your head about promoting yourself. This is a real fear that holds people back from marketing their services, programs, and products. The con of custom list marketing is that your posts won't be shareable. Remember that everyone in your custom list is also your friend so you can easily toggle back and forth between audiences once you're done with setup.
To set up a custom list, open Facebook on your desktop and locate the left-side menu. Navigate to the Friends tab and click it.
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Then locate and click Custom Lists.
From here, you'll be able to create custom lists. I created some for school friends and past cities I've lived in. I also created a list called “Avatar.”
Once you've created the list, you can immediately start adding friends to it to jumpstart the sorting process.
My experience is that Facebook sometimes freezes up once you're several hundred friends into the sorting process. Once you've exhausted your efforts here, the “birthday method” can be a helpful, low-maintenance approach. Every day, look at which connections have birthdays and sort them directly from the birthday list.
#2: Market Your Business or Personal Brand With 5 Types of Facebook Personal Profile Posts
Let's start marketing to your shiny new custom list. When writing a post on your Facebook personal profile, be sure to toggle to your avatar list by clicking the gray box directly underneath your name. This will open up your different audience options.
Once you've chosen your preferred audience, proceed with one of five different types of Facebook personal profile content marketing posts.
Pro Tip: Treat Custom Backgrounds Like Headlines
If your post is 130 characters or fewer, you can use the Custom Background feature on Facebook to create a burst of color and stop the scroll. You could use this space to create a curiosity-inducing headline, and then deliver the rest of your post in the first comment.
Clicking to read the comments counts as an engagement point and is a good way to add visual appeal to text-only posts. Additionally, contacts who do so will be more likely to see future posts from you in their feed.
Educational posts are the cornerstone of content marketing. They're a great way to build thought leadership and positive perception with your network when you market from your Facebook personal profile.
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Educational posts are all about showing off your expertise and industry awareness while also maintaining clarity. If the information you share is filled with jargon or difficult to understand, your message will have a tough time slicing through the noise.
What are some nuances about your industry that others may not know about? Why should anyone care about this? Keep it clear and make stopping the scroll your primary objective.
Here's an example post from a previous iteration of my business, in which I offered PR services to entrepreneurs. I used an educational post to help people in my network better understand the numbers being thrown at them by various agencies. Notice how I bracket the beginning of the post, almost like a subject line, to establish relevancy.
This post got traction and several direct message requests so I later turned it into a blog post and an email newsletter. This is another perk of Facebook personal profile marketing; you can test ideas and language to see what resonates with a smaller audience, then farm this content and spruce it up before posting it on larger channels or sending it to your list.
These are the posts that bring in the money. Your Facebook personal profile can be a great place to test or soft-launch new offer types that you might want to incorporate into your business later.
When writing an offer post (like the one at the beginning of this article), emphasize clarity and positioning. Who is this offer for and not for? Get specific, with your CTA to send you a direct message if the offer is of interest.
Commenting on the post with a word or emoji can also be a strategy but I prefer a CTA to head over to Messenger and continue the conversation there. Some people in your network might be interested but don't want to publicly indicate that they want to become your lead.
Remember that clicking the See More prompt on a Facebook post also counts as engagement and will improve subsequent distribution. Experiment with both approaches to see which one works best for you.
Origin stories and personal anecdotes from your life or business can be a great way to add value and emotion in a relatable, compelling way. Remember, this is a more personalized and intimate approach to content marketing. Your contacts who are considering you or your company want to buy your offer but they also want to buy into you—your experiences, stories, and vibe as a founder or decision-maker.
What made you start your business in the first place? Was there a moment in your career or life where everything clicked or where everything completely fell apart? Think of ways you can give a glimpse into your own personal journey and the “why” behind your efforts.
Social Proof and Testimonials
Testimonials and publicity are like liquid gold in marketing. Mentions in media or happy clients can be great ways to flex your offer and make your network aware that you're in demand and getting results now.
Media logos and other “as seen in” features project authority and create instant credibility with your network. Testimonials can be a great way to bring an outside voice into the conversation to share their experience with your product, program, or service.
Pro Tip: Instead of sharing a link to your media placement, take a screenshot of it instead and then put the link in a comment. This helps ensure your post still gets quality reach in case the domain authority of the website you're linking out to is low.
Content marketing for your personal brand can quickly slide into “guru” territory. Remember to occasionally incorporate more “social” posts that encourage casual conversation, lively debate, or overall relatedness.
When your post is relatable, it gives your connections an opportunity to take you off a pedestal and relate to you as a human. Often, these moments of relatedness today spark conversations that lead to valuable business relationships in the months and years to come.
Pull From Past Posts for Inspiration
In addition to the posting strategies mentioned above, there are a few tips to help you get the most out of your Facebook personal profile marketing strategy.
Can't remember that awesome quote you posted 6 years ago on your profile? Facebook's internal search engine will steer you in the right direction. In most cases, it's faster than trying to scroll back through months (or years) of past posts on your own profile feed.
To locate this, search a word or phrase you know was in a past post. Then, click Posts, Posts From, and You to filter the results.
#3: Encourage Connections to Make You a “Favorite” on Facebook
Help your most engaged readers and connections see everything you post. Create a CTA for people to add you as a favorite. Not only will your posts be prioritized but also contacts who have you as a favorite will receive a notification every time you post an update.
On desktop, users can hover over your name and set you as a favorite from the Friends button, which is actually a drop-down menu.
On mobile, users can navigate to the three vertical dots in the upper-right corner of any of your posts, then add you as a favorite from there.
#4: Track Simple KPIs for Your Facebook Personal Profile Posts
Unfortunately, we don't have an analytics dashboard for Facebook personal profile posts—yet. If you're using this approach as a coach, consultant, or creator, however, you could manually note the following two metrics to determine if your posts are resonating with readers.
- Comments: If contacts come out of the woodwork to respond to you, you've struck a chord. Pay attention to what elicits engagement, and then do more of what works.
- Direct messages: Inviting users to slide into your DMs on Facebook can be a great way to start sales conversations in a casual, private setting, or just direct people to a new lead magnet.
Also consider posting as yourself in Facebook groups. Quality, relevant content shared in Facebook groups can be a great way to attract business connections and even future clients. Be sure to check and respect the group rules. Instead of making a desperate grab for leads, strive to publish posts so good people can't help but want to add you as a friend and follow you.
More people are opting to use a Facebook personal profile to network with fellow entrepreneurs and grow their businesses. If this is an approach you want to explore, treat your feed like an editorial calendar and you'll see the needle move.
Get More Advice on Facebook Marketing
- Split test your organic content on Facebook.
- Optimize your Facebook strategy for leads and conversions.
- Use Facebook Insights to analyze your activities.
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