Facebook Group Best Practices – 29 Benefits Aspects and EngagementMay 02, 2018
Want to learn the Facebook Group Best Practices? In this article, we'll tackle more in-depth aspects of Facebook groups
and I'll teach to how to benefit from them. This article is useful for both those newbies and for those that know a thing or two about why is it good to have a Facebook group. It is also useful for those that are selling physical products, or services, or for those that are freelancers.
Last week we had the chance to discuss some basics that you should know when starting a Facebook Group. We did that because there are still Facebook users who don't know much about how to create a Facebook group and what they offer you.
You will find in this article 29 Facebook Group Best Practices that will cover some aspects to consider when starting a Facebook Group, Benefits of Facebook groups and how to engage with your community.
Let's start this Facebook Group Best Practices article by telling you to imagine that you are just building your start-up or company and you want to create a Facebook Group because you've heard that it does good for your image. Yes, you've heard well, but we shouldn't limit ourselves to only this idea. Facebook Groups come with a wide variety of benefits, but we'll discuss these later on.
For now, I'll point out some ideas that you should consider when starting a Facebook Group.
In our opinion, the most important Facebook Group best practices is to make sure you understand that a Facebook Group is not about your company, it is about the community you are building with its (Facebook Group) help. Think like this: if you were the one to be in a group that would have only the admin talk just about its company or its products, would you stay in that group to engage with others? I guess that the answer is no. As it appears, and as it is an instinct to us – even though we sometimes don't admit – people are craving to be part of good communities, from where they can find a lot of useful ideas, many insights about a new product that was launched, and where they can talk with others that like the same things they are interested in, too.
I repeat, would you prefer to be in a group that doesn't offer you some value, or would you prefer to be in a Facebook group where you enjoy going and find ideas? As in 99% of the situations in life, don't do to others what you wouldn't like to be done to you. This situation can be easily applied as one of the Facebook Group best practices.
Another aspect to consider when starting a Facebook Group is that you must genuinely want to interact with people, to connect with them, not only in terms of technology but also in terms of ideas. Hand in hand with this aspect is the next one, which regards time: you have to have time to create and nurture a Facebook Group. One does not simply create a group, add people and then expect everything to run smoothly. Create content that engages with your members or that helps them engage with others. Take some time every single day – around one hour – to make sure that your group is becoming the Facebook group you want it to be.
Take 10-20 minutes a day (depending on the size of your group) to thank new members for choosing to join your group, write some interesting content based on the purpose of your group. Basically, treat your Facebook Group as a plant that you have to take care of every day. If you don't enjoy plant, think of something else that could help you make an analogy. Or if you don't like taking care of things, or you don't have time to do so, then don't start a Facebook Group. That is our advice and opinion. Maybe you have a different one?
Furthermore, if you want to start a Facebook Group you want to realize that this would be a long-term project. There are two aspects here. A Facebook Group is a long-term project in terms of growing and contributing to your revenue. Don't expect that as soon as you'll create a group, your earnings will triple. Yes, a Facebook Group can help you sell more, but only if it's done right. What does this mean? A Facebook Group is a long-term project because you should think from the beginning that you'll have to constantly create posts, thank your members, put questions, discuss things. Do not do this for a couple of months and then disappear. Be prepared to get involved.
Moreover, another important Facebook Group best practice is that you must have a clear idea of what your Facebook Group should be about and what community should you build. Don't shoot blindly. Think of this: you have an expensive product. To whom do you promote it? To people with medium income or to people that can afford your product? The answer is obvious.
The same is with a Facebook Group. First of all, don't add everyone you have on your list. Do some research and find out who from your list can be interested in being a part of your group and add only those people. Creating a niched Facebook Group is the best thing you can do because people in it will actually be happy to be a part of it and meet new people that like the same thing as they do. Someone said that: “attracting everyone is appealing to no one” and I think it was surely right. Think that it is similar to creating a persona in a sales process.
I mentioned a couple of times that you have to add people to your group. Your attention should be on this: invite people to your Facebook Group if they gave you their consent. That means if you want to have a meaningful group, you shouldn't add members by yourself. “How can I do this otherwise?” you ask. One way to do it is through your Facebook Page or Profile. Post something that explains why have you created this group and what will it offer to your members; add a link and wait for people to ASK to join your group.
Another way is to privately send people you think that would be a fantastic addition to your group a message through Facebook Messenger. The content of the message should be about the same as the Facebook Page post, but we do want to emphasize that it should be more personal. Do not let people think you have a bot that sends them a message. It is a bit of work, but hey, with work comes success. After this you'll see that you've created a community of people that really want to be in your group; these people are the most valuable ones.
