I’m walking into my favorite clothing store, and almost instantly… “Hi! What are we looking for today?” Or, “Hello and welcome! Is there something specific you’re looking for?” I try my best to smile politely because they really are being kind and doing what they were trained to do, but inside I’m cringing. I quickly reply, “Nope. Just looking. Thanks,” and move on.
Following the exchange I intentionally avoid all store employees until I need a fitting room or am ready to check out. Am I the only one? I doubt it, but I’d love to hear your thoughts on those super hands-on retailers.
That same “pouncing customer service,” as I call it, can be felt online when our friends start selling direct sales, start their own small businesses, or involve themselves in any type of hobby they hope we will support them in. But I’m here to also tell you that when it’s your friend and their happy hobby, you should embrace the pounce. Support your friend and expect them to support you too, but know that supporting them doesn’t necessarily mean spending money or committing yourself to some big project.
Instead, consider the following three ways to support your friends and their happy hobbies, and you can expect them to reciprocate the love.
LIKE, SHARE, WORD OF MOUTH
Your friend (or friends) likely has at least one social media page or a website, and it is your responsibility as the good friend you are to share those resources, not once, but often. Share Facebook pages, YouTube channels, Instagram, website URLs, whatever it is they need people to see. Show your support by sharing. It is very quite simple, and I can tell you it feels great when you see others sharing your content.
Let’s say your friend is selling some type of Tupperware or kitchen tools, and you spend very little time in your kitchen and care more about take out menus than anything that friend has to offer. That’s okay. Your friend will understand.
That doesn’t mean you get a free pass from supporting them. Learn a little bit about or show a little interest in your friend’s happiness. Take some time to understand what it is that your friend is doing. Why does that thing make them so happy? Why are they doing it? Talk to them about it, and show your interest. To be honest, if you are a true friend you do actually care about this thing that makes them so happy, even if you don’t actually care about the physical product or whatever it is they are offering. Learn about it enough that you can tell others about it.
INSERT THEM IN CONVERSATIONS
Be thoughtful enough to recommend your friend’s side hustle any chance you get. Connect them with people you know who may be interested in what they have to offer. Just because you aren’t interested doesn’t mean others aren’t. Spread. The. Word!
Trust me, I understand the financial dilemma of being able to just buy whatever whenever, but you can make it a point to make at least one purchase from your friends. If they aren’t selling something you can use, buy it as a gift for someone who will love it.
Do it. You will feel good supporting your friends, and remember, you can’t expect them to support your side hustles if you don’t give theirs the time of day. So, take action, and show your friends that you do, in fact, care!