How do you start conversations in Messenger to network with and (indirectly) prospect people? How do you open up a normal conversation that doesn't feel forced?
It all starts with the FORM formula (hah! That rhymes).
Family. Occupation. Recreation. Motivation.
Family. What does your home life look like? Use this question or a variation thereof (I'm sure you can find a better angle - this is my least fav in the list admittedly). Now, I don't use this at the beginning because I find it a little awkward as it can come off creepy especially if you are a woman on the receiving end as it's so personal - let's be honest here. No one wants to be stalked online unless it's for their business, boo. So I usually use this as a last question in this list of four for when I've built up some rapport with someone first. I might answer this question this way: "I have two dogs; they are puggles. I raised them from when they were pups." Just saying this...someone might connect with me on a deeper level simply because they have or love dogs too.
Occupation. What do you do for work? When you chat with them, I would give them a little background on your career life. I would tell them I have over a decade of copywriting experience because it's been the majority of my career. I might mention I had a shoe line and they might have an interest in fashion. Connection. And then we might chat about New York Fashion Week. But don't ask them this question in order for you to respond with a dozen voice clips telling them ad nauseam about your business. Give them a line or two. The top note, love. That's plenty unless someone asks you for more information or details. If they don't ask, don't tell. They're likely not interested.
Recreation. What do you do for fun? I would say I love to go to the beach, love art galleries, and wine tasting. Then, they'd get to know me a little bit. They'd get the idea I'm a creative. I might mention I love cars too - especially to men - that's a great way for me to connect with men because most men love cars. Whereas women love fashion. So you might pick what interests and hobbies you share depending on whether you are talking to a man or woman or particular people who have certain interests. You can target what you share depending on who you talk to as long as it's honest. Obvy.
Motivation. What motivates you? Why are they doing whatever they are doing in their profession? They might say they are motivated now and fulfilling their life goal. They might say they are searching for something better because they want to spend more time with their husband and kids. Then they will likely ask what you do and they might want to head in your direction, eventually. And when they do, they will probably think of you as long as you stay top of mind and in contact with them as a friend.
To me, Occupation and Recreation are the easiest to ask about first. They are the most non-threatening when you are approaching a total stranger. Family and Motivation I feel are best asked a little later as they're more intimate - you would normally talk more with friends about these two topics so I reverse the order a bit. 'Cause that's how I do me, boo.
In all of this, you are not sending them links...unless they specifically ask you to learn more about your business. You're building a friendship and a relationship - whether that means they become a partner, customer, or even friend. Either way, it's ok. Maybe they'll be three people removed from someone who might want to network with you and become a future contributor to your business. You just never know.
Just start conversations and get things flowing. Don't have a timeline on mentioning your business. You could become besties in a week or two. Or you might never be friends with this person like E.V.E.R. That's as ok as The Bachelor casting Colton as their next lead even though he has no clue what he wants. Let it all unfold naturally the way it would in public. Just have a normal convo. We won't connect and get along with everyone we come in contact with. You might not be each other's cup of tea. If one person is not a match for you, there will be another around the corner who is. There are more than enough people on FB to connect with. Like 2 billion. Seriously.
Want the scoop on posting on your Facebook profile? I have you covered right here, chica.
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