Who Runs The Facebook World? Groups!
Well not really but there is a lot of chatter about Facebook Groups at the moment, there is also a lot of good reason for this which will be of interest to you whether you are someone who is a member or a business owner who runs a group.
Why are Facebook Groups as addictive as a new series of The Kardashians? Should you ditch the Business Page for a Group?
Here is the low down. About 12 months ago old Zuck made some changes to the entire Facebook algorithm. Content from family and friends was prioritised over content from business pages. So was content from Facebook Groups.
This made people go into a frenzy thinking that Business Pages were out and they started investing in all these tactics to grow a Facebook Group. Silly tactics like adding friends for the sake of it and then adding them to their group to grow it. Vanity metrics!
Business pages are NOT out, they are still alive and well and still an extremely important part of having a social media presence. However, there are some differences between the 2 that will be of serious interest to a business owner.
- Groups have a different algorithm. This is purely due to Facebook prioritising Groups content. This is a financial investment for Facebook as there is a bunch of new and exciting features being added to groups so they want people to invest time and energy into growing them. Facebook wants to monetise Groups and they will, smart business sense really Zuck!
- You can have a little more control over what your members see. In the Group Settings members can select how they want to be notified including ‘All Posts’, admins cannot do this BUT they can ask members to select those settings. Meaning members can see MORE of the content.
- Like a Business Page, you can invite friends to join your Group and members can invite friends. There was an update on Friday, Jan 18th whereby those that had no accepted the join request were no longer part of the Groups numbers and could not see content. This caused a massive stir with people thinking Facebook was purging members. This is not the case it just means you need to send a reminder request to those that have invited and not accepted if you are an admin. If you are a group member make sure you accept the request from those groups you want to be a part of.
- You cannot advertise from a Group……FOR NOW! BUT WATCH THIS SPACE! Currently, at the date of writing this blog, you can only do paid advertising from a Facebook Business page but keep reading this is changing.
- A Business Page is set up more like a social media shopfront, almost like a website on Facebook, where a group is a community of people. Very different strategies and capabilities, therefore, you should not have all your eggs in one basket. For example, a product based business can attach their online store to a Facebook Shop. There are functions like Reviews, Offers, A Fully Optimised About Tab, Services Tab etc.
So if you have considered ditching your Business Page…. DON’T. Like anything, there are seasons in social media and I am sure Zuck will return his love to the Biz Pages soon enough when he has worked his magic on the Groups.
What does this mean if you are a member of a Facebook Group?
From now, if you get invited to join a group and you want to be a member, make sure you accept the request or you will not see any of the content.
If you are a member of a group and want to see more, or less, of the content head to settings, then notifications and select the presets you want so you are always notified.
Like anything on socials, engagement is king so if you want to see content and have a group prioritised in your feed then you need to engage with the content from that group.
So get interacting and enjoy the fun!
What does this mean if you run a Facebook Group?
Basically as above in reverse, if someone is invited to join your group they will not be considered a member until they accept the request. This is ONLY for invitations not those that you approve a request to join from. You can head to your member settings, then invited and send a reminder request to those that have not accepted the invite.
You can also have some more control over how your members see your content by reminding them about the notifications settings. A welcome post set as an announcement with instructions of how to do this would work perfectly as well as periodical reminders in your content.
And because engagement is king you need to keep your content engaging so that members will engage with you and your group will stay in their feed.
More on how to do this coming up shortly!
Current and new features for Groups that you will want to know about!
Zuck is a smart man. He has done all this so that people will invest in groups when a feature of the platform has a large market share that means they can monetise it! Facebook is a business after all so we need to expect this. So those people that have invested in groups only and have 50K plus members and enjoyed the FREE benefits….. the glory days will not always be so glorious!
There are some great things that have already come to Groups that you will want to know about and more that are in the winds.
- Social Learning – If you have a teaching aspect to your business you can have your group as a social learning group. This allows you to add units. You can have them as compulsory or not and see members progress. Really useful if you are using a group to manage participants of a course or have actions you need them to take. A FOOTNOTE – If you run a coaching business, always remember that we do not own these platforms and putting all your eggs in the Facebook basket for delivering content may not serve you. I would not be surprised if this gets monetised at some point, but for now, it is free so enjoy.
- Events. If you have a group and create an event inside the group then the invite goes to all members as a notification. Unlike an event on your personal or business page that just sends a notification that you created one. As a member of a group, this means you then get all the notifications for that event, including reminders to let the creator know if you are going. This makes events a really powerful platform in a group environment. On a business page you need to invest more time and love to sharing the event, and potentially advertise it.
