Imagine you’re enjoying a weekend BBQ with family and friends, enjoying a couple of beers, the kids are tearing around the backyard and you’re talking about the renovations that you’re planning.

Then one of the guests, someone you don’t know that well, sidles up and starts trying to sell you something. Not appropriate!

I was talking to a client a while back who was shifting his marketing focus and wanted to put everything into Facebook. He was selling sewer related equipment to council engineers!

I tried to explain that if these guys were on Facebook, they were there to keep in touch with friends, share jokes and share pictures of the kids. They weren’t there for work, and they wouldn’t respond well to companies trying to sell them work related equipment on there.

You don’t want to be that guy at the party.

Facebook can be great for consumer products, where you can get genuine social and viral endorsement through people sharing their favourite cafes, bars, restaurants and brands – but the simple fact is, the average user doesn’t go there to work, so it’s not effective for business to business sales.

This doesn’t mean that social media has nothing to offer B2B brands – quite the opposite in fact. LinkedIn has been described as ‘Facebook for work’, and is generally used very effectively for work networking and professional development.

Look out for a post soon on how B2B companies can get the most out of LinkedIn.