Seattle Community

Sales Coach, Success Coach, Business Coach
Portland, Oregon
Posted by Tshombe Brown, Portland, Oregon | Mar 29, 2009

Subscribe to Portland Collaborative Thinktank for Conscious Entrepreneurs - Discussion How NOT to Use Facebook for Business

I recently had a couple of experiences on Facebook that illustrate how NOT to build relationships online, and I'm thinking about hosting an event or writing an article on this very topic.

I'd love to get your feedback, ideas, and experiences.

So, here's the question on the table: "How to Lose Friends (before you even make them!) and Alienate People on Facebook"

(This is about Facebook in particular, though many of the principles can be applied to social networking in general -- though it should be noted that different forms of the media have some differences in how you approach and utilize them)

1 Biznik has posted a reply

  • Sales Coach, Success Coach, Business Coach 
Portland, Oregon 
Tshombe Brown
    Posted by Tshombe Brown, Portland, Oregon | Mar 30, 2009

    Here's an example of where a well-meaning action on Facebook can backfire in your face.  If this happened to someone else, it is quite likely they would have simply removed the person from being their Facebook Friend.  Or worse, reported them as a SPAMMER.

    I received my coach training from Terri Levine of The Coaching Institute.  She recently started a group on Facebook, called EXTRAordinary Coaches, which I joined.  As a result, someone contacted me indicating that she noticed that we were both members of the new group and requested that we become Facebook Friends.  I accepted her request, sending her a message thanking her for reaching out to me.

    Almost immediately, I received on my Facebook Wall the following from her:

     Tshombe, Thanks for being my friend! Please get my free eCourse "Coaching Business Blast Off" at or visit my blog and register for my Free weekly teleclass at

    My first inclination was to remove her as my Facebook Friend, but instead I sent this message:

    "S______," we've just met! I feel like it's the "first date" and you're already wanting to get to home base! Can we get to know each other before you start marketing to me?

    She apologized, offering that she didn't mean to offend:

    I was offering an invitation to something free. I have a lot of coaches who really enjoy my free teleseminars and are grateful to get the help and information. I am very sorry if my offer was offensive to you...please accept my apology.

    I wish I could offer the response I gave, but I'll just have to give the gist, as it appears that she has deleted it from her profile so that I'm unable to cut-and-paste it here.

    I told her that I was sure that her teleseminars are valuable and that I'd no doubt enjoy them.  I mentioned that perhaps I was in her target market, even.

    However, I told her, it's a delicate balance in social networking because it is by its very nature relationship-based.  Since she was the one who had reached out to me to become Facebook Friends and as soon as I accepted the request, she offered me her free eCourse, it appeared that getting me into her sales cycle was the only motive behind the Friends request.