What are your Facebook friends selling?

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While it’s great Facebook friends can sell things on Facebook, sometimes it’s annoying.

If you are inviting me to your party to sell me something but you don’t invite me to your other parties, I might not be that keen on going.

Sure, it will be fun with the other women, the drinks and party food will be  And I appreciate your entrepreneurialism and want to be excited for what you are selling. I want to support you.

So yes, it will be a fun night out. And really, if my only cost is to buy a $40 something (hopefully a product I want) maybe that’s not so bad. It could easily cost that much for a night out.

But it’s still annoying at times. You view me as a sale.

Kudos to you for your hustle, drive and determination. However, sometimes, I have a right to feel offended, particularly when we aren’t that great of friends, and the only time you reach out to me is because you want to sell me something.

Facebook friends selling stuff

Chances are, your Facebook friends are selling a lot of things.

There are many excellent direct sales opportunities out there. There’s Rodan + Fields, Usborne Books, Young Living Essential Oils, LuLaRoe, and many more. We all remember the industry leaders: Avon, Mary Kay, Tupperware, and The Pampered Chef.

These are all excellent companies. They offer quality products and amazing opportunities for (often) stay-at-home moms and dads.

Being invited to a {sales} party

It got me to thinking about all the parties my friends used to invite me to. Sales parties. I loathed them in the 1990s – 2000s because there were so many. I always wanted to say,

Here, just take this.” <Give them $30.> “I don’t know what you would profit off of me if I bought something but I’m really only here to be polite. And I really do not want to buy anything. Where are the snacks?”

Tupperware, The Pampered Chef, Mary Kay, Avon, some candle company.

I’m sure I went to a few more early on. In the early 2000s, it was jewelry: Albert Condren (I actually loved the three things I bought from this party/brand) and Lia Sophia and jewelry brand I can’t remember but I remember that shiny paper gold box.

What are your Facebook friends selling
What are your Facebook friends selling?

Stella & Dot, Cheeky Couture, Thirty-One Gifts, Origami Owl… it goes on and on.

And nails! A few years ago I spent $22 on nail decals I still have yet to use.

Books! When my kids were mini, my friend was selling Usborne Books from her home so she could get books for her home. We already had so many books. And with book stores and my public library, sorry, but I wasn’t looking for more books. But I was obligated to buy a few, and we enjoyed them over the years.

Recently, I was invited to a Cabi party. I actually loved the $95 skirt I bought but I didn’t need it, wouldn’t have ever spent that much on a skirt and only bought it to support the woman selling it.

Again, I support all of these businesses and direct sales and think they are great.

I also love the idea of getting women together.

So if I’m going to spend money on a night out with friends, how is this really that different?

And I’ll even come home with candles, books, skincare products, etc. But sometimes it’s just too much.

Virtual sales parties are great

One of the greatest things that have come out of social media is now there are virtual sales parties instead of in-person parties.

Easier to ignore

There’s so much less guilt in saying No to a virtual party when there are so many other people invited. These types of sales “invitations” are even quite easy to ignore.

I often procrastinate in RSVPing with my No because I don’t want to start or contribute to a downward spiral of other people saying No. For sure, no virtual party hostess wants to have a virtual party fail.

Don’t need to make an excuse about why you can’t attend

There’s just less pressure all around. You don’t have that pressure where you can’t just say no — that pressure when you have to give an excuse. “Sorry, I can’t make it Friday. Bobby has a basketball game.”

You won’t ever want to make the mistake of saying, “I wish I could go but Bobby has a basketball game.” If you’ve ever made this mistake, you won’t make it a second time. What you have done is given an opening for the salesperson/friend to say, “I’ll get you a catalog.” Or more 21st-century, “I’ll send you the link so you can shop conveniently online.”

No thanks. I am cheap and don’t want to buy anything. I was just trying to be polite. Pretty much, I didn’t know how to just say “No, I can’t make it.”

Not missing out on a night out

And I’m not missing out on a fun night by declining, which is a bonus.

Inexpensive for them to market

What’s great is it’s inexpensive for these friends/sellers to remind me what company they represent. If and when I’m ever wanting something from that company, I know who to get in touch with.

They can post helpful tips

Pretty much no matter what someone is selling, Facebook is the perfect medium for it. Your Facebook friends can post their helpful solutions for skin, hair, and cleaning problems.

Read the post or don’t; it doesn’t matter. You can choose to Like or Comment on it or decide to scroll on by.

You can avoid seeing their posts

Also, you can opt to “Mute for 30 days” when you tire of them. You can also do the ever-popular “Stop Seeing Notifications from this Person” and your Facebook-selling friends won’t even know.

This isn’t meant to discourage you from being supportive of your friends who are trying to make a living. However, every once in a while you might need a break from the sales pitches.

Being annoyed with Facebook friends selling products

Some of my Facebook friends have started posting about this. Someone wrote:

Am I literally the only Facebook friend that isn’t selling oils or jewelry or candles or charm bracelets or makeup or beauty serum or leggings or fill-in-the-blank home business?”

Lots of people chimed in, including many who do sell things. No one seemed to be offended but it offered interesting perspectives.

Still, even though it’s passive, I have several friends who are very annoyed when they see their Facebook friends selling something.

Once over lunch, one of them joked she had too many “oils friends.” It was cold and flu season, and there had been a lot of people selling doTERRA and Young Living Essential Oils, posting helpful remedies and products.

I haven’t been annoyed by it or felt like my Newsfeed was crowded with sales pitches. I actually think some of those Rodan + Fields’ 1980s references were really funny and attention-getting. Usually, I see who it is posting and think, “She sells XX,” and I just scroll on by.

My friend who at lunch complained about having too many oils friends later texted us as a follow up: “Buy oils, drink this tea. Use this lotion. Try this spice. I’m over it.”

Virtual sales on Facebook

Most people don’t mind the virtual sales pitches on Facebook. It’s less costly for the “business owner” and easier too.

virtual sales parties on Facebook
Virtual sales parties on Facebook are convenient and don’t obligate friends

It’s subtle selling now. The people selling can be less “in your face.”

They can set up a special group. They can have giveaways and contests. Anyone who wants to buy, can still buy.

It’s awesome how Facebook has become an advertising and marketing channel for these types of businesses.

Facebook keeps costs down for them, and we, their customers, aren’t put into awkward face-to-face situations. We can hide behind our screens, and choose not to buy.

Am I a customer or are we friends?

But, I can’t help feeling a little annoyed when I’m suddenly popular with these virtual invitations. Would you be hounding me to come to your party if it was just, well, a party? No. I’ve seen all the other things you were doing without me.

I’m justified in feeling a little miffed that suddenly we are best friends because you want to sell me something. Do you ever invite me to your other parties, you know, when you’re not selling something?

I had a Facebook friend who continued to follow up with me about coming to her sales party. I had RSVP’d no because of a conflict. She messaged me more than once about coming afterwards. Eventually I discovered she unfriended me.

We can probably all agree it’s easier now that these direct sales parties happen online. If you are interested in buying products from your friends, great!

But if you aren’t interested, don’t need, or can’t afford what they are selling, these virtual parties let you save time and money, and you won’t miss out on anything fun socially.

What are your Facebook friends selling?

My friend ended the text chain with,

And don’t get me started on my Juice Plus friend.”

It was the perfect end to a perfect text string. The next time we talk, I’m going to remind her how much better it is to see this on Facebook than to be obligated face-to-face and to feel the need to attend in-person sales parties.

Again, we love to support stay-at-home businesses. It takes hustle, drive, commitment, and determination.

What do you think of your Facebook friends selling things on Facebook?

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