Why You Can’t Bring Yourself To Remove Friends From Facebook

adam   •   January 16, 2011   •   2 Comments
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I use friends in a light term as most of them are not. If you have thousands of friends then I doubt you even know 90% of them but being in business you keep on collecting them in the hopes that you might make a useful contact or they might buy your product one day. I will tell you that this can work and I have made contacts and sales from Facebook just on my friends list but it has cost me far more.

Instead of removing or not adding those people you don’t know or don’t like you keep them on there just to make sure you keep your options open. And that is the problem, keeping your options open does you more harm than good.

With your Facebook feed completely flooded with heaps of garbage how are you ever expected to communicate effectively with everyone you should be communicating with.

The Suprising Study

So how insane is this actual keeping options open? Well it gets pretty bad. Getting straight down to the end of the study (link at the bottom if you want to read more).

They are a number of doors on a computer screen, each with a specific value behind them. Every time you click on them you get paid the amount behind that door (in real money). You only get 100 clicks. Each door has a fixed amount of money behind it that doesn’t change so after you have clicked all the doors you will know what is behind each door.

The trick is after every click each door gets smaller until it eventually disappears. But if you click on the door it will go back to its original size and then start shrinking with each click once again. If you keep clicking on all the doors you will keep them open but the logical approach is to find the door with the most behind it and keep clicking it for the 100 clicks to get the most cash. (By the way, this experiment actually paid out real cash at the end, it wasn’t virtual money).

So what did everyone do? They just couldn’t stand seeing an option close before them so they kept every door open by clicking on it and effectively getting less money in the end just so they could keep options open. Each person knew that to get the most money all you had to do was find the door with the most money behind it and keep clicking on it, yet they still chose to keep options open.

You can read more on the study at this link if you wish: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/26/health/26iht-sntierney.1.10414981.html (I know it’s not the actual source but will give you a greater insight into the study and provide references to the actual study.)

My Facebook Friends List

Right now I currently have 25 Facebook friends (yes I did a massive cull of my list). These people were the ones I wanted to communicate with. About 25% of them are millionaires, 50% own a business turning over revenue somewhere in the 6 figure mark and the other 25% will be there one day soon.

It’s not the size of the business that attracts me to those people but the type of conversations and interests they have. They don’t talk about their business very much at all (in fact I don’t think one of them has mentioned buy my product at any one stage). They talk about their business successes, their personal interests and lives and other fun quirky things. I actually love reading my Facebook feed.

So what has come out of it. I learn about the personal habits of successful people, I make solid connections and friendships, we each give each other value in terms of business development and we have all received business from others, not by plugging any of our services or products but by people just building up trust in each other. Business will be better with a close small group of business people rather than a large group of people you don’t know.

With all that been said I still love making new connections based on people who are generally interested in adding value to the world. I love business development, social good/improving the world, natural/organic living, social media, I was/still am a programmer, and I love comedy. If you want to connect you can catch me on Facebook here. But remember, only if you think we will connect on a more personal level not just business. (so write a message when you friend request me, please)

Oh, and what do I do with family, well there is a crazy invention called the telephone I use to communicate with them occasionally, or I use a car and go and see them :)

So are you friend collecting just to potentially get more business and do you connect with your family on Facebook?

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=813145540 Vincent Turner

    Hi Adam, been enjoying your posts for a while now… but I think the gap in your thought process here is an assumption of a one size fits all for facebook… I think its growth is a reflection of its versatility and people’s subsequent ability to adapt it to the role they see as appropriate for it in their own lives (social, personal or professional)

    For example, I personally don’t use facebook for work .. it is purely a tool for social interaction .. no games either. I’m online 12 hours a day as in IT so it is typically open in the background.. and 95% of my use of it is as a chat client… with about 100 of my ~850 ‘friends’. .. I refuse contact from people I don’t know … and periodically remove (or hide) people who have added me .. but then never followed it up with some form of actual contact.. even though I know them offline.

    I don’t know if my story is typical, in fact my point is I’m sure it both is.. and isn’t. There is probably heaps of people who use the tool the way I do.. and heaps who don’t. 600M+ people.. sounds about right.

    btw, I have pretty much removed having a phone altogether.. even for work, just to complete the comms picture

    • Anonymous

      Hi Vincent. You raise a good point about personal interaction. I myself use it for more business orientated purposes and the article was mainly targeted at people who use it mainly for that.

      I agree, I don’t think there is a 1 size fits all story for how to use Facebook. I’m going to miss the phone and email once it finally disappears from modern society in another decade or so, probably sooner.