A Facebook group is VERY different from having a page.
Although I advise you to have a page (for reputation, access to paid adverts, share the content of your page on your personal profile, access to page insights, apps, etc), having a group might be the next best thing.
With the recent algorithm change, the reach of pages is much lower than before. Unless you have a VERY high rate of engagement in your page, or use paid ads, not many people is going to see your content.
Having a group might come in handy.
Here are some of the main benefits:
– When you post into your group, all members receive an instant notification
that you just posted in there (whilst your page followers receive nothing).
– Groups are more intimate spaces, they have a community feeling where members feel more at ease to participate in discussions and interact.
– You are able to deliver special content, offers, videos, events, etc, just for the group, making it easier to connect with you.
– It’s then much easier to increase engagement in a group, create and nurture relationships that can flourish into clients or partnerships.
So, let’s have a look at these 15 steps to create your Facebook group:
Choosing the name of your group is a very important task, but don’t worry, it’s not set-in-stone and you can always change it later.
My advice would be to make it a fun name but at the same time one that contains the main keywords of what you do, so the right people will find you on Facebook group searches.
Here are some tips:
– If you have a business name other than your personal name, you can use that. Eazy peazy.
– If the name of your business is your personal name, you have two options: include it in the group’s name, or name it something different but still related to your business/niche.
For example, you might have something like:
“Manifest Your Soulmate With Sally Anderson” (where Sally Anderson is you, and your business is helping people manifesting their soulmate).
You can simply name it “Manifesting Your Soulmate”, that contains the main keywords of your core business.
I would advise that you do a group search yourself on Facebook with your keywords and see the related existent names, so you don’t have a duplicate name, and get some ideas for yours.
You have three options of privacy:
My advice is to go with the second or third option.
As I mentioned before, the main benefit of a group is the feeling of being a community, a safe space. Making it public completely eliminates that feeling.
Also, by being public, everyone can see the content, so also eliminates the need
to join the group.
And you want people to join your group, right? So by making it closed, they’ll
only see the content (and have access to all the yummy stuff) if they become members.
People that find your group on searches become curious to what’s happening, which encourages them to join.
Secret is an option you might want to choose only in very specific situations: it can be for example a place for current clients of one of your courses to have access to exclusive content and interact with each other.
Since it is secret, it won’t show up on Facebook searches.
You have the option to write a description of your group, and what you write here is very important, since it will be visible to all the people that find your group on Facebook, but are not members yet.
So you want to tell them what your group is all about and encourage the right people to join. You also want to include your main keywords in the description.
Here are some ideas to include in your description:
– Say welcome and tell who you are
– Explain what the group is about and its purpose (or mission)
– Include links to your website or blog, for example taking people to an offer
– Tell them the rules of the group: when to post, spam and behaviour rules, if members can or not post links to their websites or other groups,
– If it’s too long, you can also create a post with the guidelines and add
the link to this post on the group’s description
– Include your group daily themes (if you are having them)
– You can also pin your description to the top of your group’s feed, so new members will read it
– Don’t overwhelm people with too much information. Make it simple and straight to the point.
One way of getting interaction, engagement and structure on your group is by having daily themes.
You can tell people about these themes on your group’s description.
Of course the themes will vary according to the niche of your group, but you can decide based on the hot topics of your business.
Still going with the example of the “manifesting your soulmate” business, you can have things like:
– “Dating Monday”, where people can ask questions and share experiences about dating.
– “Self-love Tuesday: what are you doing today to take care of yourself?”
And other related themes for the rest of the week.
You can also decide to have a specific day of the week where the theme is “advertise yourself”, when people can share posts about their business, links to their website or blog posts.
Or have a “live video” day, where members can do live videos on your group.
These themes and structure will engage people and will provide them a reason to come back to your group. It works much better than just having random posts every day.
Welcome New Members
To further enhance that community feeling of your group, you need to welcome new members after you approve them to join.
On the right hand side of your group, under “members”, Facebook will tell you that you have new members and you can post an automatic welcome message to them.
This is very handy and works great when you have a very large group and many people joining.
When you use these automatic welcome messages, the new members names will be highlighted and they will be notified.
I recommend though that you tailor the post to include more things, such as asking the new members to introduce themselves, ask questions, give them a link to an offer on your website, etc.
I compare this to welcoming new people to an event you are hosting at your house. It makes people feel welcome and acknowledged.
If you want to make them feel even more special in joining your group, you can welcome each person individually.
That gives them their own space and spotlight to introduce themselves, and might encourage people to do so.
Share Engaging Content
You as the owner and host of the group, need to consistently share content that is valuable.
