I’ve done it! I’ve finally reached the maximum popularity that Facebook has deemed “enough.” I have 5,000 Friends. But am I really that popular? And what’s the value of Facebook “Friends” anyways? Here I talk about how to get 5,000 Facebook Friends and why you need them.
If you go with the value that the Social Media Marketing Company Syncapse gives to Facebook Fans, then my “Friends” are worth about $870,000. That’s right! According to Syncapse, each Facebook Fan is worth $174 to a brand.
Since I consider a Friend to be a stronger connection than a simple Fan, I’ll go ahead and double that amount. Boom! I’m a freaking millionaire. I have $1.74 million just sitting there. Horray!
I’ve personally worked with companies that rapidly grew their Facebook fan base, and fans were never worth that much, at least not while I was there.
I sold my business My Mad Methods, to Onnit Labs with about 8,500 Fans. It was then turned into the Onnit Academy fan page (they deleted it after I left) and they infused it with lots of paid Facebook advertising. It grew from my organic 8,500 to about 80,000 in less than 6 months.
I worked with another company that routinely added about 10,000 fans to their page MONTHLY. Based on the $174 per fan valuation, that’s $1.74 million in value. That amount is a projected lifetime value for the fans, but you would still expect some pretty impressive increases in Facebook-driven month-over-month revenue. It didn’t.
There are some unique differences between paying for “Fans” and creating a list of “Friends.” Here are some key points to consider:
The value of Friends really depends on your industry and business. Since one of my primary services involves developing online brands for fitness businesses, my Friends are extremely valuable to me. I connect them with other businesses that need writers, product testers, consultants, partners, and employees. They also give me valuable feedback on the products and services I offer.
To me, my Friends are priceless and represent an incalculable amount of future value in the form of business relationships, customers, and partners.
So, now that you know how much Facebook Friends are worth (to me at least), it’s time to find out how to do it.
Don’t think of getting 5,000 Facebook Friends as some kind of marketing feat, think of it as building an enormous network of like-minded business partners (and actual friends and family of course). Don’t expect to Friend someone and have them instantly become a buyer of your product or service. Expect to make a personal connection or don’t attempt to build a network this way at all.
With that said, here are a few tips to building your Facebook network. They are all free and will help you eventually get to 5,000 Facebook Friends.
If you want more people to Friend you, you need to change your profile picture to something that relates to the network you’re trying to build. If you’re a fitness person, post a picture of yourself training. If you’re a business consultant, make sure your picture is a professional corporate headshot. If you’re a doctor, bust out those scrubs! It’ll seem contrived and uncomfortable to be so blatant at first, but if you expect to grow your network, it’s totally necessary.
Look for people who have profile pictures that relate to your industry, product, or service. If someone is willing to make their most visible picture involve a subject, chances are that they are both active on social media and very, very interested in the subject. Mine was easy of course… you post a picture of yourself in a Kettlebell Sport Competition, chances are that you train with kettlebells. Request a friendship and they’ll probably accept if you are who you say you are.
Don’t just re-post funny memes, actually create content. That means articles, pictures, and other valuable information. Show that you are active, involved, and willing to share knowledge and people will find you. I include dozens of social media posting ideas in my book Unconventional Marketing, so check that out.
Don’t expect to just take, take, take! Show that you are a real person by liking and commenting on your Friend’s stuff. If they share a link to an article, click and read the article, then comment about how you read and appreciate that content (if you actually do appreciate it of course). Try to engage the person who posted.
Join Facebook Groups with subjects you are actually interested in. Get involved, comment, and like posts, then start sharing your own relevant, non-sales content. Eventually lots of people will just add you to Groups (I’ve been added to about 100 or more). Don’t get mad about not volunteering for this, just get involved!
Don’t be shy! If you want to grow your network, you have to open yourself up and get more active. No one ever talks about how un-social someone is, or says things like, “I really like how Sally keeps to herself and has an aversion to Facebook, then tells me about how she hates it.”
No one cares about people they never see or hear about, and if you’re not willing to sell your business no one else will either.