The fact that Facebook now (almost) recognizes fake profiles, is of a great help because you'll know for sure that you only have real people in your groups.
Just as you create a Facebook Group, create its rules, too. Members should know from the beginning what to expect and they should know the do's and don'ts of your group. Be vigilant and don't often make exceptions from your rules, otherwise, everyone will start disobeying. This sounds a bit harsh, but only by creating and respecting some rules, your group will be and will remain exactly what you want to be.
Another aspect to consider when starting a Facebook Group is that you should be there for your members. If they ask for help, give them help; if they ask for ideas, help them receive ides and so on. There is a situation that most likely will happen: people will be shy to take initiative and post something to your group.
Help them by telling them stories of your own, share your own ideas and make people want to answer your posts and engage with you and with others. Keep an eye on them and if you see that they have ideas that you know they can be improved, don't be condescending. Make an analogy and tell them a story, because storytelling runs in our veins. You'll that this is the best way to engage with your audience because it will make people feel more comfortable and will desire to share their own stories, too. After all, a Facebook Group is about creating and building relationships.
I know that you are most interested in this part, but we sure hope you read the part before, as it gives you a lot of things to consider when creating a Facebook Group.
The most obvious benefit that came into the discussion even in the first part of this blog post, is that Facebook Groups help create genuine and meaningful communication between their members. As Facebook Groups should be niched, you'll find only members that are interested in the subject of your group. You'll be certain they will not come and go, but rather they will want to stay and be a part of the community you created.
At the beginning of this year, Facebook said that peoples' newsfeeds will be a bit different. Facebook will try to show them more posts from their friends, from groups, and fewer posts from Pages they follow. Do you see where we're going to? Just to be sure, we'll explain. As Facebook will try to show fewer Pages posts, more Facebook Group posts will begin to appear onto their **news-feed**. This is a tremendous Facebook Group benefit for a start-up/freelancer/company to have an alternative to make contact with their followers and potential followers. As groups are more genuine than a Page, people will enjoy more to see this kind of posts in their newsfeed and you, as the group creator, will be happy and soundly to know that you'll reach your audience almost every time.
Thinking of another Facebook Group best practices, other benefit is that you can choose to create a broader group or a smaller one. Though as I said before, I (and many other people that are more specialized than me) advise you to have smaller groups of people that are genuinely interested in the topic of your group. If you have the resources, you can create a broader group linked to your Facebook Page and then create smaller groups with different topics that your Facebook Page talks about. This would require you have a team that can manage them. For a beginner or a person that just started a group, it is best to manage just one group – it is safer in terms of being able to respond to all the comments, to all the inquiries, to thank members and so on.
If you want to launch a product you can create a group where you can add members that will be interested in it. This comes with the benefit that you'll find valuable knowledge on people's real expectations about a/your product: you'll be able to present your ideas and your product as it is, and then find out if people are into it. If they are not – why and how you can improve it before launching. Yes, in terms of creating a new product some may say that you should do a research before you even create it, but many don't have the resources for this. And even if you do the research before, maybe you want to be reassured that what you understood and created is in fact what people want. That is why a Facebook Group is great when you want to launch a product.
One of the other things I've noticed is that you can use Facebook Groups for communicating with members invited to an event. Suppose you will organize an event for a product launch, for meeting with other people in your domain, or you want to organize a training where you'll bring some speakers to teach your guests about various topics.
There was such an event organized by Microsoft and Veeam where they wanted to both talk about artificial intelligence, use of cloud storage, marketing automation and a few other modern technologies, but they also promoted, in a subtle way, their products and services. Well, they could have created a group, a secret one, and could have invited potential guests. Those guests would have been more comfortable in talking face-to-face with others if they got the chance to know a bit about who is coming to the event, what are they doing, why are they coming. After this, you can keep the Facebook Group for post-event talks and future ideas sharing.
A small company almost does what I described previously, therefore is using one of these Facebook Groups best practices. They organize coaching events about social media marketing and then they ask the guest if they agree to be added to their group. They do this after each event, thus they let people discuss, ask questions, meet new people that are interested in social media marketing. Maybe they didn't get the chance to ask the questions at the training, or maybe they didn't find themselves in a situation that needed some questions. By adding the guests in the Facebook Group, you give them an opportunity to get answers. And it is also an efficient way to keep track of your trainees and see what they've accomplished.
