Let’s start out with some of the Facebook basics because if you’re part of the uninitiated, it’s likely that your account will be shut down.
Facebook has a special initiation…namely ‘follow our rules or die’.
If you don’t know how to use Facebook you need to be “in the know” before you get started in order to avoid any unpleasantness and hassles. This saves you a great deal of time both now and in the long run. Invest a little of your time now in discovering how to properly use Facebook so you avoid losing massive amounts of your time later dealing with account issues and warnings.
Here’s where you get initiated and kept out of the Facebook black hole:
One of the big reasons people use Facebook is for networking. Especially for business, it makes sense because it is a protected environment. This can be a very good thing because it keeps away spammers.
Less Spam = More Attention
This being true, your communications to your friends have a better chance of being read and responded to (which is what you want). Of course, you’ll need to know how to build your friend/contact network. Don’t worry, I’ll talk with you about that and give you tips on how I obtained 2211 friends.
Unfortunately, many new users get caught by the Facebook spam moderators and get their accounts shut down. These guys mean well but unfortunately sometimes the baby gets thrown out with the bathwater.
Even many seasoned Facebook users have had their accounts disabled and banned. Robert Scobleizer (a long-time and experienced Facebook user) wrote about how his account got shut down. He later got it reinstated but why make yourself go through the hassle. After the effort it takes to build up 500, 1000, or more friends, you want to protect your account and the time that you’ve put in.
There are some basic rules that you want to follow. When you are sending friend requests always include a personal message and only send the same message to 8-9 people before changing it up and sending a different one.
Realize this is a general guideline and Facebook changes their algorithm periodically. They also have human administrators that check things out when a filter is triggered.
To be ultra safe at the start when you first signing up and are getting comfortable with the Facebook laws and user community you may want to send only 5 of the same personal message each day.
This ‘message’ field is available when you do a friend request. To be clear here’s a pic of what I’m talking about:
Facebook won’t tell you exactly what their filter is but right now it seems if you send 10 or more of the same messages on the same day it triggers one of their filters and you’ll get an account warning. If you exceed the limit for account warnings (seems to be between three and five), your account will be disabled.
So the thing to remember is to vary your messages when you’re sending friend requests. I recommend, and I practice this method, that whenever you’re requesting a friend you include a personal message of how you know them or if you know one of their friends mention that name and what kind of business you are in along with your contacting them. Or if you found them through a common interest group mention that in the message because it is an instant commonality and bond you share with them (which raises the chances they’ll accept your friend request).
Also, when you are e-mailing friends you make within Facebook, you must vary your message here as well. I don’t recommend emailing people you aren’t yet true friends with because it can lead to trouble. Facebook likes to enable communication between friends and has a filter that you could ‘trip’ by emailing random users. So, if you are coming out with some new product or some new cool website you want to set up an event to notify all your friends instead of attempting to e-mail them all individually because that will cause your account to get shut down. Events are one of the Facebook applications that I’ll talk with you about further later.
You now know some of the basics of the Facebook community and how to interact with people without getting your account shut down. Follow these basic guidelines and you’ll have a good Facebook experience.
Basically, don’t send the same friend request more than 10 times per day, and don’t send the same email to your friends more than 10 times per day. I’m talking when you’re doing cutting and pasting. These are guidelines that are working right now but to be ultra safe you could do only 5 of the same per day.
Now for another huge bugaboo…mass emails. You know the ones that are sent to you and 100 other email addresses in the ‘to field’
Here’s an example:
As you can see there are many email addresses that this was sent to and this makes people (especially Facebook people) angry. You’ll often get angry messages back in response and even some hate messages. Also, many of those people may unfriend you. This can hurt your ability to make new friends. It’s just not worth it. So stay away from this. The right way to do it is by using the Events application. Setup an event and invite all your friends to it through the events invite function. That’s the only way to do this correctly.
Email is a 1-to-1 communication and you should always think of it as you have a face-to-face conversation with someone sitting across the table from you or next to you on a couch or in a chair.
Next time we’ll talk about powering up your networking through a huge time-saving tactic.
This is a guest post by Alexander Alaric. Make sure to show him some love because he’s got a lot more to come in this series.