One important thing is to allow your members to post on the group (we’ll talk about that next), but your group cannot be just their posts.
You have to show up fully and consistently.
You need to show up often to your members, so they feel this is an active community, which encourages interaction and engagement.
Some people prefer to do live videos, others prefer to write posts, others prefer to share photos, others prefer a mix of both.
You need to share what comes naturally to you and makes sense to your community.
This is another reason why having a group is so different from having a page.
In a page, you can remain anonimous and “hide” behind your business page
name, but on a group everything you do comes from your personal profile and your personal name and is visible.
So, people will relate the group to you and your business if you show up often to them.
And also, it’s always a good idea to let your members know what’s going on in your business: new courses, blog posts, offers, products, etc. Make sure you always show the benefits and results they can get from your stuff.
Allow Member’s Posts
You have the possibility to allow or not other members to post in your group wall.
I strongly recommend you do.
As said before, you want your group to have a sense of community, to be a safe space where people can open up.
So not allowing them to post to the wall is the complete opposite of that.
It might help you control spam, unsolicited advertising and other things, but it limits people. And some of the best discussions in groups happen when members post things such as questions, asking for help, advice, etc.
Remember: the group is not (just) for you to advertise and promote your business, services and products. It’s for everyone to interact with everyone.
So let people be free to post every day.
I would only recommend two things:
1. make sure you have written the guidelines/rules in regards to what is allowed to be posted and what isn’t (such as advertising, unrelated topics, etc),
2. Make sure you review all posts before they become visible on the wall. This will give you a bit of a sense of “quality control”.
In all groups there will always be situations where some people will abuse and post things they are not allowed and you’ll have to deal with that, but it is better to allow member’s posts as a general rule.
Post Group Challenges
Group challenges are fun and create lots of engagement.
Besides you delivering great content in the form of posts, images or live videos, doing challenges is also a great way of providing value.
You can do this such as a 30 day blog challenge, 10 day walking event, 7 day healthy food detox, etc, depending of course of your niche and audience.
You can even offer a weekly or monthly prize to make it even more interesting, like discounts, samples, eBooks, etc.
Just make sure to make the challenges simple and clear.
When you welcome new members, you can even let them know about the current challenge and invite them to join in, creating engagement right from the start.
You can make it like a weekly challenge or a month challenge, and every day post a question, photos, advice, etc, about the challenge, and encourage members to share their content too.
You can try different formats and lenghts of time and see what works best for your group, since there’s no set-in-stone sucess formula here.
And, above all, have fun with it! As I always say, it’s SOCIAL media, so be social and have fun with your members!
Promote Your Stuff
As said before, you need to post engaging and valuable content to your members on a consistent basis, like tips, advice, information, etc.
But, you can and should also promote your business stuff too!
The trick here is to first of all, do not sound salesy. And second, you need to tell your members about the benefits for them in regards to your products or services.
So, make it special. Do not just advertise the great course you have on your website.
Create an event for the launch of your product or service and invite your members.
Do live videos where you talk about the product or service, where you tell your members why you created them, and how it can help them.
You can also offer early-bird discounts, a free sample, and other exclusive offers just for your group members, that they won’t find anywhere else, making them feel special.
Please notice that when you are active on your group, when you show up fully, and when you consistently provide value, your group members will like and want to know more about your products or services!
Remember: selling on social media is always a “consequence” of being of service to others and providing value first.
Be The Leader
You are the nurturer, the protector and the leader of your group.
So, if you decide to invest in having a group, you need to make a commitment to yourself and your members, to make the time to manage it and show up consistently.
It’s by showing up fully and consistently that people will get to know you, trust you, see you as an expert and want to become your clients too.
So, have fun but at the same time take your group seriously as part of your business.
So, take time on your calendar to dedicate just to your group: to post, to approve posts to go on the wall, to contact people that are posting stuff that is not allowed, to remove the so-called “trolls” that are causing issues to the group, to respond to comments and questions, etc.
But notice that being a leader does not mean you have to always jump first to respond to all the questions.
Sometimes it’s good to let other people answer first and have the opportunity to create a discussion, instead of jumping quickly to “save your members and show your expertise”.
Yes you should respond, but give the space and allow other members to have their say too.
Doing this can also give you amazing ideas for great new products or services, and also provides a great opportunity for you to know how and what your audience thinks and wants!
If your group gets too big and active, and things get too overwhelming, you can always hire an assistant to help you manage it on a daily basis.
Remember: having a group is an investment you are doing for your business and also to be of service and help other people.
There you have it!
10 simple ways to create and rock your super amazing awesome Facebook group.
I would love to hear from you and know about your Facebook group.