We all have something we are selling, be it goods, services or ideas. Whether or not they translate to actual cash versus popularity or acceptance is irrelevant as that is not always the aim for everybody. But it does not make it any less of a sale. We're all still selling something.
In selling, let us be mindful of other people's space and time even as we pitch "our thing" to them. That's why I love facebook as a social networking and marketing tool. You can post whatever you want on your wall all day long and it will show up on your friends' home pages. Whoever is interested will click on it. An interesting question might spur a discussion. A much needed bit of information might encourage clicks to a link. You might actually make money if someone buys something. You might get a thank you for insightful words shared. And whoever is not interested just keeps it moving. Like we say in Nigeria, "Notin spoil."
Of course we have the inbox messages and depending on how you use it, you could actually get on people's nerves. For those with a fan page to push what they are selling, you can also send updates to fans. That can start to get on people's nerves if they are too frequent. The good thing about it however is that anyone who so pleases can "un-friend" you, if that is a word or choose to no longer be a fan of your page, if they are uncomfortable with the pressure or the frequency of your updates. Or they could simply hide your updates and that way, everybody is happy.
Twitter is even better, for those who can keep up with it. It all happens in real time except someone retweets. You only see tweets so far back. It's all dynamic. Whatever you don't catch when it is happening is gone, except you go search it out by hashtag or on the sender's page.
When you are physically selling to people in their own space, the same rules apply. They have invited or allowed you in out of the goodness of their heart. And the fact that you have brought lunch, a fruit bowl, free samples or other incentive does not negate the fact that you are in their space. Try to be mindful of their space and time or you might lose the privilege of being able to pitch to them, just like on facebook.
Always remember, they don't have to listen to you at all, they don't have to visit your page, they don't have to make that comment, and they don't have to press the like button. It is totally of their free will and you cannot force it. Do not push so hard that they wish they had never let you in.