- Badges. You may have seen badges become part of a Group. This is just a super cool feature where members can earn little badges like ‘Founding Member’ ‘Conversation Starter’ ‘Visual Storyteller’ it is really engaging and encouraged members to engage even more.
- Group chats – You can create a Messenger chat with all members of the group OR choose some of the members. Messenger is one of the biggest communication platforms around so this is a really good way to get into a deeper connection with your members.
- You can add Files to Groups meaning you can keep your members updated with important content that they can find easily through a Files Tab as opposed to A Business Page where you cannot do this.
- You can add a link to your Group on your Facebook Page so people who follow or visit your page can choose to join.
There is also a number of things in the wind that are kind of cool when it comes to Facebook Groups that are being rolled out. Some groups may already have these options, some may not, Facebook rolls out feature updates to batches of Groups so if you don’t have some of these functions yet. Hold tight.
- Mentorship – You can add a Mentorship programme to your group. This is really powerful especially for business groups, as this allows your members to engage at an even deeper level. Or if you have people with specific knowledge that will help your members this can work too. For example: A group focused on healthy living could have someone who specialises in Meal Planning, Exercise, Mindset and members can choose to be mentored by the ones that suit.
- Adding your Facebook Pixel – This is not rolled out to all Groups. The info states those with over 250 members can do this, which is not accurate, this is a batched roll out or still in beta test. I know this as I cannot do this yet myself with my Social Media 101 Group.
- Paid Memberships – This has been in beta test for a while and it means that you will be able to charge a membership to be a part of a group through the platform. People are already doing (I have one myself) where they manage a paid group of clients through a Facebook Group. If and when this rolls out what it will do for FREE Groups remains to be seen, so we will have to just wait on that one.
- Paid Advertising – With the ability to add a Facebook Pixel in the winds Paid Ads will be not far behind! How this will work again is not something we know yet, whether it be to advertise to members, set targeted audiences within your members or advertise the Group on the larger Facebook platform. Who knows! But it will come, I know this because Facebook is a business and this is a HUGE way to monetise Groups.
Should you start a Facebook Group if you are a business owner? The Pros and Cons.
Don’t let this make you think you need to add a Facebook Group pronto. You don’t. But perhaps you can start to consider how this is a great leverage tool for your business.
You can start a Facebook Group as a preview group and add extra content in there. Make sure there is a carrot dangler. Why would people want to be in your group? WIIFM – What’s In It For Me.
You can start a group to manage clients or VIP groups. This works really well for communication just make sure they set their setting appropriately.
The pro’s of having a group are that there is a different algorithm and you will capitalise on the various functions available now and that are coming.
The con’s are that they are work! You need to put just as much love into growing a Group as a page. If you don’t have time or really the need then I ask – why bother? It’s like using Pinterest cause your neighbour said to. Have a group but only if there is a really strong strategy and you have a measure of success behind it.
How do I grow my Facebook Group? Wahh help me!
Like anything on socials you need a STRATEGY. Merely starting a group, inviting everyone and hoping for the best is not a strategy.
You need to have a point of difference, you need to have a value proposition and you need to add value to your members.
This means not just SELLING but adding VALUE.
What that value is is dependant on your business and what you offer.
Eg. A photographer could have a preview group for business owners to teach them how to take good images for their business. Off this you could capitalise and have a Business Package you can offer to members of that group only.
You need to invest in quality content that will engage your audience. Content Marketing is just as important in a group as a page.
For example – If you have started a business networking group which there is a million of on Facebook what will be your point of difference. Just allowing advertising is NOT it if you are wondering. What is your unique value proposition? What do you give that other businesses groups do not? Have a niche and OWN IT!
FYI people will go with and invest in the group they get the most value from so make it yours or it will not be successful!
GLORIOUS FACEBOOK GROUPS – Your one stop shop to start, grow, engage and leverage off a Facebook Group
With so many people starting Facebook Groups it has become a real point of coaching in itself.
You want a group that is successful and serves a purpose for you, your mission and your business. Whatever that is, it is your mission and business so it will be different for everyone.
Whether it be a group to add value, a group to manage clients or a group to find leads to convert there is a strategy that will help you grow it and funnel people into it.
I have created an online course that is launching in February!
Glorious Facebook Groups – Your one stop shop to start, engage and leverage off a Facebook Group.
This will take you through all the basics, strategy and know how to have a SUCCESSFUL Facebook Group. This programme has self-paced content you can work through as well as 2 group coaching sessions so you can get someone on one help specific for your niche strategy.
Early bird prices are on NOW so grab a spot now, they end Feb 4th!
Let’s get our Group On in 2019!