A Like Does Not Replace a Friend on Facebook
I once got a Facebook message from a “friend” saying that she was cutting down her “friend” list, and rather than being friends she wanted me to like her business page and connect with her that way.
Perhaps it goes with out saying that I did not like her business page.
I felt quite snubbed at first. Then after considering it I realized that had she been a real friend, this wouldn’t be an issue – and I don’t need non-friends as “friends” on social media.
Nevertheless, she could have handled this in a better way.
There may well be certain social networks that you want to keep for your closest friends and family. However, there are likely other social networks that you’re comfortable connecting personally with your wider circle of friends.
For example, LinkedIn is a very trusted professional platform, and users do not engage in the same personal ways there as they do on, say, Facebook. However, it still provides a way for people to stay connected personally and as individuals, which is what we all crave.
I may follow my friends’ business pages because I’m interested in what they’re doing and I want to support t their growth. However, that does not take the place of the personal connection I want to maintain with that person.
To honor our relationship, my “friend” could have sent this message:
Hi there, I’ve decided that I’m going to start using Facebook just for personal interactions with my closest family and friends. However, I really want to stay connected, so I’m hoping that we can be friends on LinkedIn instead.
Having received that message, I would have understood her own personal needs for keeping her Facebook account for her closest friends and I also would have felt that she values our relationship and wants to stay in touch in a different way. That would have left me feeling honored and respected, and I would have gladly honored her needs and connected with her on LinkedIn instead.
So, if you find yourself in that situation….remember that your friends want to be connected with YOU, not just your business. Find a way to make it work so you can maintain those friendships that you value.