How Not to Sell on Facebook

We all know that the internet is a strange place. Lots of people use it with respect, and decent companies use it without incident.

This all went down because a brand did not vet their seller enough, did not require sales training on how to properly represent them, and is clearly not making anyone accountable for poor actions on their behalf. If this was an employee, they would be promptly sacked. It was interesting enough that I wanted to share it here for brands that are using this type of sales approach or possibly with a lack of monitoring on their distribution team.

This could happen to your company if you are not paying attention. I’m using it here as a learning example.

Recently, I saw this fine example of how this cold sales approach went very wrong, very quickly from a questionable approach, lack of research, to making someone feel “less than” in order to get a sale. The names are omitted so that the flames die down, but rest assured that this rider’s friends were quick to defend and the rider herself took the high road in her response.

We’ve all seen examples of this, but this one really took the cake.

How NOT to sell on Facebook.

Step One: Post a random question to someone about an unrelated person. Joe O’Brian is a heralded Irish jump jockey, not a dressage rider, and does not have the same name as the rider this seller contacted.

Step Two: Assume that you know where your target struggles with their riding. Trolling a highly competent rider with a magic sock to improve posture is laughable, and also lazy.


Step Three: Start a war of some 90+ responses from this rider’s friends who neatly came to her rescue regarding this seller’s tactics.

Step Four:  Hide the name of the product. Interestingly, this person did not even post the name or a link to the product for anyone to see or purchase if they were swayed by her pitch. By the end of the thread, I really wanted to know what these socks were.

To this seller’s credit, she did eventually see the error of her ways and posted an apology, but not after the rider was mightily defended by her friends. Plus, she continued to justify and make excuses, which waters down an honest apology.

However, I would personally LOVE to see white papers on magic posture improving socks.  I long worked with life-science professionals and have seen many a white paper on a variety of high-tech products.

Nobody is really sure who this person is, as many of her additional claims in the thread didn’t make rational sense.

My point is that if you dare to sales/troll online, be prepared for people to not take you seriously. Sadly, we see this uneducated behavior all the time and we’ve gotten used to it.

If your company employs this type of tactic, stop it. Now. It will backfire every time.

Final note:  to be clear, this rider above is our very own brand ambassador and we’re proud of how she handled this situation with class. Read more about her riding goals in 2019: