Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Setting up a Facebook Event for Your Direct Sales Party

By now you all are aware of the great shopping options available through Direct Sales.  Many companies also now offer the ability to have an online or virtual party.

This is a great way to increase the participation for your in-home party and include out-of-town (or state or country!) friends and family in the fun!  The problem is getting the word out to everyone and keeping it at the top of their mind.

That's where Facebook can be a big help!  If you're like me, you check Facebook regularly (or all day long!)  Chances are, your friends do too!  Adding a Facebook Event to your other invitation efforts can be a great way to engage your guests, increase anticipation for the actual event, and expand the reach of your home party.

The first thing to do is to set up a new Facebook event.  Most of you will be doing this from your timeline (personal account).
  1. Go to the Events tab on the left side of your home page
  2. Click Create Event in the upper-right corner of the page.  From here, you can customize the event, edit its privacy settings and invite guests. 
Read the Facebook help articles about events here.

The next thing you want to do is add the date.  If your party is online only, you can choose to add an end date:

This will keep the event at the top of each guests' event listings!  I don't recommend you do this too far out, perhaps 2 weeks at the most.  You want them reminded not angry!

5/29/12 UPDATE!  Facebook has disabled functionality that allows events to span multiple days :(

Always add a picture!  To do this you have to upload a picture from your computer.  You can find a suitable picture (right click and save it to your computer) or create one of your own using a photo editing software.  Remember that this photo is tiny - don't use lots of text.  Also, don't use the flyer from your event:

Don't assume that your invitees know about the company.  Include a little info for them.  You can copy this from the website or ask your consultant!

Do make it personal.  Don't just copy and paste!  Tell them why you are having the party, what you like about a product, etc.

My most recent hostess did a great job of this:
Jamberry Nails is a new way to replace your nail polish and salon quality nails with nail shields in over 100 different varieties available. You can do your nails at home with just a few simple tools: file, nail scissors, and a hair dryer. The last on your fingers for 2 weeks and your toes for 6 weeks. The special is buy 3 get 1 free (make sure you put all 4 in your shopping cart to get the free credit). Plus free shipping on any orders over $45.
I am really excited to have this mom's night out event with my friends and hope you can come! If you live far or unable to come you can always order online at www.noelgiger.jamberrynails.net and select (hostess party name) from the list of parties at checkout! These are so fun and creative and make great gifts for girls/women of all ages. I LOVE them!! And for the men I've invited- you KNOW your wife wants some! ;)

Here is the catalog: http://www.noelgiger.jamberrynails.net/home/catalog.aspx
Ps. I don't normally 'do' parties like this but HAD to on these because they are SO pretty and neat!!

call me if you have any questions-(phone number)
Doesn't that make you want to check it out?  Her friends have been very active on the event's wall asking questions and getting excited!

That brings me to another point - include your consultant on the invitation.  She can answer questions and post a fun pic or question every now and then to keep it at the top of your guests minds.  (If YOU are the consultant - be very mindful of the honor you've been shown!  Don't SELL on the event wall.  Be kind, polite, helpful and gracious!)

Every time someone updates an event or posts on the wall for an event, the guests get notified.  This varies slightly depending on each person's individual settings, but you can imagine that multiple reminders leading up to the event can increase attendance!  As a hostess - you can take advantage of this by posting a picture of yourself using the product, posting a link to something that's on your wish-list, asking friends to help you decide between two colors or patterns... can you think of some other ways to engage your guests?
Don't be lazy, pick up the phone!
Finally - don't just rely on Facebook to get people to your party (whether it's at home or online!)  There is no substitute for a good personal invitation and a reminder phone call.  OK, for the reminder you could get away with a text message, but if they don't respond, pick up the phone ;)

If you are a page or business looking for info on marketing events, here is a good tutorial from Mari Smith.

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