A benefit that goes hand in hand with what I wrote about is that a niche Facebook Group helps in communicating in a natural way. Those guests that we're at the training – they know each other, and they feel more comfortable talking to the group and helping others. Thinking of whatever other groups you've created, people chosen correctly will have a common purpose of being in the group, will like the same topics (the ones that the group is based on), and they will be happy to help others with what they already know. It can happen in life that you can't discuss a topic with anybody, just because nobody knows details about that specific topic – this is where a Facebook Group can really help someone.
Facebook announced that they will implement a new Facebook Groups Tab, just at the last conference held (F8 2018) . They obviously saw the importance and all the benefits that groups can bring, and they decided to replace the old Facebook Groups App with a Tab. With this new feature, users will be able to quickly scroll between their groups and check constantly the groups that they like the most.
Another important thing that's coming is that members of a group will be able to watch a video together, in the same time. This new feature's name is “Watch Party”. The group leaders or the admin will be able explain the video, by narrating it.
Useful will also be the new Facebook Groups Plug-In that you can implement in your website and facilitate the process of gathering new members to your Facebook group.
As these are new features, you can read more about them right here, and maybe keep an eye on us, to always be informed.
The last step in this process of starting a Facebook Group is actually being active in it. As the admin of the group, you should make people be comfortable with you, not to let them think that you're a boss that doesn't appreciate its employees' opinions and ideas.
Remember that people choose to be in a group because they want to learn and support each other with ideas and advice. This will not happen if the group is not properly run (you post unrelated links, you constantly try to persuade member into buying your product, or other similar situations). Y**ou should have valuable information, tackle more aspects of a topic, and be a part of the community.**
I said before that if you see that your members have a difficult time in engaging, you should make the first step and share a story of your own, present yourself, or whatever other things you want people to discuss afterward. Bottom line is to help people open up in your group.
In terms of what content to post, you can now make live videos within your group. It's a great way of real-time engagement, a moment when you can actually talk with your members and feel closer to them. In my opinion, this can help them at being more comfortable.
If you have a physical product to present, post some story related to it, add some benefits of that products, and don't try to make people buy it in an obvious way (using calls to action and others). Of course, if necessary and if the group permits this, you can post some great offers now and then. The value of the groups' content should be the one that makes people buy your product, not the fact that you ask them in a straightforward way.
It is also best to not only share a link in a post but to add some content to it. Write about what people can find in that link, and based on what you are sharing, express your opinions, tell people why do you chose to share the link, and so on. It will bring members more value, and it will also help themselves decide if they want to click on the link or not. Besides, it is more efficient for someone to read about something in the app they are using at that time, rather than switching between apps.
Regarding videos, you can also diverse you posts by filming yourself talking about a topic. Nonetheless, the videos shouldn't be long, maybe 3 to 5 minutes. Why is that? Well, members' time is a priceless resource, and you don't want to waste that. Explain people some ideas in a few minutes, then they will have the choice to comment on your video and ask more questions about the topic. Even if the subject you want to discuss has the potential of a long discussion, think of making a “trilogy” or something: split your discussion into several 3 minute-videos.
The next idea is actually not about you engaging with your members. It's about letting people engage between them. If someone asks a question, let your members answer and don't be the first to do that. It will intimidate your members. Answer the question only if you can see that no one did, or just give people a reminder that they should answer, through a comment. In the case of you being constantly the first to answer questions, will result in not having a group discussion at all; members will feel uncomfortable sharing their ideas after you, the admin, already did because they can think that their ideas won't be taken into consideration or that the ideas are not good.
In the last blog post, I've shown you types of posts that you can create based on your group's type. There were 3 special Facebook Groups that had a few more features: the Buying and Selling Group, the Video Games Group and the Social Learning Group. Make use of these features and for example, post something about finding players of the same game.
Create some polls and find people's opinion about a certain subject or let them help you if you have troubles in finding the next perfect feature of your product/service. You can even let people add their choice to the poll, thus offering them the opportunity to be an important part of your decisions. Maybe you didn't think about that choice, but many would have wanted it.
A useful thing is that if you want to create an event for your followers, you can create it right in the group. You can choose to invite all the members to that event, which is very convenient as you don't have to search for every person in your group, separately.
The whole idea is to constantly try to engage with your members, asking them questions, discussing topics, helping them when they need to. A Facebook Group is all about relationships.
To conclude, remember to have a clear idea of what you want the group to be, whom would you like to invite in the group and why, and have time to engage with your members in every way you can.